The New England Patriots took another step to address their quarterback position in the first round of the 2021 NFL draft by picking Alamba’s Mac Jones with the 15th overall pick. It came as a complete surprise when he dropped out of the top 10 as several teams could have benefited from his services or at least prevented Bill Belichick from adding much-needed depth to the quarterback position, but everyone in Pats Nation is grateful for the gift. I want to personally say thank you to the 13 teams that passed on him.
Let me be crystal clear about one thing: I still believe Cam Newton will be the opening day starter over Mac Jones. In my mind, his track record and behavior since he became a Patriot has proven he deserves a second chance. He will be the first one to admit last year did not go as planned, but he owned up to his mistakes and seems to be doing everything in his power to ensure this season will be different.
Look no further than his workouts with receivers Jakobi Meyers and Gunner Olszewski at Dexter Southfield School in Brookline, Massachusetts last month for proof. I expect him to come back hungry for more, but I also foresee plenty of opportunities for him to pass on his knowledge and experience to Jones to help him succeed in the NFL and eventually replace him as the starter.
Mac Jones in College
When you look back at Mac Jones’ statistics, the one thing that jumps off the page is his touchdown to turnover ratio. How impressive are 56 touchdowns to just seven interceptions? I’d say worthy enough to be considered higher than a 15th overall pick, but once again only the Patriots seemed to agree.
Now some might make the argument that the majority of those came last season when he wasn’t sitting behind Tua Tagovailoa at quarterback and you’d be right. However, when you can lead your team to a 13-0 record, while throwing 41 touchdowns and 4 interceptions, en route to a National Championship, you will receive a lot of people’s attention.
Add this to the fact that he played for Nick Saban, a former assistant of Bill Belichick, and he should be set up for success. To go from a head coach that won a record-breaking seven national titles to one that has won eight combined Super Bowls, he should know what kind of expectation is in store for him in New England.
Jones also has the distinct honor of becoming the first quarterback Belichick has ever selected in the first round. And this wasn’t an accident either as he was the only quarterback drafted in the first round that saw Belichick attend his pro day.
The Draft Continues
As the draft moves on, I see the Patriots continuing to address depth at key positions. As I am writing this article, they have drafted Alabama DT Christian Barmore at pick #38 in a trade with the Cincinnati Bengals and Oklahoma edge rusher Ronnie Perkins at pick #96.
Adding more pass rushers to compete for roster spots and get pressure in the opponents’ backfield is never a bad idea. They will get learn from the greatest coach of all time who is a defensive wizard. That being said, watch for Bill Belichick to add more help on offense, specifically at the wide receiver and offensive line positions. Both positions have seen injury issues and poor play keep the offense from reaching its full potential in the last two seasons.
I foresee Mac Jones taking over the starting quarterback position in the next two seasons, but that process could be sped up if Newton struggles this season. Only time will tell how that process works out but if his last season at Alabama is any indication the future is bright for him. One simple phrase that everyone in Pats Nation should remember is this: “In Bill We Trust.”
By: Whitney Dowds CruelFan.com