RICHMOND, Va. -- When a respected media analyst such as NFL Network's Mike Mayock says that New England quarterback Ryan Mallett "popped" in joint practices Monday with Washington, it creates a little buzz.
Mayock said that Mallett proved he is a starting quarterback.
Here are a few thoughts from this perspective:
Mallett's arm can be mesmerizing at times. From a pure arm strength standpoint, he is indeed a starting-caliber quarterback. He has made a throw or two in each of the first nine training camp practices that reminds me of Drew Bledsoe.
Obviously a lot more goes into quarterback play and this is where today's Mallett buzz gets away from me a bit.
One of the things I have learned from listening to Bill Belichick over the last 15 years is that a huge part of playing the position is managing the team in a game setting, factoring in the play clock, ever-evolving situations, and stringing together a consistent series of plays.
I think that is hard to judge in this joint-practice setting.
So while we are interested to see if Mallett can take the next step in preseason action, and have liked what we have seen at times in camp, we didn't come away with the same strong feelings about Mallett as Mayock did Monday.