Forget starting. Mac Jones might not even be active for the New England Patriots on Sunday.

The struggling quarterback ran the scout team offense during Wednesday’s practice, according to Mark Daniels of MassLive. Daniels’ intel builds off additional reporting that sophomore Bailey Zappe will start in Sunday’s home game against the Chargers, with rookie Malik Cunningham potentially seeing a role, as well.

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Now, it’s possible the Patriots put Jones on the scout team simply because he’d give the best Justin Herbert-like look to New England’s defense. Daniels noted that Jones’ “primary job” was to run the Los Angeles offense, something he likely can do a better job of than practice squadders Cunningham and Will Grier.

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However, the demotion also could be a sign that Jones will be a healthy scratch this Sunday. He could be listed as the emergency third quarterback, which was Grier’s designation in multiple games this season after working with the scout team.

To be clear, this is just speculation. But it wouldn’t be a surprising outcome for Jones, who’s been benched in four games this season.

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At this point, there seems to be little doubt that Jones won’t start this Sunday. The only remaining question is whether he’ll even be the top backup.

Featured image via Kevin R. Wexler/USA TODAY Sports Images