Bailey Zappe, QB (NE)

Ready to compete if opportunity knocks

Zappe indicated that he'll be ready if presented with the opportunity to compete with Mac Jones for the Patriots' starting QB job, Eric Edholm of reports. "If my opportunity presents itself, I'm going to take full advantage of it," Zappe noted Wednesday. "I'm going to do everything I can to help the team win. That's really all I can say from that standpoint. That's coach (Bill) Belichick's decision, whatever he decides. But if the opportunity presents itself, I'm going to be ready and take advantage of it."

As a rookie, Zappe started two games while Jones dealt with an ankle injury, and overall the 2022 fourth-rounder recorded 65 completions on 92 passing attempts for 781 yards with five TDs and three picks in four appearances. Given that Belichick declined last month to specifically confirm Jones as the Patriots' starter this coming season, there's been speculation that Zappe could make a run at the job this summer. However, Mike Reiss of relays via team sources that the Patriots appear committed to seeing if Jones can get back on track after an uneven 2022 campaign while at the same time being amenable to Zappe pushing the 2021 first-rounder in his third season as a pro. In any case, following the offseason departure of Brian Hoyer, Jones and Zappe are currently the top two quarterbacks on New England's roster, with the team likely to add depth at the position in the coming weeks and months.

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