The New England Patriots are making a quarterback change. They will not start Mac Jones as they have in past weeks, but instead, will start Bailey Zappe, according to Jeff Howe of the Athletic. The Patriots play the Chargers this weekend and will head to face the Steelers on Thursday Night Football shortly after that. But the quarterback position has been in turmoil for the entire season as the Patriots have failed to find any clear answers.
During practice on Wednesday, Jones was reportedly watching while Zappe and rookie Malik Cunningham worked during individual drills. It is unknown if Jones will be the backup for Zappe, but Cunningham has an intriguing skillset that could mean he could be thrust into the spot if head coach Bill Belichick is not happy with what he sees.
The Steelers are 7-4 and hoping to knock off the 2-win Cardinals before facing the Patriots. But their recent quarterback schedules have been rather soft, with Jake Browning last week. Kyler Murray will give them more of a test this week, but whoever ends up starting for the Patriots, it should not be expected that that quarterback will be slinging the ball all over the yard. They need to focus on stopping the run and beating up on a Patriots defense that has been turbulent at best.
Jones has struggled after having a promising rookie season in the NFL. Meanwhile, Zappe and Jones have flip-flopped in games before, but this is the first time that Zappe is outright getting the week’s prep and preparing to start against the Chargers. What it will be like next Thursday remains to be seen.