Patriots QB Mac Jones (ankle) doubtful to play vs. Lions

Another week without Mac Jones appears to be in New England's future.

The second-year quarterback is officially doubtful for the Patriots' Week 5 game versus the Detroit Lions, according to the team's injury report. Tight end Jonnu Smith (ankle) is also doubtful. Both were limited participants in Friday's practice.

Jones did not play in New England's Week 4 loss to Green Bay, with veteran Brian Hoyer initially replacing him before a concussion forced him out of action. Rookie Bailey Zappe played the majority of the game, throwing a touchdown pass to DeVante Parker and completing 10 of 15 passes for 99 yards.

Plainly speaking, New England's offensive ceiling is lower if Zappe ends up starting. Jones attempted to work his way back toward being able to play during the week of practice, but it sounds as if that isn't going to happen for the 1-3 Patriots.

Sunday pits two 1-3 teams who have played better then their records indicate, but are equally desperate to notch another victory. The Patriots will attempt to do so without their top signal-caller against the league's No. 1 offense (and worst defense).

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