The New England Patriots finally appear ready to bench Mac Jones and let Bailey Zappe take the reins of the offense when they face the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 13.

But Zappe might not be the only one taking snaps for the Patriots on Sunday.

The Athletic’s Jeff Howe reported Friday night, citing league sources, that not only will Zappe start, but the Patriots will have an interesting game plan wrinkle by having a package of plays ready for quarterback/wide receiver Malik Cunningham.

Cunningham, who currently is on the Patriots practice squad, would need to be elevated to the gameday roster or signed to the 53-man roster to dress against the Chargers. If that happens, the undrafted rookie could serve as the primary backup to Zappe over Mac Jones, who could be facing an inactive status for the first time this season.

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Cunningham saw some reps at quarterback during the open media portion of practice Wednesday, fueling speculation that he could get some playing time as New England’s signal-caller when the Chargers come to town. It wouldn’t be the first time Cunningham has lined up at quarterback for the Patriots this season. He played six snaps in Week 6 against the Raiders, with two of those coming at quarterback. He didn’t attempt a pass, handing off to Rhamondre Stevenson on one occasion and taking a five-yard sack.

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Cunningham also lined up as a receiver that game, and could see time there as well this week with the Patriots ruling out two pass-catchers for the contest. Cunningham told reporters last week his main focus for the majority of this season has been spent learning the receiver position and getting up to speed on special teams while reps at quarterback have been scarce in practice.

“They just always tell me with the quarterback stuff to always be ready, to keep studying the summer stuff, the weeks that I was activated, just keep studying some of that stuff so if something were to change that those would be the plays that I would run,” Cunningham told the Boston Herald’s Doug Kyed. “So, just keeping up on those plays and other than that, just keep working at my wide receiver stuff.”

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With the Patriots positioning for a better draft pick this late in the season, it won’t cause them any harm to give the Louisville product an extended look to see if he has any potential at both the quarterback and receiver positions.

Kickoff against the Chargers from Gillette Stadium is scheduled for 1 p.m. ET.

Featured image via Brian Fluharty/USA TODAY Sports Images