The New England Patriots were widely praised for their selection of Alabama quarterback Mac Jones during the 2021 NFL Draft.
And it seems at least two annoymous coaches at the college level are feeling the same way one week later.
“The best guy I saw,” one Big Ten offensive coordinator said of Jones in an ESPN story published Friday. “That might be the best pick of the first round. … The ball was always where it should be, when it was supposed to be there, and the receiver always had a chance to do something with it.”
Jones, as you will recall, was selected by the Patriots at No. 15 overall. New England earned high post-draft grades, perhaps in large part due to the fact they didn’t have to trade up to get the signal-caller they liked.
“Mac Jones was the most ready out of those quarterbacks,” one SEC head coach told ESPN. “You talk about somebody who could throw into a tight window, somebody who could make all the throws. Everybody talks about the arm, but his arm is big enough.”
Patriots fans most certainly will like those two reviews, but a different Power 5 coordinator, who studied Jones and the Crimson Tide offense, saw it differently.
“I was not surprised that he dropped,” the coach told ESPN. “He was just throwing routes versus air to the best players in the country with an unbelievable running back, awesome blocking. I don’t see his game translating. He might prove me wrong, and if anybody can do it, it’s the Patriots.”
It’s fair to say we won’t really know until Jones gets on the field with the Patriots, which could be as soon as Week 1, according to Jones’ former offensive coordinator. Jones will join a quarterback room with proclaimed starter Cam Newton and Jarrett Stidham, as the three will begin their competition when the Patriots take the field later this month.