On-field progress throughout training camp is important for really any player on the New England Patriots, but especially so for the team’s rookies.
And so far, Jalen Mills, who has looked like the Patriots top cornerback in the preseason, has been impressed with the development of both Marcus Jones and Jack Jones.
The two garnered praised from Mills not just for what they’ve been able to accomplish during joint practices against the Carolina Panthers this week, but for what they’ve done behind the scenes to put themselves in a position to succeed.
“Those guys have been locked in in the meeting rooms, asking a lot of questions and that’s what you want to see from young guys,” Mills told reporters following practice Wednesday, as seen on video from Patriots.com. “You want to see young guys who don’t think that they know all the answers, even if they do, asking questions from the veteran guys, asking questions to the coaching staff and then coming out here not making the same mistake twice that they did they day before and coming out here and playing fast.”
The Patriots fortified their secondary by selecting the Jones’ with back-to-back picks in the third and fourth round, respectively, in this year’s draft.
Both have shown promising flashes since being drafted of contributing early on in their careers, which is a terrific sign after the Patriots cornerback depth took a hit this week with both Joejuan Williams and Malcolm Butler being placed on injured reserve.
There’s obviously still a long way to go for the two rookies, but the early returns on them have been positive.
NESN.com’s coverage of New England Patriots preseason is presented by Cross Insurance, protecting your team since 1954.