Unless you are of the opinion that Brian Hoyer is not just a stopgap solution in the event Tom Brady goes down to an injury but a legitimate successor, this discussion is not for you.

However, the likely scenario is that the Patriots will be looking for a long-term answer as Brady’s heir apparent at quarterback in the 2018 draft. If they can find a way to strike gold again and land the next Jimmy Garoppolo, the Patriots will be happy.

The great unknown is where the Pats will be picking, so not all of the college ranks’ current top prospects are realistic choices. Also, some are underclassmen who might not declare. But until we know more in those respects, here — in alphabetical order — are the players we consider to be the top 10 prospects at the position:

Josh Allen
Junior, 6-foot-5, 234 pounds, Wyoming
Skinny: Don’t be fooled by his mediocre stats this season, as Allen’s supporting cast took a step back from last year. A former teammate of Pats rookie tight end Jacob Hollister, Allen is a big-time talent with a howitzer for an arm and enough mobility to keep plays alive. He’s drawn comparisons to Carson Wentz, so use that as a ceiling for now. The floor consists of his tendency to force balls into places he shouldn’t because of an overconfidence in his arm strength.

J.T. Barrett
Senior, 6-1, 223, Ohio State
Skinny: Few would have listed Barrett a month ago, but he is playing his way into consideration. The obvious detractions are Barrett’s height and less-than-stellar consistency, but when he’s on, he can be quite effective. In last weekend’s win over Penn State, he outdueled Trace McSorely, who narrowly misses top-10 status. Barrett completed 33-of-39 passes for 328 yards and four touchdowns, including a perfect fourth quarter without an incompletion in the 39-38 win.