The Michael McCorkle "Mac" Jones Thread

Apr 24, 2019
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FLAWLESS, I can’t tell if you’re being sarcastic or not, and I’m not sure why you would be, so I’m “super interested” in giving you the benefit of the doubt. I’m not bashing Zappe, and today he showed even more than the dink and dunk managing he displayed - impressively, admirably - in his first two games. He’s been terrific, way more than expected. But I would say that Mac has been asked to push the ball down the field more aggressively (it happened to come against against superior competition), take more chances on longer throws and into tighter windows. Evan Lazar had a good section of last week’s UPON FURTHER REVIEW column. Here it is if you’re interested.

https://www.patriots.com/news/after-further-review-how-the-patriots-changed-offense-for-bailey-zappe
 

DJnVa

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This is rich coming from a guy with 48k posts and on his original screen name after like 3 others.
You got me! If you think that dude makes the thread better, good for you. If you think I don't, there's an option to ignore me.
 

NickEsasky

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You got me! If you think that dude makes the thread better, good for you. If you think I don't, there's an option to ignore me.
I just hate thread police who aren’t mods. I’ll leave it alone.
 

Jinhocho

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I am still a Mac guy (in the sense that I think he’s much more likely than Zappe to develop into a QB who they can win a SB with, so they have to ride him when he’s healthy to see if he can show progress in Year 2). That said, Mac and his 1 season plus 3 games of NFL experience questioning BB’s picks for his coaching staff is kind of wild (even though we’ve had plenty of discussion of it here). It’s one thing for fans to grumble, its another for a 2nd year QB to question decisions made by his coach when the coach is the greatest coach of all time. But, I bet the report is made up bullshit.
This to me is one of the most insightful things I've read in the last year or so. You can save that for later Ralph to just bring up down the line when I say you said something stupid lol.

I've been proceeding all along just thinking that Mac is the guy. They drafted them higher, he played really well last year, and I have not really lost confidences in his ability as a football player despite some early season struggles. I often laughed on here to people going on about how the paths were going to suck and they be truly terrible and we ought to get rid of belichick and so on, but I guess I never really gave enough credence to the idea of bourne and Jones criticizing the coaching staff. Bourne to me just seemed like a disgruntled receiver. There's a lot of variability in guys who have a good season or who flash really well for a while and then feed for a bit so I didn't take it that seriously, but Ralph's comments caused me to think back about some of the things Mac has said during training camp and early in the season. It really is bold as brass for a second year quarterback who has never won a playoff game to be questioning BB and his vision for the Patriots. Not sure how I let that one slide by me, but we all know that in New England it's BB show and and players who do that kind of stuff usually don't end up here long-term. He looks for guys who will buy into his system and his vision even as that system changes. I still think Mac is the guy and that his future is bright in New England, but in hindsight this really really jumps out to me now is something that could be a complicating factor. Anyway thanks for pointing this out in a way that even a moron unlike me can understand :)
 

tims4wins

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Are we sure that means that’s what he was being asked to do, though? Or were those decisions he was making going through his reads?
Can’t prove anything, but Mac strikes me as the type of guy who would try to do exactly as the coaching staff asks. Also, he doesn’t call / design the running plays, or picks when to use play action.
Additionally, play action under Jones was around 12% and it was 35% for Zappe.
Yeah I mentioned play action
 

Arroyoyo

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I just hate thread police who aren’t mods. I’ll leave it alone.
Not to mention: I’m talking about Zappe and Jones. I post on this forum maybe 1-2 days a week, at most.

Out of nowhere, he veered off of the conversation to take a meaningless shot at me. Viewing his posts, I can see he’s spent the last three weeks dumping on Zappe so I understand why today’s performance may be pulling the worst out of “DJnVa.”

Unfortunate. Fortunately, lurkers have a “Block” option, too.
 

Arroyoyo

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Can’t prove anything, but Mac strikes me as the type of guy who would try to do exactly as the coaching staff asks. Also, he doesn’t call / design the running plays, or picks when to use play action.
Yeah I mentioned play action
Yeah, I understand this sentiment. I don’t think you’re wrong to think he’s mostly been doing what he’s been asked, but I just can’t help but wonder if this year he’s wanting to air it out more after hearing a lot of criticism in the media about being a check down quarterback last year.

But it’s impossible for us to know, it seems. Just makes me wonder why he’s been reportedly butting heads with coaches so much.
 

DJnVa

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I can see he’s spent the last three weeks dumping on Zappe so I understand why today’s performance may be pulling the worst out of “DJnVa.”
LOL. No I haven't. I love Zappe.

Zappe is a fun story and I hope he does well, but the offense Zappe is running now won't keep up with Buffalo and KC.
You can also look in the Zappe thread where I posted a defense of Zappe when someone said his throws didn't have enough zip on them.

I'm just pushing back at the narrative that this is the same offense Jones has run AND that this is the same thing as Brady/Bledsoe.

But yeah, I shouldn't have take a personal shot. You're right.
 

DJnVa

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He literally does it all over the board. So yes. You’d be hard pressed to find many examples of me doing it in 20 years here.
Another Jones/Zappe thread turns tragic.

Look, you are right that I shouldn't have attacked the poster. I'll leave it at that.
 

ponch73

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It's definitely fair to consider Zappe's performance thus far in the context of facing weaker opponents than Mac. But I'm not sure that 2022 Mac would have perfectly replicated Zappe's numbers against the Lions and Browns either.

For example, I don't think Mac completes the 1st quarter TD pass to Henry (that was negated by the illegal touching penalty) or the 3rd quarter TD pass to Thornton because he doesn't have the same poise in the pocket. On the former play, I think Mac either throws the ball just after Henry flashes open and ends up getting the ball deflected by 60 on the Browns who was reading the QB's eyes or throws the ball away after getting flushed out of the pocket. On the latter play, I think Mac goes to his first read, which is Meyers on the right side of the field instead of holding the ball and waiting for the second read, Thornton, to get separation. Just my humble opinion, it's possible I'm judging Mac too harshly.

The negated Henry TD comes at 1:58 in the following Youtube 1st quarter highlight video:

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lLdMGaIUiRU


The Thornton TD comes at 1:22 in the following Youtube 3rd quarter highlight video.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gf2vq7chYO4
 
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tims4wins

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Yeah, I understand this sentiment. I don’t think you’re wrong to think he’s mostly been doing what he’s been asked, but I just can’t help but wonder if this year he’s wanting to air it out more after hearing a lot of criticism in the media about being a check down quarterback last year.

But it’s impossible for us to know, it seems. Just makes me wonder why he’s been reportedly butting heads with coaches so much.
It was brought up somewhere else, maybe upthread, but the Pats did something very similar with Brady in 2002, and that was coming off winning a title in 2001. I highly doubt he wants to throw deep because of media criticism.
 

Ralphwiggum

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One thing I know for sure going forward, Patriots fandom will be divided between Mac supporters and Zappe supporters and depending on who plays and what happens, the dialogue here (and in the sports media) is going to be borderline intolerable.

I can make a case for Mac getting his job back, I can also make a case for Zappe being the starter. I’ll defer to the GOAT coach to make that call, personally, but I‘m prepared for the fans on either side of this who are positive the best guy isn’t playing.
 

Mystic Merlin

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One thing I know for sure going forward, Patriots fandom will be divided between Mac supporters and Zappe supporters and depending on who plays and what happens, the dialogue here (and in the sports media) is going to be borderline intolerable.

I can make a case for Mac getting his job back, I can also make a case for Zappe being the starter. I’ll defer to the GOAT coach to make that call, personally, but I‘m prepared for the fans on either side of this who are positive the best guy isn’t playing.
Yeah.

It’s a great problem to have, but you are exactly right about how it’ll play out in the fanbase.
 

ponch73

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One thing I know for sure going forward, Patriots fandom will be divided between Mac supporters and Zappe supporters and depending on who plays and what happens, the dialogue here (and in the sports media) is going to be borderline intolerable.
I'm happy to put up with the borderline intolerable dialogue in exchange for continued winning by the Pats. I'm also fine with Bill benching Zappe and starting Mac as long as the victory train keeps rolling.
 

Ralphwiggum

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I'm happy to put up with the borderline intolerable dialogue in exchange for continued winning by the Pats. I'm also fine with Bill benching Zappe and starting Mac as long as the victory train keeps rolling.
I was just making an observation, if they keep winning regardless of who is playing QB the noise will go away. If they lose a couple of games, and whoever is the starter struggles, and realistically whichever guy they pick is going to struggle at some point, those who are absolutely sure that the other guy should be playing will be insufferable.
 

Euclis20

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As of two weeks ago, he hadn't even passed Brian Hoyer on the depth chart, a guy who has probably thrown his last NFL pass. I don't think it's completely out of the realm of possibility that Zappe has the starting job week 1 next season, but there's just no way that 2 good weeks of Zappe (and 3 bad weeks for Mac) is enough to toss out a really strong rookie season for last year's 15th overall pick.
 

IdiotKicker

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I think not giving Mac the job back when he’s healthy devalues everything he showed last year at the expense of a couple bad games to start this year. I also think Zappe has shown enough that if a couple bad games turns into a bad season, there’s probably an open competition next camp, because we are talking about deciding on Mac’s 5th year option by the end of next season, so if he’s not the guy, you want to make sure you have the guy in-house already or are ready to draft him.

Look, I like Zappe’s poise and pocket presence. Kid stands in there. Arm is better than I expected but still not great. Decision-making has been good. This is great to see. It’s what you want out of picks. They should push the guys on your roster. If Mac doesn’t respond to the push, then you’ve got something to think about. For now, it’s just good depth.
 

ponch73

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As of two weeks ago, he hadn't even passed Brian Hoyer on the depth chart, a guy who has probably thrown his last NFL pass. I don't think it's completely out of the realm of possibility that Zappe has the starting job week 1 next season, but there's just no way that 2 good weeks of Zappe (and 3 bad weeks for Mac) is enough to toss out a really strong rookie season for last year's 15th overall pick.
Ironically enough, they are neck and neck in per drive offensive efficiency right now (with Mac's numbers coming from a much larger sample of games). I'm really glad Bill gets paid to make these decisions.

Screen Shot 2022-10-16 at 4.48.20 PM.png

Screen Shot 2022-10-16 at 4.49.39 PM.png
 

EvilEmpire

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If BB sticks with Zappe I don't think it will be so much because of results as it is about process. If Zappe is better at making the right decisions at the right time than Jones, even if his execution right now lags a little behind where Mac is at, I think he'll keep the job. Who has the better QB brain? If BB thinks they're roughly similar in that regard, he won't.
 
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P'tucket rhymes with...

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He led the league in air target yards or whatever the term is through 3 games. He was throwing downfield a ton. They weren’t using play action at all. Their running game was different.
To my untrained, casual-fan eye, this seems to me to be not insignificant. The Browns were seeing play action a lot, and at the end of the game got so locked in on "Ram or a pass" that Thornton didn't even register a blip on their collective radar.
 

nattysez

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I don't think asking Mac to come back on MNF and then having him play his second game back on a short week makes sense. Let Mac come back well-rested against the Jets in Week 8.
 

snowmanny

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If Jones had a game where the pocket was as clean as it was for Zappe last week he'd look amazing too.

Zappe is a fun story and I hope he does well, but the offense Zappe is running now won't keep up with Buffalo and KC.
I’ve got bad news. There is no offense the Patriots can create this year that will keep up with either of those teams, no matter the quarterback or the scheme. Any win against those guys will have to come via defense, special teams, protecting the ball, smoke, and mirrors.
 

Euclis20

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Ironically enough, they are neck and neck in per drive offensive efficiency right now (with Mac's numbers coming from a much larger sample of games). I'm really glad Bill gets paid to make these decisions.

View attachment 56567

View attachment 56568
One guy's sample size is more than 6x larger than the other, plus I think it's more than a footnote that Zappe's two starts came against the 30th and 32nd ranked teams in defensive DVOA (coming into this week). Zappe has played as well as could be expected given the situation, but it's not remotely a decision (yet).
 

FL4WL3SS

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One thing I know for sure going forward, Patriots fandom will be divided between Mac supporters and Zappe supporters and depending on who plays and what happens, the dialogue here (and in the sports media) is going to be borderline intolerable.

I can make a case for Mac getting his job back, I can also make a case for Zappe being the starter. I’ll defer to the GOAT coach to make that call, personally, but I‘m prepared for the fans on either side of this who are positive the best guy isn’t playing.
Well said.

Although, isn't this what sports fandom is all about? We have our favorites and then we debate it? It's much more fun to talk about this than the latest off-field controversy.
 

DJnVa

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I’ve got bad news. There is no offense the Patriots can create this year that will keep up with either of those teams, no matter the quarterback or the scheme. Any win against those guys will have to come via defense, special teams, protecting the ball, smoke, and mirrors.
Well, today's offense had an average depth of target of 5.9 yards. We need more than that.
 

Ralphwiggum

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Well said.

Although, isn't this what sports fandom is all about? We have our favorites and then we debate it? It's much more fun to talk about this than the latest off-field controversy.
Yes I am all for good, well spirited debate. In a situation like this, though, where there isn’t a clear right answer, I personally can’t stand those who are so sure they are right. It’s an interesting situation but I’ll defer to BB who is in a much better position than me to evaluate who should be starting.
 

Salva135

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One thing I know for sure going forward, Patriots fandom will be divided between Mac supporters and Zappe supporters and depending on who plays and what happens, the dialogue here (and in the sports media) is going to be borderline intolerable.

I can make a case for Mac getting his job back, I can also make a case for Zappe being the starter. I’ll defer to the GOAT coach to make that call, personally, but I‘m prepared for the fans on either side of this who are positive the best guy isn’t playing.
Welcome to the 50% of the NFL that we've been blessed to avoid for 2 decades. Our fanbase won't be better or worse for this debate.
 

rodderick

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It's kinda simple to me: Mac has been asked to do a lot more, but he's been one of the worst QBs in football while being asked to do more. Zappe hasn't been asked to do much, but has provided them with similar level of performance Mac did when he wasn't being asked to do much. Whatever Bill decides I'm on board, not really attached to either guy and don't think there's all this extra special talent with Mac in contrast to Zappe either.
 

ponch73

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One guy's sample size is more than 6x larger than the other, plus I think it's more than a footnote that Zappe's two starts came against the 30th and 32nd ranked teams in defensive DVOA (coming into this week). Zappe has played as well as could be expected given the situation, but it's not remotely a decision (yet).
It's a fair point, but their samples with the current offensive coaching regime and roster are essentially equal. Mac played poorly against the 14th, 16th and 29th ranked defensive DVOA teams coming into this week. I wish I knew how to adjust their per drive efficiencies for strength of defense faced. How does Mac's 0.88 versus 29th ranked Miami compare with Zappe's 3.17 versus 30th ranked Cleveland? Or Zappe's 1.56 versus 23rd ranked Green Bay versus Mac's 1.89 versus 16th ranked Pittsburgh?

I'm also not sure how much weight to give to Mac's body of work last year (which was very good for a rookie QB).

It may not be a decision that Bill has to make yet, but I don't think it's premature or inappropriate for us to be able to discuss it here.
 
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nattysez

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Whatever Bill decides I'm on board, not really attached to either guy and don't think there's all this extra special talent with Mac in contrast to Zappe either.
Perfectly said. Yours is the right attitude, but there are WAY too many advertising dollars/clicks/viewers/listeners at stake for this to not get turned into the new Grogan-Eason/Brady-Bledsoe holy war by the media.
 

Cellar-Door

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Bill will go back to Mac, the only way he loses the job is if he comes back and keeps turning it over. Zappe has played well, but the gameplan has generally showed less faith in him than in Mac.
However... I do think he has done some things better than Mac, in particular I think he identifies pressure better than Mac has so far this year.

If Zappe plays well again next week (I doubt Mac is back) he still won't keep the job... if Mac returns and continues to turn it over twice a game..... he could lose the job. I doubt it, but that's the scenario for it happening... Zappe executing without turning it over, and Mac being loose with the ball.
 

brandonchristensen

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The one thing I felt watching today was ZAPPE would constantly make something out of nothing. Pocket collapse? He steps out and shakes loose and finds an open man.

So many plays that I intuitively felt were a bust he threw for a first. It was something that Brady would always do. Not comparing them of course.

Having said that - he has GOTTA stop sticking his arms out straight to pretend to hand the ball off to a ghost.
 

dirtynine

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It feels weird to have a “take” yet - to me, Mac is the starter until he shows via his play that he shouldn’t be. If you anoint Zappe, you can’t really go back to Mac without suggesting there’s no real plan. Brady made that academic (though I still vaguely remember a “should Drew start in the Super Bowl?” storyline from all those years ago), but I’m not sure Zappe would/will. If it’s closer to 50-50, I’d stick with Mac.

Watching Zappe with this offense has brought one comparison to mind, though. Mac has a lot of tennis in his background. He plays QB like a classic baseline tennis player. Doesn’t charge the net so to speak, excels at intelligence and (ostensibly) ball placement. Zappe is more dimensional/dynamic, and puts himself in positions to find angles and and make plays. So far, that has not come with increased turnover risk - but it should. If it continues not to, that’s a great sign.

I am definitely finding Zappe more fun to watch. But I suppose he could get “figured out” after a few more starts, whereas Mac has enough games under his belt that I don’t think he’s in danger of that. It’s close, but to me Mac is still the starter until he shows on the field (after his return) that he shouldn’t be.
 

Marciano490

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I don’t get this talk about Zappe being asked to do less. Our two highest point totals are the last two weeks with Zappe. If Mac could put up 29+ points with any playbook, why wouldn’t they have empowered him to do so?
 

Jimbodandy

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I don’t get this talk about Zappe being asked to do less. Our two highest point totals are the last two weeks with Zappe. If Mac could put up 29+ points with any playbook, why wouldn’t they have empowered him to do so?
Because their offensive line was shit and the play-calling and play-design was abysmal.

Zappe has hit every receiver and tight end that was wide open by miles since he got the job. He deserves credit for that. Other things have changed beside the quarterback in the last few weeks.


I trust Bill to make the right call, whatever it is, when Mac is healthy.
 

Justthetippett

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Mac has a serious injury and he likely won’t be fully healthy for weeks. If Zappe is leading them to wins (or giving them a chance against good teams), I don’t see a reason to go to Mac. If Zappe lays an egg over the next few weeks, then go back to Mac like it was the plan all along (and when he’s closer to 100%).
 

Cellar-Door

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Because their offensive line was shit and the play-calling and play-design was abysmal.

Zappe has hit every receiver and tight end that was wide open by miles since he got the job. He deserves credit for that. Other things have changed beside the quarterback in the last few weeks.


I trust Bill to make the right call, whatever it is, when Mac is healthy.
THis just isn't true. The play-calling was different, but the line was not any different, it was consistently grading out very well, Mac made it look much worse than it was.
There are some playcalling questions, but mostly... Mac didn't play well. Now also... he played much better defenses, the Lions and Browns are both bad defenses, arguably very bad which give Zappe more easy looks, partly because of how bad the coverage is, but also because they have to sell out to defend the run because they are bad run Ds as well meaning less exotic looks, more man, etc.
 

OurF'ingCity

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Mac has a serious injury and he likely won’t be fully healthy for weeks. If Zappe is leading them to wins (or giving them a chance against good teams), I don’t see a reason to go to Mac. If Zappe lays an egg over the next few weeks, then go back to Mac like it was the plan all along (and when he’s closer to 100%).
This is exactly where I come out. The fact that Zappe is at least serviceable, and they’re winning with him, means there is zero reason to rush Mac back. I wouldn’t start Mac again until he’s truly 100%.
 

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This is exactly where I come out. The fact that Zappe is at least serviceable, and they’re winning with him, means there is zero reason to rush Mac back. I wouldn’t start Mac again until he’s truly 100%.
I totally agree with this. Frankly, I like both of these guys. Worst case, they went from the worst backup in the league to one of the best. Let Mac fully heal and enjoy watching Bailey learn and grow.
 

BigSoxFan

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I totally agree with this. Frankly, I like both of these guys. Worst case, they went from the worst backup in the league to one of the best. Let Mac fully heal and enjoy watching Bailey learn and grow.
Seconded. Imagine someone telling you 2 months ago that there would even be a quasi-QB controversy between Zappe and Mac. He’s gotten a lot better since even the preseason, which is encouraging.

Mac is the QB whenever he is ready to return but now they have the luxury of not rushing things.
 

ponch73

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Bill will go back to Mac, the only way he loses the job is if he comes back and keeps turning it over. Zappe has played well, but the gameplan has generally showed less faith in him than in Mac.
However... I do think he has done some things better than Mac, in particular I think he identifies pressure better than Mac has so far this year.

If Zappe plays well again next week (I doubt Mac is back) he still won't keep the job... if Mac returns and continues to turn it over twice a game..... he could lose the job. I doubt it, but that's the scenario for it happening... Zappe executing without turning it over, and Mac being loose with the ball.
After taking another crack at the numbers, I'm going to take the other side of the bet on this. I think Bill will stick with Zappe until proven otherwise.

If you look at the raw offensive points per drive numbers, Mac's body of work over 21 games and Zappe's body of work over a mere 3 games look very similar. Mac's body of work has come against a broader set of opposing defenses based on DVOA (including some stalwarts like 2021 Buffalo and Tampa Bay) whereas Zappe's body of work has come against 1 mediocre (GB) and 2 poor (DET, CLE) defenses. This would suggest that Mac gets the starter job back when he's fully healthy.

But these raw numbers overlook a critical factor -- turnovers. If you penalize the QB for points scored by the opponent after a QB TO (interception, fumble), you get to a net number. On this metric, Mac's performance doesn't look that great. He's had 21 starts and he's only put up respectable net offensive points per drive numbers in a mere 5 of those games (all in 2021 -- NYJ, CLE, TEN, BUF, JAX). 3 of those defenses were subpar (NYJ, CLE, JAX), 1 was banged up (TEN) and the other (BUF) was a game where Mac had 0 TD and 2 INT, but the NE defense bailed him out with a stop after the first pick and the Bills ran out the clock after the second. Mac also has had very pedestrian performances against subpar defenses like 2021 ATL, HOU, CAR, MIA and 2022 MIA.

Zappe has also been lucky (NE defense bailed him out after fumbles vs GB and CLE, and I'm attributing the pick vs DET to Agholor) and has played against lesser defenses. But I think that Bill keeps Mac on the bench for being too careless with the football, a consistent weakness that dates back to last season.

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Cellar-Door

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After taking another crack at the numbers, I'm going to take the other side of the bet on this. I think Bill will stick with Zappe until proven otherwise.

If you look at the raw offensive points per drive numbers, Mac's body of work over 21 games and Zappe's body of work over a mere 3 games look very similar. Mac's body of work has come against a broader set of opposing defenses based on DVOA (including some stalwarts like 2021 Buffalo and Tampa Bay) whereas Zappe's body of work has come against 1 mediocre (GB) and 2 poor (DET, CLE) defenses. This would suggest that Mac gets the starter job back when he's fully healthy.

But these raw numbers overlook a critical factor -- turnovers. If you penalize the QB for points scored by the opponent after a QB TO (interception, fumble), you get to a net number. On this metric, Mac's performance doesn't look that great. He's had 21 starts and he's only put up respectable net offensive points per drive numbers in a mere 5 of those games (all in 2021 -- NYJ, CLE, TEN, BUF, JAX). 3 of those defenses were subpar (NYJ, CLE, JAX), 1 was banged up (TEN) and the other (BUF) was a game where Mac had 0 TD and 2 INT, but the NE defense bailed him out with a stop after the first pick and the Bills ran out the clock after the second. Mac also has had very pedestrian performances against subpar defenses like 2021 ATL, HOU, CAR, MIA and 2022 MIA.

Zappe has also been lucky (NE defense bailed him out after fumbles vs GB and CLE, and I'm attributing the pick vs DET to Agholor) and has played against lesser defenses. But I think that Bill keeps Mac on the bench for being too careless with the football, a consistent weakness that dates back to last season.

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I think once Mac is healthy he'll get the job, in part because I don't see Bill as that reactionary, he chose Mac last year, not just in the draft but handed him the keys out of training camp, he then handed him the starting job this year and made Zappe the 3rd stringer and there was no indication he was even slightly reconsidering his choices before Jones went down.

I don't think a couple games against bad defenses changes that. Bill has a much deeper view of what he sees in these guys than what we have, and he's not a guy who has shown any tendency to make knee-jerk reactions based on short term results. I think if Bill really saw Zappe as a threat to Mac he would have been above Hoyer to start with. Now the longer Zappe plays and plays well, and the worse Mac plays on his return... the more likely a switch back to Zappe will be. As I noted turnovers will be key, but I think Bill isn't going to sit down a fully healthy Mac for Zappe. Only way I could see it would be I guess if Mac has a setback and Zappe has very good games against CHI/NYJ/IND and we win all 3.
 

ponch73

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I think once Mac is healthy he'll get the job, in part because I don't see Bill as that reactionary, he chose Mac last year, not just in the draft but handed him the keys out of training camp, he then handed him the starting job this year and made Zappe the 3rd stringer and there was no indication he was even slightly reconsidering his choices before Jones went down.

I don't think a couple games against bad defenses changes that. Bill has a much deeper view of what he sees in these guys than what we have, and he's not a guy who has shown any tendency to make knee-jerk reactions based on short term results. I think if Bill really saw Zappe as a threat to Mac he would have been above Hoyer to start with. Now the longer Zappe plays and plays well, and the worse Mac plays on his return... the more likely a switch back to Zappe will be. As I noted turnovers will be key, but I think Bill isn't going to sit down a fully healthy Mac for Zappe. Only way I could see it would be I guess if Mac has a setback and Zappe has very good games against CHI/NYJ/IND and we win all 3.
I view this differently and let be clear about why. I don't think Bill gives Zappe the nod primarily because of short-term results against DET and CLE. I think he gives Zappe the nod primarily because of the mediocrity of Mac's overall body of work in the NFL and, especially, his body of work thus far in 2022. I think we might be significantly over-rating Mac's performance and abilities. The net numbers taking into account Mac's turnovers were eye opening. I suspect that, for Bill, last year was last year. Mac was the best QB on the roster in training camp and won the starting job. Things change season to season and game to game. Bill's not giving Mac anything and doesn't owe Mac anything -- Mac needed to continue to earn the starting job with his play on the field.

I think Zappe gets the nod now because he gives the team the best chance to win and will continue to start until he proves otherwise, one game at a time.
 
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