If the Mac Jones era is truly over, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick can only point the finger at one person.
In light of the Mac Jones shopping rumors, New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick has some serious introspection to do. The main question he should be asking himself is, “How did I screw over Mac so badly?”
Jones, a former first-round pick, suffered an extreme regression in his second year in the league to the extent where he was being benched in favor of 2022 fourth-rounder Bailey Zappe.
This offseason, Jones has been rumored to be shopped to as many as four different teams, with the most intriguing destination being the Las Vegas Raiders. There, he could potentially reunite with former offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels and a host of other former Pats members as McDaniels continues assemble the Las Vegas Patriots this offseason.
It would be a much safer space compared to the Pats’ dysfunctional offense last year, anyway.
For all of Jones’ dirty plays and sideline antics, he proved a promising franchise signal-caller in 2021, finishing second in Offensive Rookie of the Year voting. What went wrong?
In two words: Bill Belichick.
Patriots HC Bill Belichick took a shovel and started digging Mac Jones’ grave
It wasn’t just the fact that Belichick named former defensive coordinator Matt Patricia as the team’s new offensive coordinator. That obviously didn’t pan out well.
Or the fact that his quarterbacks coach, Joe Judge, used to dabble in special teams and it turns out that was the only thing he was good at.
According to NFL’s Mike Giardi, the entire vibe of the Patriots’ offense was off in 2022. All the players “felt” that something was inherently not working, and tensions began to build.
There were coaches who knew that this system/play calling/play design was not up to previous standards set in Foxboro with Josh McDaniels in charge.
Belichick’s failed experiment last season came at the expense of Mac Jones’ career and Jones unleashed his frustrations in very visible ways, whether it was screaming at his coaches on the sidelines or reportedly calling other coaches to figure out how to run an efficient offense under Patricia, per Chris Simms on the PFT Live podcast.
If Jones’ tantrums didn’t sit well with Belichick, Belichick’s unbridled hubris didn’t sit well with Jones. Looking back at how pitiful the offense performed in 2022, Jones would have a point if he were to say, “Bill set me up for failure.” Based on the Pats’ coaching hires and schematic changes, he really did.