Gordon: Richmond Quarterback Is Perfect Successor to Brady
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A silver lining for the New England Patriots’ future at quarterback could quite possibly come from the state of Virginia.
Richmond quarterback Kyle Lauletta. In a draft filled with great quarterback talent like Josh Rosen and Baker Mayfield, Lauletta flies under the radar and could potentially fall into the lap of the Patriots in April.
The 2018 Senior Bowl MVP played in every year of his college career breaking school records in yards with 10,465 and touchdowns with 73.
But it’s the underlying details that make him such an appealing option for the AFC Champions.
Lauletta has in fact been an established leader in his life and some would say he’s a natural in that aspect. So much so that in fact his major in college was in leadership studies.
Lauletta also answered questions about a quarterback he reminds most scouts of. Jimmy Garoppolo.
“Jimmy Garoppolo, an FCS guy, a guy I’ve been compared to a few times throughout the process,” Lauletta said to Pro Football Talk. “He’s a great guy to be compared to; he’s doing really, really well. That whole system they have, the success speaks for itself.
The former Spider also brings comparison to another Patriot quarterback on the roster. Can you take a guess who?
“I’d say if you look at quarterbacks who have been successful over the long haul, accuracy is the most important attribute,” Lauletta said, “and I think I’ve shown that my accuracy is elite. Anytime you can put the ball where you want it to be, I think you have a chance at the next level. First and foremost, I do think that is my best attribute, quarterback skill-wise.”
Other than comparing to quarterback Tom Brady in the leadership aspect, the scariest thing about him has always been the accuracy that the five-time Super Bowl champion is able to exhibit consistently. Something that Lauletta is working tirelessly to make the best it can be.
That may be the entire case needed for Patriots head coach Bill Belichick to consider drafting him but it only gets more convincing. Lauletta and his family have a very accomplished past in the sport of lacrosse. Belichick loves multi-sport players as wide receiver Chris Hogan who currently plays for the Patriots was also a lacrosse player at Monmouth. Belichick’s son and Patriots safeties coach Stephen, was also a lacrosse Defenseman and Long-Stick Midfielder for Rutgers.
“I was a big lacrosse guy, absolutely,” Lauletta said. “For a while I thought I might enjoy playing that in college. I just enjoy football more. I think it’s a better team sport. But I’ve always grown up a lacrosse guy. My dad was an All-American in high school. My uncle played in college.”
Speaking of fathers, there’s a lot of historic similarities between the player and the coach. Lauletta’s father Joe was a quarterback for Navy in the mid-1980’s and all the way up from the 50’s to the 90’s, Belichick’s father Steve was a scout for their football team.
The rumors pile on and on about the quarterback joining the Patriots and it could be reasonable to assume that a possible reason why they traded for an early second round pick was to be in position to draft Lauletta.
While it could be a stretch to assume this, at the same time it isn’t. According to Lauletta he has spotted and talked to scouts from the organization who seemed to be very impressed with what they saw and his lacrosse experience.
“A couple Patriots scouts came in to see me [at Richmond] and when they found out how much I liked lacrosse, that was one of the things they said, ‘Oh, Belichick will love thtis!’”
His skills and past seem to hold water in regards to the intangibles needed, but what what about his character?
Patriots practice squad safety David Jones was a teammate of Lauletta’s at Richmond and had nothing but great things to say about his character.
“He’s a hard worker, great kid, works hard in the classroom and on the field, and that obviously showed out in his performance,” Jones told NESN “We spent a lot of time together. We kinda have the same mindset. We just like to work hard.”
The NFL Draft will commence on Apr. 26 at 8:00 p.m with the Patriots currently holding a single first round selection and two second round draft picks.