Perhaps the change in the QB reps in New England might be explained by an injury.
NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport and NFL Network's Mike Giardi reported Friday that Jarrett Stidham has been battling discomfort from a leg injury and was not expected to practice much, if at all, today, per sources informed of the situation. Giardi later added that the injury is specifically to Stidham's hip, and it will be several weeks before he's back to 100 percent.
Giardi reported Stidham did not participate in anything beyond individual drills, but it doesn't sound like the coaching staff is overly concerned.
"I'm pretty sure he'll be ready to roll the next time we practice," offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels said, per ESPN.
The injury comes as Stidham has been battling Cam Newton for the starting job.
Giardi previously reported that Newton took an increased number of snaps in practice on Thursday. It's unclear if Stidham's injury played a role in that change.
Stidham has struggled with interceptions throughout training camp. It's possible the leg injury could have played a role in those mishaps -- not being able to drive the ball into tight windows -- or not. Coach Bill Belichick dismissed concerns over practice INTs Friday, saying that the team evaluates the entire body of work, not just one play or one practice.
The injury is an ill-timed hindrance to Stidham's chances of overtaking Newton.
All along, it seemed as though the second-year quarterback would have to flash during camp to beat the former NFL MVP. The INTs didn't help his cause. And the injury has exacerbated the situation. No one has ever won a starting job from the rehab room.