Throwing competition? Drake Maye ‘excited' for Patriots' new QB room

Throwing competition? Drake Maye ‘excited' for Patriots' new QB room originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

The New England Patriots' quarterback room will look a whole lot different in 2024 -- both from a personnel perspective and a physical trait perspective.

Out are Mac Jones (traded to the Jacksonville Jaguars) and Nathan Rourke (released), with Bailey Zappe a candidate to be traded or released as well. In are veteran Jacoby Brissett (signed in free agency) and a pair of rookies in UNC's Drake Maye (No. 3 overall pick) and Tennessee's Joe Milton (No. 193 overall pick).

Maye was touted as one of the hardest-throwing passers in the 2024 NFL Draft class, but the Patriots added the one rookie QB who may throw harder in Milton, whose rocket arm is the stuff of legend.

Maye told 98.5 The Sports Hub's Zolak & Bertrand on Tuesday he's looking forward to working with (and competing against) both Milton and Brissett, who was Washington Commanders teammates last season with Maye's former UNC teammate, Sam Howell.

"Jacoby has reached out to me, and I got to know him pretty well through Sam (Howell), so he's been awesome," Maye said, as seen in the video player above. "I'm just looking forward to getting to work with him. Obviously I know Joe Milton from college, seeing him at camps and the Manning Camp and some of these other times you cross paths with him.

"So, I'm looking forward to being in that room. I think we've got a great room, so I'm just excited to be with those guys and compete."

Might one area where Maye and Milton compete be in the "strongest arm" category? When co-host Scott Zolak posed the idea of a throwing competition between the two rookies, Maye seemed up to the challenge.

"Joe can throw it, now. But hey, I ain't gonna turn it down, now. I ain't gonna turn it down," Maye responded.

Milton probably would be favored in that contest, but we respect Maye's competitive spirit. And even if the 21-year-old doesn't have the strongest arm in the room, he's committed to being the most well-prepared.

"The biggest thing is being detailed," Maye said when asked what he's working on ahead of his first NFL training camp. "With (offensive coordinator Alex) Van Pelt's offense, knowing all the details first -- I think going out there like a deer in the headlights as a rookie is not smart.

"So, fine-tuning that and really getting to study it and get to know it and be able to teach it back to somebody -- that's how kind I learn things; being able to teach it back to somebody is when I really feel like you know it. So, grinding that and getting really detailed in the playbook and the formations, all the motions, all the little stuff."

Check out Maye's full interview with Zolak & Bertrand in the YouTube video below.