In the open sessions of organized team activities, Mac Jones has looked like the no-doubt starting quarterback of the New England Patriots.

But one NFL writer suggested a way to give Jones even more job security and stop him from having to peak over his shoulder at other quarterbacks behind him on the depth chart. The best way to do that? Trade Bailey Zappe.

Bleacher Report’s Kristopher Knox suggested one player each NFL team should trade prior to the start of the 2023 season and landed on Zappe being the trade candidate for the Patriots. This is his reasoning for wanting to ship Zappe from New England:

The Patriots hired an experienced play-caller in Bill O’Brien this offseason, which should help (Mac) Jones return to form. New England should consider doubling down on Jones by removing Zappe as a potential threat to his job security. … As the old saying goes, if you have two quarterbacks, you don’t truly have one. While New England could consider moving Jones instead of Zappe, it would have a hard time getting fair compensation after his sophomore regression. Getting a middle-round pick back for Zappe, who was himself a fourth-round selection, wouldn’t be as difficult.

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Quarterbacks are always valuable, and Zappe showed promise, going 2-0 and posting a 100.9 passer rating. Belichick has a history of trading backups who have flashed — like Matt Cassel, Jacoby Brissett and Jimmy Garoppolo — and could do the same with Zappe.

It would be difficult to imagine Bill Belichick pulling the trigger on trading Zappe. Given the reported uneven nature of the relationship between Jones and Belichick, it seems like he would want to keep Zappe as insurance in case Jones struggles again in 2023.

That’s not out of the realm of possibility despite the strides the Patriots made this offseason to try to improve their offense, most notably by bringing in O’Brien to run the offense. The production from Jones, who went 6-8 last season while passing for 2,997 yards with 14 touchdowns and 11 interceptions, dipped considerably last season compared to his rookie campaign and he’ll look to bounce back with the Patriots having a hellacious start to their schedule.

And if Jones can’t get back on track, Patriots fans could start clamoring for Zappe, who tossed five touchdowns and three interceptions in four appearances as a rookie.

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For Belichick and the Patriots, the only real way to prevent a possible quarterback controversy this season just might be to trade Zappe.

Featured image via David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports Images