Oct 24, 2022; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones (10) drops back to pass during the first half against the Chicago Bears at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports

Patriots QB Mac Jones named starter vs. Jets

New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones will be under center to start Sunday’s game against the New York Jets, coach Bill Belichick announced Thursday.

“Mac took a full workload (Wednesday). I expect him to be fully available here for the game and ready to go,” Belichick said Thursday.

When a reporter asked Belichick to confirm that Jones would be the starter, the coach responded with the following:

“That’s what I just said, isn’t it? He got a full load,” Belichick said.

Belichick added that Jones is getting the start because he’s fully healthy. Jones played for the first time on Monday since sustaining a high-ankle sprain on Sept. 25.

Jones was pulled after three series in the Patriots’ 33-14 loss to the Chicago Bears on Monday night. Belichick said after the game that Jones wasn’t removed for performance. However, he also said it wasn’t a medical decision.

Rookie Bailey Zappe replaced Jones and played the rest of the game, throwing for 185 yards and a touchdown with two interceptions.

The Patriots (3-4) visit the New York Jets (5-2) on Sunday.

–Field Level Media

Oct 24, 2022; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones (10) passes the ball during the first half against the Chicago Bears at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Mac Jones getting start at QB vs. Jets

New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones took most of the snaps with the first-team offense Wednesday and is in line to get the start this week against the New York Jets, ESPN reported.

Jones took 90 percent of the first-team snaps, per the report.

Jones was pulled after three series in the Patriots’ loss to the Chicago Bears on Monday night. Patriots coach Bill Belichick said after the game that Jones wasn’t removed for performance. However, he also said it wasn’t a medical decision.

Rookie Bailey Zappe replaced Jones and played the rest of the game, throwing for 185 yards and a touchdown with two interceptions.

Belichick refused to dive into “hypotheticals” Tuesday morning about which quarterback would draw the start against the Jets.

Both Belichick and Jones said the plan all along was to go with both QBs against the Bears, a notion that reportedly was news to other members of the team.

Leading to the scrutiny of a pre-plan for a two-QB night was that Jones was pulled after throwing an interception. Jones threw for just 13 yards and rushed for another 24 in his three series.

“Part of the plan, I think coach Belichick did a really really good job explaining it to me, I knew what the plan was,” Jones said Monday night. “The timing’s the timing, but we’re on the same page and there’s no hard feelings. I wish I had played better while I was in there.”

Jones was playing for the first time since Sept. 25 after sustaining a high-ankle sprain. He is not listed on this week’s injury report.

The Patriots (3-4) visit the New York Jets (5-2) on Sunday.

–Field Level Media

Patriot coaches Joe Judge and Matt Patricia confer as they talk with QN Bailey Zappe as QB Mac Jones studies his play list on his wrist after Jones was replaced by Zappe during the 2nd quarter.

15 Pats Bears 102422 Bb

Bill Belichick avoids ‘hypotheticals’ on QB situation

If the New England Patriots didn’t have a quarterback controversy before Monday night’s game, they certainly do now — and coach Bill Belichick, predictably, made no attempt to douse it the morning after.

Rookie Bailey Zappe replaced Mac Jones after three series in the Patriots’ loss to the Chicago Bears on Monday night. Jones guided New England to just 51 yards of net offense, but Belichick said after the game that Jones wasn’t removed for performance. However, he also said it wasn’t a medical decision.

Further, Belichick said Jones knew going in that he wasn’t going to play the whole game.

Belichick was asked Tuesday morning if Jones would be the starter moving forward, if healthy.

“That’s a hypothetical question,” Belichick said. “So let’s see where that is and what that is.”

Belichick was then asked if Jones was healthy enough to keep playing after 18 snaps against the Bears.

“Well, that didn’t happen,” Belichick said. “So that’s another hypothetical question.”

Zappe threw for 185 yards and a touchdown with two interceptions in relief of Jones, playing the rest of the game.

While Jones said postgame he knew the plan was for both QBs to play, Zappe wasn’t as succinct.

“If that decision was made for me to go in, then I was gonna go out there and do the best for my team,” Zappe said Monday night.

Leading to the scrutiny of a pre-plan for a two-QB night was that Jones was pulled after throwing an interception. Jones threw for just 13 yards and rushed for another 24 in his three series.

“Part of the plan, I think coach Belichick did a really really good job explaining it to me, I knew what the plan was,” Jones said. “The timing’s the timing, but we’re on the same page and there’s no hard feelings. I wish I had played better while I was in there.”

The Patriots (3-4) visit the New York Jets (5-2) in Week 8.

–Field Level Media

Oct 24, 2022; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones (10) reacts before a game against the Chicago Bears at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports

Reports: Mac Jones to start for Patriots vs. Bears

Previous starting quarterback Mac Jones will be back under center tonight for the New England Patriots against the Chicago Bears, multiple outlets reported Monday.

Jones, injured in Week 3 against the Baltimore Ravens, is currently 1-2 as the starter for the 3-3 Patriots, throwing for 786 yards with two touchdowns and five interceptions.

Third-stringer Bailey Zappe, a rookie, was 2-0 as the starter after he took over for previous backup Brian Hoyer, who was knocked out of New England’s Week 4 game against the Green Bay Packers. Zappe came on in relief to throw for 99 yards with a touchdown (107.4 rating) and has thrown for 596 yards and four touchdowns in two-plus games.

Jones, 24, was a Pro Bowler in 2021 after throwing for 3,801 yards with 22 touchdowns as a rookie.

The Pats host the Bears (2-4) on Monday Night Football in Foxborough, Mass.

–Field Level Media

Sep 25, 2022; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones (10) reacts during the first half against the Baltimore Ravens at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Pats QB Mac Jones expects to return this week

New England Patriots starting quarterback Mac Jones expects to return for the team’s Week 7 game Monday night against the Chicago Bears, ESPN reported Thursday.

Jones has missed the past three games with a high-ankle sprain he sustained Sept. 25 against Baltimore. Jones has told teammates that he has progressed, per the report.

The Patriots begin their practice week Thursday.

“We’ll see what we are actually dealing with here as we go forward,” Patriots head coach Bill Belichick told reporters Wednesday about Jones’ possible return.

Third-string rookie Bailey Zappe is 2-0 as the starter after primary backup Brian Hoyer was knocked out of the Pats’ Week 4 game against Green Bay. Zappe has thrown for 596 yards and four touchdowns in two-plus games.

Jones was 1-2 as the starter, throwing for 786 yards and two touchdowns against five interceptions. He sustained on the final play of the game in Week 3 against the Ravens.

However, The Athletic reported Thursday that Jones will return as the starter when he’s healthy, despite the speculation of a quarterback controversy.

The Jones-Zappe starting storyline comes in the aftermath of a separate report that tension is building between Jones and the Patriots.

Sports Illustrated reported that Jones has questioned the combo play-calling of Matt Patricia and Joe Judge to replace Josh McDaniels, and that the team wanted Jones to undergo surgery on his injured ankle, an idea Jones rebuffed. While the Patriots wanted Jones to have tightrope surgery to bolster the ankle, Jones opted for rehab, per SI.

The Patriots (3-3) host the Bears (2-4) on Monday night in Foxborough, Mass.

–Field Level Media

Oct 2, 2022; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA;  New England Patriots quarterback Bailey Zappe (4) throws a pass during the second quarter against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Bailey Zappe set to make first NFL start

Rookie quarterback Bailey Zappe is set to make his first NFL start for the New England Patriots in Week 5 with incumbent Mac Jones still limping from his high-ankle sprain, Pro Football Network reported Thursday.

Jones returned to practice Wednesday and was listed as limited. He reportedly is moving better and making the case that he’ll be well enough to play against the Detroit Lions on Sunday. However, he’s not considered close to being ready to return, per PFN.

A more realistic timeline for Jones is Week 6, per the report.

Primary backup Brian Hoyer is not expected to clear the concussion protocol in time for Sunday, leaving the QB duties to Zappe.

Zappe replaced Hoyer last week in the 27-24 overtime loss to the Green Bay Packers and played 74 percent of the snaps. He finished 10 of 15 for 99 yards and a touchdown pass.

Zappe is taking first-team snaps in practice this week and getting input from Jones.

“He’s been very helpful,” Zappe told reporters. “Same for me, I’ve been doing everything I can to try and help him out with everything going on. We’re just trying to be the best for the team.”

The Patriots on Wednesday signed QB Garrett Gilbert to the practice squad. Gilbert, 31, made one start with Washington last season and completed 20 of 31 passes for 194 yards, with no touchdowns and no interceptions in a 27-17 Week 15 loss at Philadelphia.

–Field Level Media

Sep 25, 2022; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones (10) is tackled by Baltimore Ravens linebacker Odafe Oweh (99) during the first half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

Patriots QB Mac Jones (ankle) practices

New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones, vying to return after missing just one game with a high-ankle sprain, practiced Wednesday.

Jones was listed as limited. Jones missed last week’s loss at Green Bay, a game that saw his backup, Brian Hoyer, leave after one possession with a concussion.

Third-string rookie Bailey Zappe completed 10 of 15 passes for 99 yards and a touchdown after relieving Hoyer in the 27-24 overtime loss to the Packers. Hoyer did not practice Wednesday.

The team officially signed QB Garrett Gilbert to the practice squad Wednesday. Gilbert, 31, made one start with Washington last season and completed 20 of 31 passes for 194 yards with no touchdowns and no interceptions in a Week 15 loss at Philadelphia.

Wide receiver Jakobi Meyers (knee) was also listed as limited after missing the past two games. He has 13 catches for 150 yards and still leads the team in targets despite missing two games. Tight end Jonnu Smith (ankle) did not participate (DNP) in practice.

Defensive linemen Lawrence Guy (shoulder) and DaMarcus Mitchell (concussion) were also DNP.

Offensive lineman Isaiah Wynn (hip) was also limited Wednesday, joining S Kyle Dugger (knee), LB Raekwon McMillan (thumb), CB Jalen Mills (hamstring) and S Adrian Phillips (ribs).

The Patriots on Wednesday also signed OL Marcus Cannon to the active roster from the practice squad. Cannon played 25 snaps against the Packers, having been elevated ahead of the game. Cannon, 34, was originally drafted by the Patriots in the fifth round of the 2011 draft out of Texas Christian. He made 69 starts for the Patriots from 2011-19.

In addition to Garrett, the Pats also signed OL Sebastian Gutierrez to the practice squad. Gutierrez signed with Denver as an undrafted free agent in 2022.

Jones was injured on the final play of the game in the Pats’ Week 3 loss to Baltimore.

Jones was brought to the ground by Calais Campbell and his ankle got caught under Campbell’s leg. Jones hopped off the field on one foot and was seen grimacing in pain on the sideline. Jones had to be carried into the locker room and was screaming in pain in the tunnel.

The Patriots (1-3) host the Detroit Lions (1-3) on Sunday.

–Field Level Media

Aug 19, 2022; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Bailey Zappe (4), quarterback Brian Hoyer (5), and quarterback Mac Jones (10) jog out for warm-ups before a preseason game against the Carolina Panthers at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports

Brian Hoyer preparing to lead Patriots if QB Mac Jones can’t play

Brian Hoyer lined up under center with New England’s starters at Wednesday’s practice, but coach Bill Belichick is not ready to eliminate Mac Jones from the Patriots’ gameplan Sunday at Green Bay.

Belichick said Wednesday that Jones was a longshot to practice the next two days due to an ankle sprain suffered in the Week 3 loss to the Baltimore Ravens. Belichick said he saw Jones before meeting the media at Noon ET on Wednesday and said the quarterback is “getting better” with noteworthy progress the past two days.

“We’ll take it day by day,” Belichick said.

Hoyer, 36, might take every practice rep this week and still not start against the Packers, Belichick said.

Perturbed by pressing questions about the nature of Jones’ injury and hypotheticals for the week, Belichick asked the room, “What do I look like, a doctor? An orthopedic surgeon? Do you want me to read the MRI?”

Quarterbacks coach Joe Judge said Hoyer prepares diligently and wouldn’t be surprised to be on the field this week for his 40th career start.

“He’s always ready to take that next snap when he’s called on,” Judge said.

Fourth-round pick Bailey Zappe would likely serve as the No. 2 quarterback if Hoyer is called upon.

Hoyer has appeared in 75 career games and started one game with the Patriots (2020). He is 16-23 as a starter and has thrown for 10,631 yards and 53 touchdowns with seven teams.

–Field Level Media

Sep 25, 2022; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones (10) throws the ball against the Baltimore Ravens during the second half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Patriots QB Mac Jones (ankle) getting second opinion

New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones is heading to New York for a second opinion on his sprained ankle, NFL Network reported Tuesday.

Jones is expected to see Dr. Martin O’Malley at the New York Hospital for Special Surgery. O’Malley has expertise in sports injuries of the foot and ankle, including reconstructive surgery.

The second opinion is to help determine, in part, whether Jones will need surgery for the injury, which reportedly is a high ankle sprain. The Patriots have yet to reveal an official diagnosis.

After tossing an interception on the final play of New England’s 37-26 loss to the Baltimore Ravens, Jones was brought to the ground by Calais Campbell and his ankle got caught under Campbell’s leg. Jones hopped off the field on one foot and was seen grimacing in pain on the sideline.

Jones had to be carried into the locker room and was screaming in pain in the tunnel.

Jones completed 22 of 32 passes for 321 yards and three interceptions against the Ravens. He also rushed for 31 yards and a touchdown.

Brian Hoyer is the Patriots’ backup QB and 2022 fourth-round pick Bailey Zappe is also on the 53-man roster. New England (1-2) plays at Green Bay (2-1) on Sunday.

–Field Level Media

Patriots Mac Jones under pressure in the 2nd quarter scrambled to a touchdown for the New England Patriots.   [The Providence Journal / Kris Craig]

Bill Belichick: No update on status of QB Mac Jones

New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick said Monday that he didn’t have an update on the status of quarterback Mac Jones, who was injured on the final play of Sunday’s loss.

Multiple outlets reported that Jones suffered a high ankle sprain and that he would undergo an MRI on Monday. Initial X-rays came back negative.

“Just quickly on Mac, really no update on him. We’ll go through the process and see where things are this morning, but nothing definitive at this point,” Belichick told reporters Monday.

He added that he would not “speculate wildly” about the status of Jones ahead of Week 4.

After tossing an interception on the final play of the Pats’ 37-26 loss to the Baltimore Ravens, Jones was brought to the ground by Calais Campbell and his ankle got caught under Campbell’s leg. Jones hopped off the field on one foot and was seen grimacing in pain on the sideline.

Boston Sports Journal reported that Jones had to be carried into the locker room and was screaming in pain in the tunnel.

Jones completed 22 of 32 passes for 321 yards and three interceptions against the Ravens. He also rushed for 31 yards and a touchdown.

Brian Hoyer is the Patriots’ backup quarterback. New England (1-2) plays at Green Bay (2-1) on Sunday.

–Field Level Media