By Tom E. Curran
FOXBORO - Mike Teel was unemployed for fewer than 48 hours. The former Rutgers quarterback, released by the Pete Carroll-led new regime in Seattle on May 19, signed with the Patriots on the 21st.
Today, he was 3,500 miles east of Seattle in another conference and a far different circumstance.
"It's another opportunity for me," said Teel, 24. "I can control what I can control. I'm going to come in here and learn the playbook."
The 6-foot-3, 230-pound Teel was a sixth-round pick out of Rutgers where he played for Greg Schiano, a coach Bill Belichick's become close to in recent years. Teel was a two-time captain at Rutgers and threw 45 touchdowns and 26 picks in his final two seasons at Rutgers.
He performed well in preseason games last year for the Seahawks (20 of 41 for 238 and 3 TDs), but never got in a regular-season game.
"Mentally, I've learned the game," Teel said when asked how he's grown since leaving Rutgers. "The systems are a little different [between Seattle and New England] but defenses don't change. You learn how to read the defenses and understand schemes and what they try to do to an offense. From that aspect I've definitely improved since I came out of college. [Now] it's time to learn the system and go out and play quarterback."
Brian Hoyer figures to be the backup to Tom Brady this season, but the speed with which the Pats jumped on Teel may indicate an interest in him that gives him a decent shot at beating out their own seventh-round pick, Zac Robinson, for the third QB spot.