Will Grier Wants Chance To Be Patriots’ Version Of Joshua Dobbs

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FOXBORO, Mass. — Joshua Dobbs was a mid-round draft pick who, after bouncing around to several different NFL franchises, finally found success this season as a starter in Minnesota.

Will Grier believes he could follow the same path for the Patriots if given the opportunity.

Grier, New England’s third-string quarterback since his arrival in late September, on Tuesday said he’s prepared to start Sunday against the New York Giants if head coach Bill Belichick calls his number.

“Whether you’re comfortable or not, you get called on, you’ve got to go play and figure out a way to win,” Grier said. “So that’s the mentality for me. I don’t know what’s going to happen. Injuries happen. You’ve it around the league, a lot of guys have had to step up and play.

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“If I’ve got to step up and play, I’ll be ready to go.”

The Patriots aren’t dealing with any injuries at the QB position. But with starter Mac Jones coming off his third benching of the season, the team could opt to make a change behind center this week in an effort to spark what’s been one of the NFL’s worst offenses.

Belichick declined to announce a starter Tuesday morning, saying only that he told Jones, Bailey Zappe, Grier and Malik Cunningham all to be “ready to go.”

While Jones and Zappe look like the top two candidates for the job (in that order), Grier did see a handful of reps with the first-team offense during New England’s bye week.

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Belichick attributed that to the Patriots not needing to prepare for a game that week, which afforded their scout-teamers a chance to run New England’s own plays rather than the upcoming opponent’s. But Grier, who’d previously worked almost exclusively with the scout team and said it “absolutely” was difficult to master the Patriots’ offense under those circumstances, appreciated the opportunity.

“It was great,” the 28-year-old said. “I came in at a tough time as far as reps go. So it was good to get some. Even the scout team reps I get when we do scout team are good. Just good to play ball.”

That’s when Grier mentioned Dobbs, who recently scored wins in his first two appearances for the Vikings after being traded twice in a span of two months. A fourth-round pick in 2017, Dobbs previously spent time with Arizona, Cleveland, Tennessee, Detroit, Jacksonville and Pittsburgh. He also had a tryout with the Patriots last year but never signed.

Grier was drafted in the third round by Carolina in 2019, then logged stints with Dallas and Cincinnati before landing in Foxboro.

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“You’ve seen guys around the league like Josh Dobbs,” said Grier, who hasn’t seen regular-season game action since his rookie year. “It’s awesome to see what he did, man. At the end of the day, you’ve just got to play ball. And he’s obviously a testament to that theory that I believe in wholeheartedly.

“If I get the opportunity, I’m just going to go play and win.”

Grier would not reveal whether he took any first-team reps during Tuesday’s practice. Jones and Zappe were the only quarterbacks to do so during the brief window that was open to reporters.

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