New England Patriots' quarterback Tom Brady rubbed elbows with other NFL stars before the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs. Brady, who is a regular Kentucky Derby aficionado, was spotted with Patriots teammates, including wide receiver Julian Edelman and backup quarterback Brian Hoyer. Brady skipped last year’s edition of the Kentucky Derby, but he returned to Churchill Downs on Friday with Edelman, business manager Ben Rawitz, and former New England offensive lineman Dan Koppen. Brady was a regular at Churchill Downs and so is Patriots head coach Bill Belichick, but it was yet unknown if the long-time New England mentor already arrived in the area.

Brady, Mayfield in one photo

While in Churchill Downs, Brady posted a photo on his Instagram account, where he was joined by Edelman and retired Patriots' wideout Deion Branch. Brady accompanied it with the caption “Got MVPs?” obviously referencing to his four Super Bowl MVP awards and one each by Edelman (2019) and Branch (2005). Edelman won the award last season for his strong play in their 13-3 win over the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII. Earlier, Brady and Edelman were spotted working out at Boston College.

In another photo posted by Brady’s former backup Jacoby Brissett, who now plays for the Indianapolis Colts, the veteran quarterback joined other current and former Patriots players, including Edelman, center Dan Koppen and long snapper Lonnie Paxton.

However, one new face stood out in the picture -- Cleveland Browns' quarterback Baker Mayfield.

While he’s not part of the Patriots’ family, Mayfield was in front of the photo, wearing a pink suit, while Brady went almost unnoticed behind him while wearing a cap. Brissett, for his part, accompanied the photo with a caption, “that time again!!” Mayfield and Brady already met each other during the shoot for the NFL 100 commercial that featured former and current stars.

Brady and Mayfield to clash in Week 8

The Patriots will have a chance to test Mayfield’s mettle when they take on the Browns in Week 8 at Gillette Stadium. Brady will meet Mayfield for the first time on the field on October 27. Last season, the Patriots did not have a chance to play Mayfield, who was taken first overall by the Browns last season.

The showdown will be an interesting one as the Patriots’ defense will be tested by Mayfield and star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. who was acquired by the Browns via trade with the New York Giants. Last season, the Patriots expressed interest in Mayfield, the Heisman Trophy winner from Oklahoma, as a possible successor to Brady, but the Browns beat them to the punch.

With Mayfield under center, the Browns improved significantly, finishing with a 7-8-1 mark after going winless the previous season. Mayfield, for his part, threw for 3,725 yards and a rookie record 27 touchdown passes in 14 games, with 13 starts. Mayfield started his Browns stint as a backup to Tyrod Taylor but he took over in Week 3 after the latter suffered an injury.