It looks like Jarrett Stidham's first career NFL start may have to wait at least until next season.
No official announcement has been made just yet, but head coach Bill Belichick seems to be leaning toward Cam Newton as his starting quarterback for Sunday's Week 17 finale vs. the New York Jets. He was asked Tuesday on WEEI's "Ordway, Merloni & Fauria" whether he'd once again be rolling with Newton.
“I would imagine, but hey we’re going through that now. We'll see," Belichick said.
Newton threw for only 34 yards in Monday night's blowout loss to the Buffalo Bills before being replaced by Stidham in the third quarter. Stidham didn't do anything special during his appearance either as he completed only four of his 11 passes for 44 yards in mop-up duty.
Many are lobbying for the 2019 fourth-round draft pick to start rather than enter the second half of a game that's well out of reach. But when it was brought up that the Patriots likely wouldn't learn anything new about Stidham by starting him vs. the Jets, Belichick seemed to agree.
“I think there would be some truth to that," Belichick said.
“At some point he will get an opportunity to play with a good opportunity to prepare and play, and that will be a better evaluation. Whatever point that is, I don’t know.”
The Patriots will host the Jets on Sunday at 1 p.m. ET. If Newton indeed gets the start, there's a solid chance Stidham enters in relief as he has in two of the last three weeks.