Mac Jones’s performance on Sunday was not nearly as bad as he was vilified for. Greg Bedard of Boston Sports Journal (pay site) writes that he was initially wrong about Jones’s performance and that after watching the all-22 video of the game, Jones actually played pretty well.
That is exactly what I said in my Observations article written Sunday night and published Monday morning. Jones was pressured on 48.9% of his drop backs.
Bedard says “They put a lot on Jones, despite not playing in a month. Was it always perfect? No. He is still a young player 20-something games into his career. But he largely handled it very well. I do not think Zappe could have handled all this.”
Bedard then cites the fact that Jones was 6 of 11 on 3rd down in the 1st half. He goes on and provides proof and lists all the plays. There were three more plays that were not Mac Jones’s fault. The 1st was the tipped ball by Bryce Huff that Marcus Cannon just whiffed on his block. This allowed Huff to hit the ball as Jones was in his passing motion, causing the popup INT. Note: I owe an apology to Isaiah Wynn as I blamed him for the INT when it was actually Cannon.
The second play was the near pick-six Interception that was wiped out by the roughing of the passer penalty (and it WAS a penalty). Mac Jones said in the post-game press conference it was a miscommunication with Jakobi Meyers. That was awfully nice of Mac Jones to not throw Meyers under the bus. Meyers ran the wrong route. It was 1st down and this was an option route where the receiver and QB have to see the same thing. The DB was playing inside position, trying to prevent Meyers from running a slant. Jones saw this and threw it to the outside. Meyers didn’t see it the same way and ran up past the DB and then cut inside. It appeared as though Mac Jones was throwing it right to the defender.
That’s what I thought as I screamed at my TV. The final play was the failed 4th and 1 play. First of all, what a terrible play design by the coaches. Two WR split left were Hunter Henry wide and Jakobi Meyers in the slot. Henry runs a quick out. His defender plays it halfway as Meyers also cuts that way. One defender covers both players.
Jones tried to signal to Meyers to go long and that is what Jones did, float the ball over the defenders. If Meyers had run a pick-and-roll play, like in basketball, where Meyers runs into the body of his defender and pins him inside, it would have been a completion. He then reverses pivot, shielding the defender inside and breaking long would have been an easy pitch and catch.
Considering the amount of pressure Jones was under and the fact that he is just 4 weeks removed from the high ankle sprain injury, Mac Jones played a very good game and should get the credit for doing so.
Posted Under: Patriots Commentary
Tags: Mac Jones New England Patriots New York Jets