FOXBORO, Mass. — Who is starting at quarterback for the New England Patriots this week? Bill Belichick isn’t interested in revealing that information.
During his Wednesday afternoon news conference, Belichick again declined to name a starter for Sunday’s short-week matchup with the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium.
“We’ll see how it goes here today,” the Patriots head coach said before his team’s first practice of Week 8.
Belichick offered an identical response to multiple follow-up questions, including one on whether he plans to employ another quarterback rotation and another on what he needs to see from Mac Jones in practice in order to make a final decision.
“Look, we’re not doing anything here,” he said. “We haven’t practiced. We’re going to go out, and we’re going to see how it goes today. All right?”
Belichick was asked whether he needs to concern himself with Jones’ confidence after the starting QB was booed by the Gillette Stadium crowd and then replaced by Bailey Zappe in the second quarter of Monday night’s 33-14 loss to the Chicago Bears. Jones had missed the previous three games with a high ankle sprain, and his removal — which Belichick said was pre-planned and not due to poor performance — came after he threw an ugly interception to end New England’s third offensive drive.
“We’ll get the team ready to play,” Belichick said.
Though Belichick informed Jones and Zappe that both signal-callers would play against Chicago, multiple offensive players said they were unaware of that plan. Belichick was asked whether he feels the need to address the team about the QB situation this week.
“Yeah, we’ll deal with it,” he replied.
Are Jones and Zappe in a competition for the starting job?
“I wouldn’t say that,” Belichick said.
The Patriots will hold an indoor walkthrough Wednesday, then practice again Thursday and Friday before traveling to New York. The upstart Jets sit at 5-2 on the season, two games ahead of the 3-4 Patriots in the AFC East standings.
“We’re just getting ready for the Jets,” Belichick said in response to several additional questions about his quarterbacks.