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New England Patriots Waive Quaterbacks Bailey Zappe And Malik Cunningham

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Tuesday’s action by the New England Patriots to release backup quarterbacks Bailey Zappe and Malik Cunningham cemented Mac Jones’ position as the team’s starting quarterback and left a sizable gap in the depth chart below Jones.

The team’s sole quarterback on the roster right now is Jones.

Last season, Zappe filled in for an injured Jones in two games and helped the club to two victories. The fans in New England grew fond of him and occasionally chanted, “Zappe! Zappe! Zappe!” in anticipation of seeing more of him.

He completed 65 of 92 passes for 781 yards with five touchdowns and three interceptions while filling in last season.

Despite some speculation to the contrary, Zappe began the 2023 season as Jones’ top backup, trailing only the since-released Trace McSorley and undrafted free agent Cunningham in the depth chart.

However, the Western Kentucky quarterback selected in the fourth round of the 2022 draft played in three preseason games and finished 30-of-51 for 247 yards, one touchdown, and no interceptions. He was fired six times as well.

Zappe and Cunningham might rejoin the Patriots’ practice squad if they clear waivers.

Among those who did not anticipate Zappe’s release was longtime captain and team veteran Matthew Slater.

“Certainly something that is, I guess, surprising for a lot of us, but that’s just the nature of the business,” he said. “I love Bailey. He knows how I feel about him. He’s one of my favorite kids of all time.”

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