Nashville will be the site of Tom Brady's 2019 preseason debut, according to The Athletic's Jeff Howe, as the expectation is that New England's 42-year-old quarterback will get into action for "a few series" tonight against the Titans.
Plans are always fluid in the preseason, but the expectation is for Tom Brady to get a few series tonight. Also sounds like Isaiah Wynn is ready to go tonight after amplifying his workload this week.
— Jeff Howe (@jeffphowe) August 17, 2019
But ESPN's Mike Reiss apparently heard otherwise, and said that Brady is not expected to play in tonight's contest.
I’m told that Tom Brady is not expected to play tonight.
— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) August 17, 2019
Howe and Reiss are two of the best on the beat, and don't need to throw crap against the wall to legitimize themselves, so this may indeed be a situation that the Patriots are playing by ear entering tonight's game in Nashville.
But it's a situation and decision that will be made by Patriots coach Bill Belichick, if Brady's media scrum on Thursday is any indication as to how the quarterback and the team handles the preseason lineup.
"I just expect to play, and if [Bill Belichick] says, 'You're not playing,' then I'm not playing," Brady said on Thursday when asked about his desire to play in the preseason given the workload and the short turnaround between games. "I think there's a lot of things that factor into his decisions, but I'm not involved in any of those, so I just show up and practice. That's been my role, that's been my job, so I'm trying to show up and do a good job."
If Brady stays on the sidelines as a smiling spectator for the second straight game, you can probably expect another 50-50 split between veteran backup Brian Hoyer and rookie Jarrett Stidham.
Hoyer completed 12 of 14 passes for 147 yards and two touchdowns, while Stidham totaled 179 yards and a touchdown with completions on 14 of 24 passes in New England's 31-3 beatdown of the Lions last week.