LOS ANGELES, Sept 7 (Reuters) – Veteran quarterbacks together with Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers will look to keep up their dominance amid an inflow of latest expertise within the sport’s most vital place when the NFL season kicks off this week.
A document eight QBs have been taken within the first three rounds of this yr’s draft however it’s the sport’s largest names who’re finest positioned for additional success.
Brady led Tampa Bay to a blowout Tremendous Bowl victory final season in his first yr with the franchise to assert his record-extending seventh championship ring.
The 44-year-old is trying to enhance in his twenty second season and make the Buccaneers the primary staff in 16 years to win back-to-back titles, leaving determined followers within the NFC South to ponder whether or not there may be any hope for a postseason.
“(Offensive coordinator) Byron Leftwich mentioned one thing actually good the opposite day: It is a quite simple recreation that is so laborious to execute,” Brady mentioned in an interview with NBC Sports activities.
“It is a completely imperfect recreation that you just’re making an attempt to do as completely as potential. Day by day I come out making an attempt to do it. I am hoping that is my finest yr.”
Brady mentioned he deliberate to play till he’s not a “championship-level quarterback”, which might be one other a number of years given his mastery of the place.
Reigning league MVP Rodgers may even have renewed focus following a drama-filled offseason the place it appeared the 37-year-old won’t return to Inexperienced Bay.
The Packers raised eyebrows when the staff traded as much as choose quarterback and potential eventual Rodgers substitute Jordan Love within the 2020 draft.
Rodgers mentioned his future with the staff was unsure after falling to the Bucs within the NFC Championship final season.
However the fiercely aggressive Rodgers can be again beneath middle for the Packers and if he can channel any lingering frustration into his play on the sphere, the remainder of the league higher look out.
Kansas Metropolis quarterback Patrick Mahomes will look to avenge final season’s Tremendous Bowl thumping by the hands of Brady and the overwhelming Bucs protection.
Mahomes, 25, was touted as the way forward for the league after he led the Chiefs to a come-from-behind victory over San Francisco in Tremendous Bowl LIV and can be out to show that his deadly mixture of pace and accuracy is the way forward for the place.
Mahomes final yr signed a blockbuster 10-year, $503 million contract extension, the most important in NFL historical past.
However rookie sign callers are additionally poised to make their presence felt.
First general draft decide Trevor Lawrence will make his debut for the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday whereas second decide Zach Wilson can be handed the keys to the struggling New York Jets franchise.
Mac Jones, chosen within the first spherical by New England, can even be thrown proper into motion after the Patriots’ shocking choice final month to half methods with veteran quarterback Cam Newton, who underwhelmed final season after a robust begin.
Jones has impressed in the course of the preseason and can look to maintain that momentum going within the league’s expanded, 17-game common season.
Quarterback drama may play out in San Francisco, the place the 49ers must resolve whether or not to stay with the established however often-injured Jimmy Garoppolo or hand the reigns to rookie Trey Lance, who the staff took with the No. 3 decide.
And followers can be fascinated to see how Matthew Stafford and Jared Goff reply after switching groups this offseason, with Stafford now a part of the Los Angeles Rams and Goff a member of the Detroit Lions.
The NFL’s 102nd season begins on Thursday when the Bucs host the Dallas Cowboys.
Further reporting by Amy Tennery in New York, modifying by Ed Osmond
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