FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- New England Patriots quarterbacks Cam Newton and Mac Jones are both expected to play in Thursday night's preseason opener against the Washington Football Team at Gillette Stadium, according to a source.
How long they play will be determined by head coach Bill Belichick, who traditionally keeps his intentions tight-lipped, in part to keep players on edge. Belichick has previously said that Newton is the team's starting quarterback, so Newton would be expected to take initial snaps.
Belichick previously acknowledged that plans to practice with the Eagles on Monday and Tuesday in Philadelphia are a factor in decision-making, so there's always the possibility of a late shift in intentions.
"We'll do what's best for this game and then kind of go from there," he said this week. "The joint practice days, they count for something."
Jones, the first-round draft pick from Alabama, has been wearing No. 50 in spring practices and throughout training camp, with Belichick continuing a recent tradition of putting all rookies in unconventional numbers.
That will change Thursday night -- quarterbacks are only allowed to wear numbers 1-19 once games begin. Jones has been issued No. 10 which is the number he wore in high school and at Alabama.
Last week, Jones joked about retiring No. 50.
"I don't know if I would have kept it," he said.
Washington coach Ron Rivera said his starters will play in the game.