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Mac Jones, Mike Gesicki participate in latest Patriots offseason throwing session

New England’s offense is doing some work before the official start of the offseason workout program.

New England Patriots Practice Photo by Matt Stone/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald via Getty Images

The New England Patriots will not start their offseason program until next week, but several members of their offense have already begun working out together. The latest such gathering took place at the South Walpole Community Athletic Complex on Wednesday.

Quarterbacks Mac Jones and Bailey Zappe headlined a group that also included tight end Mike Gesicki and wide receiver Tyquan Thornton, according to a report by long-time Patriots beat reporter Mike Giardi.

Jones has been the subject of multiple rumors this offseason, but has continued to prepare in his usual manner. He was one of only a handful of players to remain in the area for virtually all of the offseason, and has been spotted daily at the Patriots’ Gillette Stadium facility.

The former first-round draft pick is trying to bounce back from a disappointing sophomore season. Not only did he miss time with a high ankle sprain, he also looked visibly uncomfortable trying to adapt to a new-look offense run by assistant coaches Matt Patricia and Joe Judge. The Patriots brought in veteran offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien to help get Jones and the entire offense back on track.

As part of this process, the team also added Mike Gesicki to the mix. A productive player for the Miami Dolphins, he joined the team on a one-year, $4.5 million contract in free agency. Gesicki projects as a starter-level option alongside Hunter Henry, even though he is really more of a big slot receiver than a true tight end.

Bailey Zappe and Tyquan Thornton, meanwhile, are trying to make the famous second-year jump in 2023.

Zappe was a fourth-round pick a year ago, who unexpectedly had to start two games with Jones and No. 2 Brian Hoyer injured. Now that Hoyer has been released, he is the current second option on the depth chart behind Jones.

Second-round selection Thornton showed some promise as a rookie, but was far from a regular contributor and ended up playing half of the team’s offensive snaps. A rotational WR3/WR4 by season’s end, he touched the ball 25 times in 13 games for 263 yards and three scores. The hope is that he will carve out a more prominent role this year.

Jones, Zappe, Gesicki and Thornton are expected to be among the players kicking off New England’s offseason workout program next week. Phase 1, which focuses on strength and conditioning work, will start Monday, Apr. 17.