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Who would have thought that heading into Week 5, the only healthy quarterback on the New England Patriots roster would be rookie Bailey Zappe? With Mac Jones out last week with an ankle injury, backup quarterback Brian Hoyer suffered a head injury against the Green Bay Packers and was replaced by Zappe.

Zappe held his own and helped guide the Patriots to overtime before the Packers escaped with a 27-24 victory. Now with their quarterback situation in shambles, the Patriots are reportedly turning to an old friend.

The New England Patriots are expected to sign Garrett Gilbert

Gilbert is no stranger to the Patriots. Should he return, it would be his third stint with the team. He was on the practice squad the year the Pats defeated the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl 49. He was also on the practice squad last season.

There has been no update on the status of Jones, who hobbled off the field on the final series of New England’s loss to the Baltimore Ravens in Week 3. The Patriots ruled Jones out on Friday.

Hoyer got the start in Green Bay and was knocked out in the first quarter. That left New England with Zappe, a 2022 fourth-round pick out of Western Kentucky. Zappe more than held his own, completing 10 of 15 passes for 99 yards and a touchdown. His touchdown pass to DeVante Parker gave the Patriots, heavy underdogs, a 17-14 lead in the third quarter. Green Bay won in overtime.

With their quarterback situation in flux, NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reported Tuesday that the Patriots are expected to sign Gilbert.

“The #Patriots are expected to sign QB Garrett Gilbert to the practice squad, per source,” he tweeted. “With Mac Jones (high ankle sprain) and Brian Hoyer (concussion) both dealing with injuries, the only healthy QB on the roster is rookie Bailey Zappe.”

Gilbert has made two starts in his NFL career

Garrett Gilbert of the Washington Football Team passes the ball against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field on December 21, 2021, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. | Mitchell Leff/Getty Images.

Mac Jones Is Already a Master of the Patriot Way

The St. Louis Rams selected Gilbert in the sixth round of the 2014 NFL Draft. He was released by the Rams that year, and the Patriots picked him up for their practice squad in December 2014.

Gilbert, the son of former NFL quarterback Gale Gilbert, has appeared in games for four NFL teams — the Carolina Panthers, Cleveland Browns, Dallas Cowboys, and the Washington Football Team.

Washington signed Gilbert last year when its top two quarterbacks went down with injury. He made one start for Washington against the Philadelphia Eagles. In that game, he completed 20 of 31 passes for 194 yards.

Gilbert is 0-2 in his NFL career as a starter. He also started for the Cowboys in 2020, going 21-for-38 for 243 yards. He threw the lone touchdown pass of his career with the Cowboys.

The Patriots are 1-3 this year and have had some trouble moving the ball through the air. With Jones out, they’ve turned to a strong ground game featuring Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson. They’ve had a brutal four-game schedule, playing three games on the road.

The schedule gets much easier the next several weeks. They host the Detroit Lions this week and then face the Cleveland Browns, Chicago Bears, New York Jets, Indianapols Colts, and the Jets again.

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