NFL Rumors: Patriots to start QB3 Again in Week 6

The New England Patriots will be without their top two quarterbacks yet again when they face off against the Cleveland Browns in Week 6. According to Pro Football Network's Aaron Wilson, the Patriots are poised to start rookie Bailey Zappe for a second straight week. The news comes despite Patriots opening day starter Mac Jones being listed as questionable on the team's Friday injury report. Jones was a limited participant in all three practices this week as he continues to recover from a Week 3 high-ankle sprain.

Zappe has played extensively over the past two weeks due to Jones' injury and the concussion suffered by backup Brian Hoyer in the first quarter of the team's Week 4 loss against the Green Bay Packers. After a rough first appearance, Zappe distinguished himself last week, netting 188 yards on 21 pass attempts in a dominant 29-0 win over the Detroit Lions. Zappe joined the Patriots as their 137th overall pick in this year's Draft. He has a slightly more substantial resume than most rookie third-string quarterbacks: the fourth-round pick was the Conference USA Player of the Year in 2021, passing for 5967 yards and 62 touchdowns in 14 appearances.

Given the Patriots have remained competitive under Zappe during Jones' absence, it would make sense to exercise caution with their franchise passer. Jones had struggled even when healthy, tossing five interceptions and managing only a 76.2 passer rating in his three starts this season.  
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