May 18, 2024

Patriots

Malik Cunningham was Mac Jones’ backup through the Patriots’ Week 6 matchup in opposition to the Raiders.

Malik Cunningham’s time on the Patriots’ lively roster did not final very lengthy. (Photograph by Chris Unger/Getty Photographs)

Lower than two weeks after the Patriots signed him to the lively roster with a three-year contract, Malik Cunningham is hitting the waiver wire as soon as once more. 

The Patriots introduced on Tuesday night that they waived Cunningham, who will now have to go via waivers if New England hopes to fit him again on the follow squad.

New England additionally launched veteran Trey Flowers, who wanted to be activated from the PUP listing by Wednesday afternoon after being declared eligible to return earlier this month. If Flowers wasn’t activated by Wednesday, he would have been positioned on the season-ending PUP listing.

With Cunningham faraway from the lively roster, the Patriots have an open spot on their 53-man grouping.

Broad receiver Jalen Reagor could possibly be a candidate to fit in to the lively roster, with the 24-year-old wideout enjoying 42% of New England’s snaps throughout Sunday’s comeback win over the Payments. After Sunday’s victory, Reagor has hit the utmost variety of commonplace elevations (three) from the follow squad.

It’s been a roller-coaster season for Cunningham, who spent the primary 5 weeks of the 2023 season on the follow squad earlier than becoming a member of New England’s lively roster after inking that three-year deal.

Cunningham served as New England’s backup QB through the crew’s highway loss to the Raiders in Week 6. Regardless of the previous Louisville QB’s distinctive skillset and the middling returns put forth by Mac Jones via many of the 2023 marketing campaign, Cunningham was given little alternative to supplant the Patriots’ QB1 throughout his stint on the lively roster.

Invoice Belichick and the Patriots opted to make use of Cunningham sparingly in that loss to the Raiders at Allegiant Stadium.

Cunningham finally performed simply six snaps in that sport, lining up as a receiver 4 occasions. He completed with zero targets, zero carries, and nil go makes an attempt. The one play seemingly drawn up for Cunningham within the fourth quarter was a faux handoff to Ezekiel Elliott, however it resulted in a Raiders sack and a lack of 5 yards.

Throughout Sunday’s win over Buffalo, Cunningham was added to the listing of inactives for New England, with Bailey Zappe slotting again in because the Patriots’ backup QB behind Jones.

“He can do a variety of various things. I feel that was a call that Invoice [Belichick] and Matt [Groh] made. I don’t make these selections to carry him up,” Invoice O’Brien stated on Oct. 17 of Cunningham’s restricted reps in opposition to the Raiders. “That’ll be week to week, relying on various things that go on. You would see him at completely different spots all through the offense. He can play a variety of completely different locations, in order that might be week to week based mostly on the sport plan.

“We felt like that was one of the simplest ways to go about it for the Raider sport based mostly on the place we have been, the place we have been from an damage standpoint and issues like that. How can we get Malik Cunningham into the sport? That was one of the simplest ways to get him into the sport.”

Cunningham could not should pack his luggage in Foxborough, a minimum of not if he clears waivers as he did after the top of the preseason. Nonetheless, Tuesday’s information represents the most recent twist in what has been an up-and-down first foray within the NFL ranks for the younger QB.