Getty Images

Tom Brady is hinting at another NFL comeback, but it appears the New England Patriots already have their sights set on specific alternatives for the quarterback position. A week ahead of the 2024 draft, the Patriots appear to have zeroed in on two top prospects, according to NFL Media, and would be "comfortable" selecting either at No. 3 overall.

In a mock draft based on information gathered from team decision-makers, Peter Schrager projects LSU's Jayden Daniels to go No. 2 to the Washington Commanders, behind Caleb Williams to the Chicago Bears at No. 1. After that, he has the Patriots standing pat and taking North Carolina's Drake Maye, suggesting the Patriots would be perfectly content with the scenario.

"Despite lots of smoke that New England could trade down, I believe this new Patriots regime will be comfortable with either Jayden Daniels or Maye," Schrager writes. "Pats brass took Maye out for steaks the night before his Foxborough visit earlier this month, and those guys loved the Charlotte native. That said, they also loved their top-30 visit with Daniels. I think they're fine with whichever one falls to them."

The Patriots also visited with Michigan's J.J. McCarthy, who's increasingly become a top-10 projection, but the team appears more focused on Daniels and Maye as possibilities at No. 3, per Schrager. The latest on New England's apparent preferences comes hours after reports indicated Daniels has become a strong betting favorite to be the second quarterback taken in the first round.