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Bailey Zappe: Clear who is starting, but up to Bill Belichick to announce it

Bailey Zappe was at the podium for a press conference on Tuesday and that’s a pretty good sign about who the Patriots plan to start at quarterback against the Steelers on Thursday night, but Zappe wasn’t willing to confirm that he’ll be back in the saddle this week.

Zappe replaced Mac Jones at halftime of Week 12 and started the Patriots’ 6-0 loss to the Chargers in Week 13. The score shows that the Patriots didn’t have anything much going offensively during the game, but that was also true with Jones under center so it stands to reason Zappe will get another start.

Zappe told reporters Tuesday that head coach Bill Belichick has made the team’s choice clear to players before deferring to Belichick when it comes to the kind of official proclamation that he has avoided making about his quarterback in recent weeks.

“Coach has made it pretty clear, but I’ll let him announce it to everybody. That’s private right now, but whenever he announces it that’s with him,” Zappe said, via

The Patriots elevated Malik Cunningham against the Chargers and Jones was also active, but neither of them got into the game.