But Nick Wright is taking a more measured approach with the rookie, explaining Wednesday on FS1’s “First Things First” that he believes Jones’ “best-case scenario” is something akin to Joe Flacco.
“Because he won the quarterback job, I’m not going to drastically change until I see him play in a regular season game what my opinion of him coming out of college was — which is that he’s fine,” Wright said. “He’s on an awesome team and he’s very well coached, and I think he probably has the traits of, at the best-case scenario, a solid NFL starter. Solid. I think Flacco is probably his best-case scenario.
“And I know (Eric Mangini) and (Kevin Wildes), who are huge QB wins guys, are like, ‘Flacco, oh boy, let’s take it.’ I’m not a big quarterback wins guy, and I thought Flacco never was a top-10 quarterback in the league, even the year he won the Super Bowl.”
Flacco, who’s still kicking around the NFL as a backup at age 36, long has been one of the league’s most polarizing quarterbacks, largely because the Ravens’ success during his time in Baltimore often exceeded his personal production.
Nevertheless, the Ravens advanced to the playoffs seven times in his 11 seasons with the organization and won Super Bowl XLVII during the 2021 campaign. So, it’s really a personal preference as to whether the Flacco comparison sits OK with Patriots fans or makes them want to vomit.
“I don’t think Mac Jones will be one of the 10 best quarterbacks in football at any point in his career,” Wright said. “Now, that’s obviously total projection because he hasn’t played. We’ve got to watch him play. But I wasn’t super high on him coming out of ‘Bama.”
The Patriots probably have higher hopes for Jones, whom they selected with the 15th overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, especially as it pertains to his “best-case scenario” moving forward. But one could do worse than a QB with a respectable career and a Super Bowl ring on his résumé.
Not everyone can be the next Tom Brady.