The 32-year-old Brister is going up to Long Island as a backup to incumbent Boomer Esiason. But people close to the situation say Kotite has made it clear to Brister that he won't hesitate to go to him if Esiason struggles. Esiason, who will turn 34 in April, finished eighth in the AFC in passing last season.
"He told me that Boomer is going to be the starter and we'll just see how it goes," Brister said. "He says he has confidence in me, and I know he does. I feel I can help them win. If not this year then maybe next year."
Brister started the final two games of the '94 season after Kotite benched starter Randall Cunningham. He completed 51 of 76 passes for 507 yards and two touchdowns. In '93, Brister started eight games for the Eagles after Cunningham went down with a season-ending leg injury. He finished fourth in the NFC in passing that year, throwing just five interceptions in 309 attempts.
"It's nice to get it out of the way early," said Brister, who thought he had a deal last year with New Orleans until the Saints changed their mind at the last minute. "It's been a hectic week, but it's been worth it. I think it's a good fit and I'll be happy up there."
With Brister gone, the only two quarterbacks the Eagles have under contract are Cunningham and last year's No. 3 quarterback, Jay Fiedler. There are several backup possibilities on the free-agent market, including Dan McGwire of Seattle, Chris Chandler of the Rams, Don Majkowski of Indianapolis and John Friesz of Washington.
Eagles coach Ray Rhodes has gone on record as saying he won't draft a quarterback in the first round of the draft.