An NFL Hall of Famer suggested that the New England Patriots must pick a successor to quarterback Tom Brady’s throne now, rather than struggle later if the veteran signal-caller decides to hang up his cleats for good. Cris Carter, host of FOX Sports 1’s “First Things First”, said the Patriots must pick a quarterback whom they think could eventually succeed Brady in the 2019 NFL Draft so they can keep their winning tradition alive.

“That means drafting a quarterback, allowing him to play underneath and learn from Tom Brady for two, three, however long Tom Brady wants to play, and then allow him to graduate to be the starter,” said Carter, referring to Brady’s plan to play until he’s 45 years old.

Carter said this was the situation with the Green Bay Packers when they selected Aaron Rodgers with the 24th pick in the 2005 NFL Draft as a replacement for Brett Favre. Rodgers served as backup from 2005 to 2007 before he was entrenched as the starter after Favre decided to retire in 2008.

Carter said the Rodgers situation happened several times in the NFL, and young quarterbacks can eventually learn from the veterans. Eventually, Carter said these young quarterbacks emerge as “better quarterbacks when they have the opportunity to play.”

Patriots have 12 picks in the 2019 Draft

The Patriots own 12 picks in the 2019 NFL Draft, which they are expected to use to fill several voids, especially at tight end after the retirement of Rob Gronkowski.

Many expect the Patriots to use the No. 32 overall pick to take Gronkowski’s replacement and a quarterback in the second round.

The Patriots are reportedly interested in trading for Arizona Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen, but they are also eyeing Duke’s Daniel Jones and Will Grier of West Virginia in the 2019 NFL Draft.

Aside from the No.

32 pick, the Patriots have two picks in the second round and one pick each in the third and fourth rounds. They have no picks in the fifth and sixth rounds, but the Patriots have three in the seventh round. The NFL also awarded the Patriots four compensatory picks, making it 12 for New England.

What separates Brady from Rodgers

Speaking of Rodgers, host Colin Cowherd of “The Herd” on Fox Sports 1 discussed the difference between Brady and the Packers quarterback, but he never touched the talent aspect or the number of Super Bowl rings. According to Cowherd, Brady has maturity and the ability to not hold grudges “That's what separates Brady from Rodgers: Leadership, not talent,” said Cowherd.

Rodgers’ leadership ability has been put in the spotlight several times, especially with the Packers failing to reach the postseason in the past two years. Also, it was reported that Rodgers caused the firing of head coach Mike McCarthy. Now, all eyes are on Rodgers as he deals with a new head coach in Matt LaFleur.