The Patriots want to see some improvement in the young quarterback entering next season.
Last season was less than ideal for Patriots QB Mac Jones. A day now rarely goes by during this offseason that you don’t see a headline about Mac’s job security, a quarterback trade proposal for New England, or negative discourse surrounding Jones.
However, once again, Jones is in the news. This time, it seems as if the Patriots want to see some improved leadership from Mac Jones entering 2023.
Mike Reiss of ESPN discusses the plans for the Patriots’ offense going forward:
"“While they aim to put more support around Jones than they did in 2022, Belichick & Co. also want to see him step up as a leader. And they like the idea of Zappe — who was seeing an increase in practice reps by the end of last season — pushing him.”"
Mac’s leadership and locker room impact are likely important traits for Belichick and how Jones will be viewed as the quarterback moving forward. After coaching Tom Brady for most of his career, he’s seen first-hand how a good leader can impact winning on the highest level.
Also, having a competition at the position in Bailey Zappe should aim to motivate Jones to perform this season, as he’ll be pushing to keep his job under center. Putting the best players possible around him to succeed is crucial in Jones’ development, and it looks as if Belichick is trying to do just that.
Belichick and the coaching staff don’t seem to oppose giving Zappe the green light either. If anything, last season’s Monday night benching of Mac Jones against the Bears proved that. If Mac tends to struggle off the bat next season, it may not be too crazy to think Zappe gets a chance to start under center.
After a season of putting up about 3,000 yards, 14 touchdowns, and 11 interceptions in 14 games, the Patriots need some significant improvement at the position next season. In what should be a make-or-break season for Mac Jones in 2023, it will be interesting to see how the off-season and next season unfold.