DETROIT (CBSDC/AP) — Much-discussed third-string quarterback Tim Tebow appeared to be on the New England Patriots’ roster bubble coming into the game.

The former Heisman Trophy winner has struggled passing this preseason and is fighting to stay in the NFL. But he wasn’t able to show his stuff against the Lions, because coach Bill Belichick elected to play Brady for all of the first half and backup Ryan Mallett for all of the second.

So, despite the crowd’s repeated chants of “We want Tebow,” No. 5 stood on the sideline.

The former Heisman Trophy winner has passed poorly but run well in the preseason and is not considered a lock to make the team.

Asked why he only played two quarterbacks, Patriots coach Bill Belichick responded with: “Because I only played two quarterbacks.”

Both teams need to get down to the NFL-mandated 75 players by Tuesday.

Elsewhere in the NFL, the Washington Redskins will also play just two quarterbacks Saturday against the Buffalo Bills. However, those quarterbacks — Rex Grossman and Pat White — are vying for the team’s third quarterback job this season. The Redskins say Robert Griffin III will not play until the regular season and backup Kirk Cousins is shelved after suffering a mid-foot sprain against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday.

(TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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