Mac Jones: The Possible Legend of Foxborough


Photo Source: The New York Times

Seamus Dowling, Writer

Michael “Mac” Jones, the Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback who won the National Championship this year, will be drafted in just over a month at the 2021 NFL Draft.

Jones is overshadowed by other quarterbacks, like the generational Trevor Lawrence and the rising star Zach Wilson, because of a lack of athleticism and teams looking for quarterbacks who are good with their legs.

In addition to being overshadowed by other quarterbacks, many teams and fans seem to be wary of Jones because during his time at Alabama he had star receivers, like Henry Ruggs III, Devonta Smith, Jayleen Waddle, and Jerry Jeudy, to lift him up. Since Jones had all of these offensive juggernauts, like Tua Tagovailoa, the former Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback who went sixth overall and underperformed this season with the Miami Dolphins, many draft analysts see Jones going to a team so he can replace an aging or “temporary” quarterback like on the Pittsburgh Steelers, Chicago Bears, San Francisco 49ers, and Washington Football Team, who are drafting later in the first round, with the exception of the 49ers.

Although Jones is rumored to be who the San Francisco 49ers will select with the 3rd overall pick, I believe that he will possibly be selected with the number 15th overall pick by the New England Patriots to be the possible future of Foxborough.

After going 7-9 in the 2020 NFL season with the departure of Tom Brady and many players like Patrick Chung and Dont’a Hightower opting out because of COVID-19, it is safe to say that the Patriots needed to address their problems and many argue that they did just that.

Signing Hunter Henry, Jonnu Smith, Matthew Judon, Nelson Agholor, and other players in free agency, in addition to signing Cam Newton to a one year deal, showed how the Patriots addressed their offensive and pass rushing woes. With all of these additions, the Patriots seem to have one goal: win the AFC East to get back into the playoff with a more dominant offense and improved defense.

The move to sign Cam Newton to a one-year deal is a smart move because he may bounce back and possibly perform better than he did this past season. However, if not, Newton will not be a Patriot in 2022. But, since he is a veteran going into his 10th season, he is not the long-term guy that the Patriots are looking for. 

Instead, many believe that the new and possible long-time quarterback for the Patriots might be Mac Jones.

Even though there are quarterback-needy teams before the Patriots draft at 15, like the 49ers and others, quarterbacks like Trey Lance, Trevor Larence, Zach Wilson, and Justin Fields will most likely go before pick 15, leaving Jones available when the Patriots draft.

The Patriots will most likely pick Jones because he is young but seasoned, was coached by Nick Saban, who coached under Belichick in the early 90s, and is accurate and outstanding in the pocket, just like Tom Brady. After only a year of Newton, who was not accurate, the Patriots need to look for a precise, consistent passer.

How do Patriots fans feel about Mac Jones? Simon Bissitt, a junior at Pentucket Regional High School, shared his thoughts on why Mac Jones has a chance to be drafted by the Patriots and he gave a thoughtful and interesting view.

When asked if Jones could transition into the NFL, Bissitt said, “Yes, because he sat, played, and gained experience for four years.” Jones has a good chance of making the stressful transition to the NFL, where many players fail, because Jones has been coached under Nick Saban, the greatest college football coach ever, and has learned the knowledge of playing football. 

Since Bissitt believes that Jones can make the transition to the NFL, he also believes that it would be best for Jones to sit on the bench for a year because he will “learn from the veterans.”

Bissitt also agrees that Jones can succeed in the NFL without his star studded receivers like Smith and Waddle. “Jones threw for 4,500 yards and Deshaun Watson threw more with lackluster receivers this season,” he commented. Aaron Rodgers, quarterback of the Green Bay Packers, also threw for over 4,000 yards this season without a true wide receiver, like Chris Godwin or Mike Evans, to complement Davante Adams, who he connected with 115 times for 1,374 yards and 18 touchdowns.

Tom Brady was and still is a leader whose fierce and passionate spirit for the game motivates any team he plays on. His leadership is one of the factors that made the Patriots and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers so successful and motivated to play hard even when losing games. So, could Jones emulate this skill if drafted by the Patriots?

Bissitt believes that Jones has the skills to be a leader in the locker room and on the field. “The Crimson Tide won the national championship and Smith won the Heisman Trophy,” he said. “I think that both were accomplished by Jones.”

It takes a lot for a team to win a national championship, and seeing that Jones did it with many departures of star receivers, like Ruggs III and Jeudy, he is definitely a leader. Jones will be the player who, if drafted by the Patriots, motivates them and leads them to the playoffs again, even when times are tough and fans begin to question if the team is actually good.

When finally asked, “Would Jones be the answer for the Patriots?” Bissitt said, “It is really hard to decide at the moment, but if I had to pick [a simple answer] it would be no. Honestly, I could see him not even making one Pro Bowl because there are a lot of good quarterbacks.”

In addition, Bissitt added that Mac Jones “might be a criminally underrated player on a mediocre team, like De’aaron Fox [of the Sacramento Kings] from the NBA.”

No one is quite sure if Mac Jones will be the next Tom Brady, a major draft bust, or incredibly underrated, but nonetheless, he might possibly be drafted by the Patriots in the 2021 NFL Draft to become the possible future in Foxborough.