Early Tuesday morning, Alabama received a welcomed surprise of the news that the New England Patriots had named rookie quarterback and former member of the Crimson Tide, Mac Jones, it’s starter.
After thousands of social media posts of excitement were displayed, Jones’ former teammates had to the opportunity to share their own thoughts on the milestone moment.
“That’s awesome,” offensive tackle Evan Neal said. “I’m extremely happy for that guy, especially knowing the type of hard worker that he is, how he approaches the game every day. It’s more than well deserved. The Patriots are definitely going to have a great quarterback on their hands. I’m definitely proud of him.”
While at Alabama, Jones sat behind both Jalen Hurts and Tua Tagovailoa before his chance arrived in 2020 where he took full advantage as he led the Crimson Tide to its 18th national championship. During that championship run, Jone garnered multiple individual awards and was even a finalist for the Heisman Trophy.
Linebacker Christian Harris was one player extremely familiar with Jones’ talent and got an inside look at what he was going to impose on Alabama’s opponent each week, but also at what kind of person he was to his teammates.
“A great guy, a leader,” Harris said. “I know a lot of people say that Mac has a swagger that not a lot of people know he has and he definitely does. You can see it every day. Just the way he approaches the game, the amount of fun he has with it –him being here kinda showed us a way to make sure we’re working had but still having fun at the same time and where it can get you. I think he’s done a really great job and I’m excited to see what he does.”
Jones was the No. 15 selection in the 2020 NFL Draft by the Patriots. From there on he has made a major impact at the facilities impressing the team both on and off the field. He finishes the preseason completing 36 0f 52 passes for 388 yards and a touchdown. What was even more impressive about his string of games, is that every drive Jones was in at quarterback either ended in a touchdown or field goal for the Patriots.
“I’m happy for him,” linebacker Will Anderson said when asked about Jones. “I think he deserves it. He works hard. He puts football first. Football is most definitely important to him. I think I’ve seen this coming. Most definitely happy for him and hope he does great in the league.”
One of his former coaches Butch Jones, who is now the head coach at Arkansas State, also had a ton of kind words to share about Jones.
— Chris Hudgison (@ChrisHudgison) August 31, 2021
Interestingly enough Jones will play his first game in the NFL against former teammate Tua Tagovailoa and the Miami Dolphins on Sept. 12.
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Patrick Dowd is a Reporter for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. You can follow him on Twitter, via Pat_Dowd77