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Free agent profile: Quarterback Jacoby Brissett

Does it make sense to bring the former starting QB in to push Drew Lock?

Denver Broncos v Indianapolis Colts Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images

Jacoby Brissett has started 32 NFL games at QB. That is more than the 26 he started in college. He was thrust into the starting role for the Patriots in 2016 when Tom Brady was suspended and Jimmy Garoppolo was hurt. He started two games that year and he showed enough for the Colts to trade him for former first round wide receiver Phillip Dorsett. The Colts needed a QB because Andrew Luck was hurt and would miss the entire 2017 season. Luck played in 2018, but retired before the 2019 season. That thrust Brissett back into the starting role. He started 15 games at QB for the Colts in both 2017 and 2019.

In 2017 Jacoby Brissett was ranked 22nd of 35 by passer rating. That was significantly better than the starter for the Broncos, Trevor Siemian, who was 29th. In 2019 Jacoby was 19th by passer rating. The “main starter” for the Broncos in 2019, Joe Flacco, was 25th. Brissett was graded at 62.4 in 2017 and 59.2 in 2019 by PFF. Both were “yellow” grades. PFF’s color scale goes blue > green > yellow > orange > red. FWIW PFF graded Flacco at 67.2 in 2019 and Drew Lock at 58.1 that year. For reference, Aaron Rodgers, who had one of the best seasons ever for an NFL QB in 2020, graded at 94.5. Peyton Manning’s 2013 graded at 92.5. Siemian’s 2017 graded at 53.0.

Why the Broncos should bring in Jacoby Brissett.

Brissett is an unrestricted free agent, but he is second tier among free agent QBs with much bigger names on the move. He may end up as a plan B starter for some team, but his body of work so far in the NFL does not have any team looking at him as their QB of the future. The Colts opted for an expensive one-year rental of Philip Rivers in 2020 and now they have traded for the reclamation project known as Carson Wentz. The team most familiar with Jacoby’s abilities does not view him as a viable plan A at starting QB.

That being said, if the Broncos want someone to back up Lock who is a decent starter when he has to start, Brissett is a much better veteran option than Jeff Driskel was for the 2020 Broncos. Brissett will probably command a 6-8 million dollar salary (he made six as the backup for the Colts in 2020), but he might be too expensive for George Paton. Particularly if the plan is to role with Brett Rypien as the backup for Lock in 2020 (which it might be, your guess is as good as mine right now). We will know more after the draft and free agency.

Brissett only makes sense if Lock is going to be our starter in 2021 and there is little confidence that Rypien could be a serviceable starter if Lock gets hurt.

Why the Broncos should pass on Limp Brissett.

Brissett is an average-to-below average starter. He is not really going to push Drew Lock to up his game in order to keep his job as the starter. Brissett is comparable to bringing in any other former full time starting QB who has proven that they are no better than average (Andy Dalton, Alex Smith, Tyrod Taylor, Robert Griffin, Matt Schaub or Cam Newton). All would just be expensive insurance policies purchased to hedge against Lock getting hurt.

The front office my like Rypien, who is much much cheaper and showed that he can play decently well against a terrible defense.

Poll

Should the Broncos pursue Jacoby Brissett?

This poll is closed

  • 62%
    no
    (493 votes)
  • 29%
    yes - but only if he comes here for less than the 6 million he was making in 2020.
    (234 votes)
  • 7%
    yes
    (59 votes)
786 votes total Vote Now