Get ready for Mitchell Trubisky vs. Bailey Zappe in primetime.

Steelers starting quarterback Kenny Pickett will miss Pittsburgh’s Thursday night matchup with the New England Patriots at Acrisure Stadium, according to multiple reports Sunday night.

The ankle injury that knocked Pickett out of his team’s 24-10 loss to the Cardinals on Sunday reportedly will require surgery and sideline him for multiple games.

Trubisky is expected to start in Pickett’s place. The former Chicago Bear went 11-for-17 for 117 yards and a touchdown in relief against Arizona.

Story continues below advertisement

The Patriots defeated a Trubisky-led Steelers team early last season, winning 17-14 in Pittsburgh. Trubisky also lost to New England once during his Bears tenure.

No Matchup Found

Click here to enter a different Sportradar ID.

    What do you think?  Leave a comment.

In theory, facing a backup QB should increase the Patriots’ chances of snapping their current five-game losing streak. But they couldn’t beat Colts second-stringer Gardner Minshew in Week 10 or Giants third-stringer Tommy DeVito in Week 12.

New England held both of those teams to 10 points but lost because of its anemic offense, which scored just six points against Indianapolis and seven against New York. That trend continued Sunday with the Los Angeles Chargers blanking the Patriots 6-0 at Gillette Stadium. They became the first team since 1938 to allow 10 or fewer points in three straight games and lose all three.

Story continues below advertisement

The Patriots rank last in the NFL in scoring at 12.3 points per game. No team has averaged fewer than 13 points per game over a full season since the 2011 St. Louis Rams.

Despite losing Pickett, the 7-5 Steelers still opened as six-point home favorites over the 2-10 Patriots. New England benefited from Pittsburgh’s upset loss to Arizona, as it put Bill Belichick’s club on track to land the No. 2 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft. The 3-10 Cardinals dropped to No. 3.

Belichick would not confirm which QB will start for New England on “Thursday Night Football.” Zappe did so Sunday for the first time this season, replacing the ineffective Mac Jones. The second-year pro completed 13 of 25 passes for 141 yards and added 16 rushing yards in the shutout loss.

Jones and rookie Malik Cunningham both dressed as backups, but neither saw playing time.

Story continues below advertisement

Featured image via Philip G. Pavely/USA TODAY Sports Images