The Patriots reportedly are open to trading Mac Jones this offseason, but what could they expect in return?

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MassLive’s Karen Guregian recently spoke with a “rival” NFL executive who speculated on what New England could get back in a Jones trade.

“I could see a team, even if they saw him as a very good backup, trading a fifth-round pick for him,” the executive told Guregian. “Maybe they could get a fourth-rounder, but it would depend on the time of year, and the team’s situation.”

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That would match, or be worse, than the fourth-round pick the 49ers received in the trade that sent Trey Lance to the Dallas Cowboys. But why would Jones, who authored a great rookie season, be worth less than Lance, who still hasn’t done anything at the NFL level?

“Trey Lance never had a season like Mac had,” the executive said. “But he also had a couple of years of control on his contract which is a big deal, making a trade.”

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A recent report indicated the Patriots, after replacing Bill Belichick with Jerod Mayo, could keep Jones for another season. However, the executive believes a split would be best for both sides.

“I definitely think he’ll have a market,” the executive said. “It seems like it’s been a rough go for him the past two years. Mayo’s a new coach and everything. But it just seems like holding onto him might cause more issues. That’s not how you want to start your coaching career, having a disgruntled player, especially at that position.

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“It’s not what you want, especially when you’re trying to establish a new way of doing things, a new culture there.”

Jones has one year left on his rookie contract. The Patriots reportedly don’t plan to pick up his fifth-year option, which would put Jones under contract for the 2025 campaign.

Featured image via Eric Canha/USA TODAY Sports Images