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Teammates praise Patriots quarterback Bailey Zappe for his performance in Green Bay: ‘It speaks volumes’

Related: New England falls to Green Bay 27-24 in overtime

New England Patriots v Green Bay Packers Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

With Mac Jones still in Foxboro nursing an ankle injury and Brian Hoyer departing to the locker room in the first quarter with a head injury, the New England Patriots were forced to turn to fourth-round rookie Bailey Zappe at the quarterback position on Sunday.

Zappe kept New England in the game against Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers. The rookie completed 10 of 15 passes for 99 yards and a touchdown, including a 25-yard touchdown toss to DeVante Parker. The impressive performance caught the attention of his teammates.

“I just wanna give a huge shoutout to Zappe, man,” Matthew Judon said postgame. “The way he stepped up in that game. I don’t believe he even took that man reps with the [first-team offense]. And the way he played, the poise he had — that’s amazing for a rookie. That’s good for our team. But just big shout-outs to him for being ready.”

Zappe’s first professional snap came backed up at the New England eight-yard line with the Packer faithful at full blast shortly behind him. While it was an easy situation to loss his composure, Zappe stayed calm and poised.

“Very impressed. For him to come into this situation, in this place with all the mystique and, you know, Aaron Rodgers being on the other side of the field, he just controlled the controllables,” captain Matthew Slater said.

“He stayed poised. He did what he was asked to do. And it speaks volumes to him being a professional and being ready to go. I mean, this is the first time he’s been active all season, and then you throw him into that situation and he doesn’t flinch.”

Zappe spent the first three weeks of the season on the healthy inactive list. And while it obviously wasn't all perfect in an impossible spot, it was hard to ask for much more from the rookie.

“Proud of the way he competed,” captain David Andrews said. “Went really quickly from probably thinking he wasn’t playing much this year, to getting thrown in the mix in a pretty hostile environment against a really good defense. I thought he led us well, thought he did a really good job.”

With Hoyer and Jones’ status seemingly up in the air, New England could again be with Zappe next week against the Detroit Lions. Sitting at 1-3, the Patriots will need a win to avoid getting buried in the playoff picture early in the season.