Cam Newton will be okay after suffering an injury to his hand during organized team activities (OTAs) for the New England Patriots; however, Mac Jones is making big moves.
According to ESPN’s Mike Reiss, who covers the Patriots, Jones finished the rest of Friday’s practice with the first-team offense and is earning respect from Bill Belichick. The former Alabama quarterback was selected at No. 15 overall in the NFL Draft.
He has only been with the team for a short period of time, but Belichick said Jones ‘has a good understanding’ of how the Patriots operate.
Mac Jones has earned respect from Bill Belichick through his first month with the Patriots. Here is why: pic.twitter.com/yFKw1kiprV
— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) June 4, 2021
Bill Belichick said this morning Mac Jones has “earned a lot of respect” for the way he’s worked to learn the system. Based on Jones’ background with Nick Saban and the way he blew away coaches before the draft, this is unfolding predictably, and Belichick praised Jones for it.
— Jeff Howe (@jeffphowe) June 4, 2021
“It is a process,” Belichick said of Jones.
“We’ve had a number of other players at that quarterback position come in and go through that. Some, it starts a little slower and then picks up. Sometimes it starts a little higher and slows down. We’ll just have to see how it goes. He’s working hard and he puts in a lot of time. Certainly giving his very best effort to do everything we’ve asked him to do and do it the way we’ve asked him to do it, which is a great place to start. He’s earned a lot of respect from that. But he has a long way to go. We’ll see how it goes.”
We have reporters discuss the competitive edge Jones has displayed at OTAs. He strives for perfection on every rep, and his new teammates see the leadership and ‘swagger’ he carries on the field. Belichick told reporters per Reiss that Newton is the starting quarterback at this time; nevertheless, it is good to see Jones pushing him.
The six-time Super Bowl champion does not praise players often, so the 2020 national champion is truly making an impact.
New England will have four more voluntary OTA sessions next week and then three mandatory minicamp practices. The Patriots will open training camp in late July.
An opportunity is still available for Jones to take the starting job.
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