Alabama NFL Draft Prospects

Charlie Weis is high on Mac Jones at quarterback, says he has the ‘It’ factor to make it in the NFL

Mac Jones of Alabama throws a pass at Senior Bowl practice
Vasha Hunt - USA TODAY Sports

All it took was one season, and now Mac Jones is at the center of every conversation.

He led the University of Alabama on a historic run through the 2020 season to a College Football Playoff National Championship, regardless of the Coronavirus pandemic. He played his best on the biggest stages and finished the campaign as an All-American.

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Jones guided the Crimson Tide to 48.5 points per game, which is a Southeastern Conference record. He paced an offense that recorded at least 40 points in 11 of 13 games. Jones completed 77.4 percent (311-of-402) of his passes for 4,500 yards and 41 touchdowns. He turned in five 400-yard performances, including a CFP title game record of 464 yards versus Ohio State.

A native of Jacksonville, Fla., Jones had eight games with at least four touchdown passes. He was both efficient and explosive, as he was one of three Alabama players to be a Heisman finalist. After his junior season, Jones declared for the 2021 NFL Draft and put on a show at the Reese’s Senior Bowl. Since then, media pundits are trying to decipher his destination in the first round.

According to Charlie Weis, a former NFL coach, he told ESPN’s Mike Reiss on Sunday that Jones would be a perfect fit for the New England Patriots. Weis was on the Patriots’ coaching staff from 1993-96 and served a second stint from 2000-04.

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He was the offensive coordinator for three of New England’s six Super Bowls with Tom Brady.

Per ESPN, Weis raved about Jones’ accuracy and said he has the ‘It’ factor at quarterback. Some claim the offensive talent around Jones made him special, but Weis did not approve the narrative.

“You talk about being around good players. Yeah, he was around good players. But playing on a team with a bunch of stars, who is the leader of the offense?” Weis said. “He also had to make all those throws. I think the kid is an excellent quarterback. He has less holes than just about anybody.” – Weis said of Jones

Another form of criticism people have against Jones is his lack of elite athleticism.

With the electrifying traits of Lamar Jackson, Patrick Mahomes, Justin Herbert, Joe Burrow, and Josh Allen, the idea is one has to be mobile at quarterback to obtain success in the pros. Once again, Weis went against the grain in his defense of Jones.

“If you’re looking for a guy that’s going to be running for 30 yards on a regular basis, that’s not your guy. But he can move in the pocket, and from the pocket, and run the ball when he absolutely needs to,” Weis said.

Weis ended his point by saying Jones makes all the plays and all he does is win.

During his five seasons as offensive coordinator for the Patriots, Weis did not see anything that resembled elite athleticism from Tom Brady. He called plays for a quarterback that was efficient and knew how to win big games. Bill Belichick wants to get a signal-caller that will carry New England back to the AFC playoffs. It missed the postseason in 2020 for the first time since 2008.

RELATED: DeVonta Smith definitively chose Mac Jones over Tua Tagovailoa when asked his preference, according to NFL insider

Mike Tannenbaum, a former NFL executive, continues to state that Jones will be a top-10 draft pick.

He has the Carolina Panthers taking Jones at the No. 8 overall pick in April. Carolina needs a quarterback, and Matt Rhule enjoyed coaching Jones at the Senior Bowl. On the heels of one season at Alabama, Jones could be drafted between picks eight and 21 in the coming venue.

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Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith

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