Bill Belichick left the door open Monday for a potential change at starting quarterback. But that was the extent of his hospitality.
The New England Patriots head coach was asked Wednesday morning if his team is sticking with Cam Newton at QB for Monday's game against the Buffalo Bills or if backup Jarrett Stidham might see some action.
Belichick's response was rather Scrooge-like.
"We’re not answering the question every day," Belichick said. "We’ve been going over this every day for a month."
When it was pointed out that the Patriots' situation has changed after they were eliminated from playoff contention Sunday, Belichick snapped:
"How about I let you know if we’re making a change?"
And after one more follow-up question -- whether he was playing his cards close to the vest due to competitive reasons -- the Patriots coach put his foot down.
"Any questions on Buffalo?"
Check out the full exchange in the video player above.
With the postseason officially out of reach, it makes sense for New England to see what it has in Stidham. Even if Belichick is solely committed to winning, the Patriots haven't scored a touchdown since Week 13 with Newton under center, and his limitations as a passer have made the offense untenably one-dimensional.
There's a chance Belichick knows all this and plans to start Stidham in Weeks 16 and 17. But he's also insisted throughout the season that Newton is the team's starter, so it wouldn't be surprising to see him stick with the 31-year-old veteran.
In any case, we'll apparently have to wait for Belichick to tell us who's starting at quarterback this week. Which means you'll probably find out when the Patriots take the field Monday night.