Pats Draft Rd.1/15: QB Michael McCorkle "Mac" Jones

Old Fart Tree

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Yeah, the Iggles were playing their scrubs so I’m trying not to read too much into the protection being awesome (it was).
 

RedOctober3829

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Overall, this situation is Taylor made for a rookie QB like Mac to step in and play well right away. He has good coaches, really good OL, really good running game, and two solid TEs(when healthy). Combine that with a nice security blanket in Meyers and two other talented WRs in Agholor and Bourne. This isn’t some crappy team with no OL that’s going to get a rookie killed.
 

wiffleballhero

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In the simulacrum
Overall, this situation is Taylor made for a rookie QB like Mac to step in and play well right away. He has good coaches, really good OL, really good running game, and two solid TEs(when healthy). Combine that with a nice security blanket in Meyers and two other talented WRs in Agholor and Bourne. This isn’t some crappy team with no OL that’s going to get a rookie killed.
I think this is where I am but I've been unwilling to post it "out loud" out of a sense that I must be missing something.

But it sure seems to me that usually when a team gets a 'franchise' quarterback in the draft, the unspoken part of letting them learn for the year is that the team is going to suck still anyway (thus having that good draft pick the previous spring). But the Patriots are such an unusual story in that regard -- they were lucky to get Mac where they did and were also only a few plays away from their down season being too good to get him at all. Furthermore, they were only one, pandemic destroyed, season on a downturn (or at least a big downturn). They are not a garbage team about to blow up the future by playing the new QB just to sell T-shirts.

So much of the offseason was spent, to my eyes, being amazed by how fantastic a team the Patriots were putting together after 2020. It feels like a team built to be a serious contender in December, January and February, not just in the Fall of 2022. So why not play Mac if you think it gives you a better chance to win?
 
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bakahump

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Slater needs to retire....so that in 5 years he can become head coach. Other then BB and TB (NE Edition) is there anyone else from the Dynasties more respected then Slater?
 

PedroKsBambino

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Interesting that Slater chose to say that---it's a lot more than he had to say. Wonder if that is a sense of what's to come at QB....
 
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Fuller quote: “The way that he commands respect of even guys like myself — older guys that have been here for a while. And he’s earned that respect by the way that he’s gone about his craft. So, he’s been a joy to work with. This rookie class has really been fantastic.”
 

simplyeric

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I don't think Bill plays that kind of game.
I agree.
He'll pull a guy aside and say "don't ever talk like that again". But that's different.
I wonder if he actively coaches a more taciturn approach to things for players. Like, does he make general statements like "don't throw your guys under the bus" and "don't shit-talk your opponents to the media", stuff like that. Or "don't talk about who you think the starting QB might be".
But yeah I doubt he asks players to make strategic statements.
 

Super Nomario

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He'll pull a guy aside and say "don't ever talk like that again". But that's different.
I wonder if he actively coaches a more taciturn approach to things for players. Like, does he make general statements like "don't throw your guys under the bus" and "don't shit-talk your opponents to the media", stuff like that. Or "don't talk about who you think the starting QB might be".
He definitely does do this stuff. IIRC "speak for yourself" is one of the key talking points for players in dealing with the media.
 

Saints Rest

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He definitely does do this stuff. IIRC "speak for yourself" is one of the key talking points for players in dealing with the media.
My recollection from reading Education of a Coach is that one thing he learned from his Cleveland days was that sometimes the best way to get his message across (now admittedly he was speaking of TO a player) was to use another player to communicate that. It's why he brought in so many guys he knew from NYG, NYJ, and Cleveland when he took over as HC for the NEP.

Now I may be way off base here, and I'd give it a less-probable-than-not, rating, but I do give it more than a zero chance.
 

joe dokes

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My recollection from reading Education of a Coach is that one thing he learned from his Cleveland days was that sometimes the best way to get his message across (now admittedly he was speaking of TO a player) was to use another player to communicate that. It's why he brought in so many guys he knew from NYG, NYJ, and Cleveland when he took over as HC for the NEP.

Now I may be way off base here, and I'd give it a less-probable-than-not, rating, but I do give it more than a zero chance.
That's an interesting point, but I think it goes more to "guys who know what BB wants," and can therefore communicate it, and not to "guys who BB can use as sock puppets."
 

PedroKsBambino

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Is it just me or can anyone else envision BB pulling Slater aside privately to say "Slate, this is the message I want to get out there . . ."
I doubt it was quite that direct, but yes---that's what fed my speculation. I believe, and think consistent with what others have cited there is reporting to support, the idea that BB will share stuff with players and ask captains questions in a way that means something.

Relatedly, guys like Slater also can read Belichick's reactions and have a ton more data than media does about this training camp---they know the balance of comments in film sessions and practices, they hear the tone and inflection etc. They hear and see all of that additional info (verbal and non-verbal) and play it up against what they have heard and seen him do listening to and watching BB for a decade for hundreds of hours a year. So, I wouldn't discount their ability to understand a vast amount beyond what he says in a public press conference....while he's a pretty serious poker player I believe Slater, DMac, guys like that have a far better sense of where things stand than any beat writer.

Now, none of that means Slater was communicating for BB or that he was guessing at where BB may be headed, either, but I do worth recognizing how well someone like Slater understands BB.
 

Super Nomario

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My recollection from reading Education of a Coach is that one thing he learned from his Cleveland days was that sometimes the best way to get his message across (now admittedly he was speaking of TO a player) was to use another player to communicate that. It's why he brought in so many guys he knew from NYG, NYJ, and Cleveland when he took over as HC for the NEP.

Now I may be way off base here, and I'd give it a less-probable-than-not, rating, but I do give it more than a zero chance.
If Belichick wanted to start Mac but was worried about how that would play with some of the players on the team, I could see him leaning on his veterans like Slater to help ease that transition. But as far as commentary to the media? I don't see what that gains.

(FWIW I still think Cam is the most likely starter ... but he did leave the door open a crack here)
 

djbayko

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Is it just me or can anyone else envision BB pulling Slater aside privately to say "Slate, this is the message I want to get out there . . ."
First, I don't really see BB doing that. But I also don't think he needs to. If that's something a coach might think of doing to build confidence in his young quarterback, then it's also something that a seasoned veteran on the team might think of doing on his own for similar reason.
 

BaseballJones

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Not sure where to put it but I'm giddy about the last two drafts.

2020
2nd - Dugger - looks extremely promising
2nd - Uche - a stud in the making
3rd - Jennings - meh...we'll see
3rd - Asiasi - showed me something last night...I think he can be good
3rd - Keene - probably is going to lose his spot
5th - the kicker - what a waste of a pick right from the word GO
6th - Onwenu - stud offensive lineman - powerhouse, versatile...great pick
6th - Herron - not sure if he'll make the team but he's an NFL caliber OL
6th - Maluia - cut
7th - Woodard - cut
UDFA - Taylor - emerging stud

So Dugger, Uche, and Onwenu look great. Jennings and Herron are NFL players but might not make this roster. The rest....yuck, but that's a solid, solid draft. I am adding Taylor as an UDFA (which is cheating a little because he wasn't drafted), because he's obviously legit.

2021
1st - Jones - looks like the real deal
2nd - Barmore - looks like a stud in the making
3rd - Perkins - looks like he can contribute
4th - Stevenson - holy smokes this kid
5th - McGrone - not sure, probably PS
6th - Bledsoe - not sure, probably PS
6th - Sherman - nothing, I don't think
7th - Nixon - PS likely

So the quality players look like Jones, Barmore, Perkins, and Stevenson. That's another terrific draft class.
 

mikcou

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Not sure where to put it but I'm giddy about the last two drafts.

2020
2nd - Dugger - looks extremely promising
2nd - Uche - a stud in the making
3rd - Jennings - meh...we'll see
3rd - Asiasi - showed me something last night...I think he can be good
3rd - Keene - probably is going to lose his spot
5th - the kicker - what a waste of a pick right from the word GO
6th - Onwenu - stud offensive lineman - powerhouse, versatile...great pick
6th - Herron - not sure if he'll make the team but he's an NFL caliber OL
6th - Maluia - cut
7th - Woodard - cut
UDFA - Taylor - emerging stud

So Dugger, Uche, and Onwenu look great. Jennings and Herron are NFL players but might not make this roster. The rest....yuck, but that's a solid, solid draft. I am adding Taylor as an UDFA (which is cheating a little because he wasn't drafted), because he's obviously legit.

2021
1st - Jones - looks like the real deal
2nd - Barmore - looks like a stud in the making
3rd - Perkins - looks like he can contribute
4th - Stevenson - holy smokes this kid
5th - McGrone - not sure, probably PS
6th - Bledsoe - not sure, probably PS
6th - Sherman - nothing, I don't think
7th - Nixon - PS likely

So the quality players look like Jones, Barmore, Perkins, and Stevenson. That's another terrific draft class.
McGrone will be on IR. He is recovering from a torn ACL. I still have some hope for Keene because the size/athleticism has an ideal H-back type feel to it, but a bad year 1 combined with a serious injury in year 2 means a likely year 3 training camp cut if Asiasi is even half decent.

I'd be surprised if Herron doesnt make the team.
 

Pxer

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Not sure where to put it but I'm giddy about the last two drafts.

2020
2nd - Dugger - looks extremely promising
2nd - Uche - a stud in the making
3rd - Jennings - meh...we'll see
3rd - Asiasi - showed me something last night...I think he can be good
3rd - Keene - probably is going to lose his spot
5th - the kicker - what a waste of a pick right from the word GO
6th - Onwenu - stud offensive lineman - powerhouse, versatile...great pick
6th - Herron - not sure if he'll make the team but he's an NFL caliber OL
6th - Maluia - cut
7th - Woodard - cut
UDFA - Taylor - emerging stud

So Dugger, Uche, and Onwenu look great. Jennings and Herron are NFL players but might not make this roster. The rest....yuck, but that's a solid, solid draft. I am adding Taylor as an UDFA (which is cheating a little because he wasn't drafted), because he's obviously legit.

2021
1st - Jones - looks like the real deal
2nd - Barmore - looks like a stud in the making
3rd - Perkins - looks like he can contribute
4th - Stevenson - holy smokes this kid
5th - McGrone - not sure, probably PS
6th - Bledsoe - not sure, probably PS
6th - Sherman - nothing, I don't think
7th - Nixon - PS likely

So the quality players look like Jones, Barmore, Perkins, and Stevenson. That's another terrific draft class.
That's pretty liberal usage of "stud."

I don't think Onwenu is necessarily an above-average starter. What has Taylor shown you that he is an emerging stud? We haven't even seen Jones throw a ball in a competitive game yet, and I'm pretty hopeful on the reports of Barmore, but I don't think we can even meaningfully say it was a good pick or not yet.
 

SMU_Sox

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Hello, my name is John Limberakis. You have insulted Onwenu. Prepare to… well not die but you get the point. Onwenu played at close to a pro bowl caliber level last year. OL experts like Thorn have been raving about him. If he doesn’t give you above average starting play this year (aside from injuries) I’ll gladly donate $50 to the Jimmy Fund.
 

SeoulSoxFan

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Onwenu was one of the absolute steals last year. Better yet, this year's camp reports have him working hard, not resting on past (well-deserved) accolades.

Speaking of PFF, they named him to the 2020 All-Rookie team:

https://www.patspulpit.com/2021/1/8/22220216/patriots-michael-onwenu-pro-football-focus-2020-all-rookie-team

"Onwenu ended up settling in and starting 12 games at right tackle for the Patriots this year, but he started games at both left guard and right guard, as well. Not only did he start at three different positions, but Onwenu also earned PFF grades of 79.0 or higher at each of left guard (83.5), right guard (79.7) and right tackle (79.2) on 100-plus snaps. That kind of versatility and high-level play across multiple positions is rare for any offensive lineman, let alone a rookie.

Onwenu was solid in pass protection, but he really made his mark as a run-blocker on a New England team that skewed very run-heavy this season. He earned one of the highest run-blocking grades of any tackle in the league this season on gap runs."
 

SMU_Sox

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I will be happy if he finishes in the top 20 for ANY/A - which is the benchmark I know others here also value as well. A lot of rookie QBs are average or bad or in that range with most struggling in year 1. You can find exceptions to that but that’s the norm. So to me if Mac can finish somewhere in the 15-25 range for ANY/A to me that would be a successful first year. If he’s better that’s awesome! But that’s my bar and I think it’s fair.
 

soxhop411

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‘Versions of Tom Brady’ in Mac Jones, says Patriots Hall of Famer Rodney Harrison (report)

Rodney Harrison shared a sideline with Tom Brady for six seasons.


Now an analyst for NBC, Harrison isn’t hesitating with a strong comparison: He sees a similar quarterback to Brady when he flips on film of Mac Jones.


“When I saw this kid play, I got excited. I saw versions of Tom Brady. If you put No. 12 on No. 10, that’s what I saw,” Harrison told the Boston Herald’s Karen Guregian. “I saw a guy that was youthful, a guy that when they scored a touchdown, he was pumped up and fired up, engaging his teammates.
“Look, at the end of the day, if you’re not doing what’s best for the team, and that’s what you’ve always preached, then you’re not being fair to the team,” Harrison told Guregian. “I just relied on what I saw on tape. It was nothing personal. When I saw Mac Jones play, and when I saw his command of the offense, and I saw his arm strength, his awareness and his presence, and I saw him in the no-huddle, he just looked comfortable. He just looks the part.”



The Patriots quarterback competition came to an end on Tuesday morning with Jones coronated as New England’s new starter while Cam Newton was released. It’s a move Harrison strongly supported, and the analyst said as much even when it looked like Newton was going to land the gig. Appearing on Peacock’s Sunday Night Football Final, Harrison believed it was an open-and-shut case to start the rookie.



“If (Belichick is) watching the same film that I’m watching, I believe he should start (Jones),” Harrison said. “I think it would be absolutely crazy not to start Mac Jones. I just think he’s a really good player. They’ve done a great job surrounding him with talent. The offensive line is one of the top five in the NFL. They got a great defense. You know they’re going to have great special teams. And then put that on top of coaching — it’s a no-brainer.
https://www.masslive.com/patriots/2021/08/versions-of-tom-brady-in-mac-jones-says-patriots-hall-of-famer-rodney-harrison-report.html
 

GB5

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Thrilled for Mac. If nothing else, we build for the future. My primary concern for Mac is his left knee. His statement that he put the brace on, so in case he ever gets a knee injury that he knows what the brace will feel like, was well done in the creativity department, but also semi ridiculous. My guess is he has something wrong with the knee, but like Brady and others, he will play through it, and as long as it doesnt keep him out, you will not hear about it until the end of the year.
 

EL Jeffe

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I don't recall Cam taking any snaps this preseason out of empty formations or in the hurry-up. When Cam was out there, the passing game looked...well a lot like last year's. There were some good throws, and the velocity looked better, but the scheme was very vanilla and clunky. With Mac, it looked like a modern NFL offense; both the formations and pace. NE spent an awful lot of money on Jonnu, Henry, and Agholor this offseason--with Cam under center, that would have been a waste of resources.

I was a Mac Truther this past CFB season, but he's exceeded my expectations. Not everything was perfect; he held the ball a little too long at times and there were a few throws and reads I'm sure he'd like to have back...but the Mac offense versus the Cam offense, just even going off the preseason snaps, was night and day. One played fast and attacked the entire field, the other played slow and methodical before the eventual stalling out.
 

BigJimEd

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Thrilled for Mac. If nothing else, we build for the future. My primary concern for Mac is his left knee. His statement that he put the brace on, so in case he ever gets a knee injury that he knows what the brace will feel like, was well done in the creativity department, but also semi ridiculous. My guess is he has something wrong with the knee, but like Brady and others, he will play through it, and as long as it doesnt keep him out, you will not hear about it until the end of the year.
I thought Mac said it was for preventive reasons. Not sure I buy it either but he wouldn't be the first. Brady wore and recommended a preventive brace for years after his injury. Most colleges require their OL to wear them and a few require their QB to wear one at least in practice though not necessarily in games.
 

Ferm Sheller

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If Mac was injured, it certainly didn't seem to cost him any time, impede his performance, or otherwise show (e.g., grimacing, limping).
 

rodderick

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If Mac was injured, it certainly didn't seem to cost him any time, impede his performance, or otherwise show (e.g., grimacing, limping).
I thought he walked gingerly for a bit after sliding in the second preseason game. I also don't buy that a guy who never wore a brace would suddenly start wearing one in his first NFL preaseason while competing for a starting job just as a precautionary measure. Either way, it's highly likely not to be anything serious.
 

BaseballJones

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If it was anything remotely serious, there's no way they'd have cut Newton and Hoyer and just roll with Mac. He's got to be fine.
 

Ferm Sheller

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I thought he walked gingerly for a bit after sliding in the second preseason game. I also don't buy that a guy who never wore a brace would suddenly start wearing one in his first NFL preaseason while competing for a starting job just as a precautionary measure. Either way, it's highly likely not to be anything serious.
Yes, the bolded is true, but I recall thinking that it may have been because he fell awkwardly on the brace as it was a very temporary limp. In any event, I agree with you and Baseball Jones: it's unlikely serious.
 

tims4wins

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Thanks for posting those SSF. I mentioned it elsewhere but I loved the play at 6:30 of the first video against the Eagles. This video illustrates it even further. The little shoulder hitch totally clears the defender out to make the throw down the field.
 

SeoulSoxFan

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Thanks for posting those SSF. I mentioned it elsewhere but I loved the play at 6:30 of the first video against the Eagles. This video illustrates it even further. The little shoulder hitch totally clears the defender out to make the throw down the field.
I've been binging on Mac content* and while most are repetitive/shallow, there are some that I found really informative and frankly, fun (i.e, encouraging).

Here's another. PFF's Kevin Cole talks about Jones the first 3rd of the video. He does caution the high number of sacks Jones took, however. He thinks PFF's grading system does not weigh sacks heavily enough:

View: https://youtu.be/4wvsfvCWPxE


You have to think McD & McC will be working on that quite a bit before the Miami defense throws the kitchen sink at him in week 1.

P. S. Just got a new Tab S7 and it's tremendous for watching YouTube (and Netflix).
 

RedOctober3829

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I don't recall Cam taking any snaps this preseason out of empty formations or in the hurry-up. When Cam was out there, the passing game looked...well a lot like last year's. There were some good throws, and the velocity looked better, but the scheme was very vanilla and clunky. With Mac, it looked like a modern NFL offense; both the formations and pace. NE spent an awful lot of money on Jonnu, Henry, and Agholor this offseason--with Cam under center, that would have been a waste of resources.

I was a Mac Truther this past CFB season, but he's exceeded my expectations. Not everything was perfect; he held the ball a little too long at times and there were a few throws and reads I'm sure he'd like to have back...but the Mac offense versus the Cam offense, just even going off the preseason snaps, was night and day. One played fast and attacked the entire field, the other played slow and methodical before the eventual stalling out.
This is where I've been ever since the Washington game. The coaching staff challenged Mac in every possible way and he's not only met the challenge he's exceeded expectations in a lot of areas. The passing game looks smoother, in rhythm, and more explosive with Mac than with Cam. The threat of play action is greater because Mac is a better thrower than Cam and the defense has to actually respect the pass rather than gear up for the run. Mac checked into positive plays multiple occasions as well. If this is how he's going to run the offense after only being here a couple months, imagine what it could look like when he gets experience under his belt. What fans also have to realize is that there will definitely be bumps in the road for him and he will have bad throws and bad games. I will take the good with the bad with Mac as at least I know they are building towards something with Mac instead of being stuck in neutral with Cam. The idea of Cam playing a couple games until Mac is ready just wasn't the right line of thinking. If the coaches think Mac can play and not cost you any wins, you play him now. If he had a long way to go and couldn't master the basic concepts of the offense, then yes you sit him. But that wasn't the case so play the kid. The rookie deal for a QB is the most valuable contract in all of sports.
 

Captaincoop

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I kind of wish McCorkle would change his uniform number. For some reason #10 and #6 are locked in my mind as the official uniform numbers of mediocre quarterbacks. Although on the flip side, the path is wide open for him to be the greatest #10 since...Fran Tarkenton?
 

rodderick

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I kind of wish McCorkle would change his uniform number. For some reason #10 and #6 are locked in my mind as the official uniform numbers of mediocre quarterbacks. Although on the flip side, the path is wide open for him to be the greatest #10 since...Fran Tarkenton?
I kind of hate how everything up to 11 looks on QBs, except for 4 and 7. 12-19 is where it's at.