In a surprising turn of events as they trimmed their roster to 53 players, the New England Patriots have made noteworthy decisions, raising eyebrows among fans and analysts alike. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Media, the Patriots have waived backup quarterback Bailey Zappe, a move that comes as a surprise given Zappe’s previous contributions to the team.
Additionally, Jeff Howe of TheAthletic.com reports that Malik Cunningham, who had taken snaps at quarterback during the summer, has also been waived. As a result of these moves, the Patriots’ quarterback lineup is now centered solely around Mac Jones, as the team previously cut Trace McSorley on Monday, leaving them with limited options at the position.
Bailey Zappe, a fourth-round pick in the previous year’s draft, showcased promise during his rookie season by participating in four games with two starts. He displayed solid performance by completing 71 percent of his passes, accumulating 781 passing yards, five touchdowns, and three interceptions, culminating in an impressive 100.9 passer rating.
Patriots’ Quarterback Situation Faces Uncertainty After Surprising Roster Decisions
However, it was the preseason performances what ultimately led to their releases. Zappe completed 59 percent of his passes for 253 yards, one touchdown, and zero interceptions, evidently not securing his position as the Patriots’ No. 2 quarterback for the upcoming 2023 season.
Malik Cunningham, an undrafted free agent hailing from Louisville, also faced an unexpected exit from the team. While his passing and rushing attempts showcased his versatility, including 3-of-6 passing for 19 yards and 39 rushing yards on six carries, it appears that his contributions were not enough to secure a roster spot.
With only one quarterback, the Patriots are now presented with the task of scouring the waiver wire and exploring potential trades in order to secure a backup for Mac Jones in the coming days. These surprising moves have injected an element of uncertainty into the Patriots’ quarterback situation, and everyone will be watching closely as the team navigates this unexpected context.