The NFL media piled onto a recent report released by Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio on Tuesday, suggesting Bill Belichick had been shopping Patriots’ quarterback Mac Jones to several NFL teams this offseason.
Although confirmation bias allowed many to believe the allegations, particularly when recalling the reported tension between the two, Mark Daniels of Mass Live reached out to his league sources to gain clarification on the seemingly baseless story.
In his article published earlier on Tuesday, Daniels cited three different sources, all denying Florio’s report claiming Belichick had reached out to teams including the Bucs, Commanders, Raiders, and Texans, including sources working closely with two of said teams.
"“One NFL source said they hadn’t heard anything about the Patriots shopping Jones to any team this offseason, adding, “That’s news to me.” A second NFL source said the Patriots haven’t contacted the Buccaneers about Jones, saying his name “has never come up” this offseason. A third NFL source said the Patriots have not contacted the Raiders about a trade involving Jones, either.”"
All things considered, Belichick deciding to trade Jones this offseason wouldn’t make much sense, anyway.
Last season was a complete wash, and the head coach has taken the scrutiny for it since he decided to make Matt Patricia the offensive coordinator and Joe Judge the quarterback’s coach last spring. He has since removed Patricia from his position and presumably the team and moved Judge into a different role completely, indicating he is well aware of last year’s offensive disaster.
On top of those moves this offseason, he hired Bill O’Brien to take over play-calling duties again, an experienced offensive mind familiar with Jones from his days at Alabama.
Although he hasn’t publicly supported him as the QB1 going forward, even alluding to a quarterback competition this summer, the moves he has made over the last few months suggest a desire to build a better team of personnel to surround Jones and set him up for a better opportunity this upcoming season.
The move would also go against ownership, as Robert Kraft has consistently supported Jones throughout his two seasons in the NFL. He did so as recently as last week while attending the annual owner’s meeting in Phoenix.
And then there’s the entire point of trading a player, especially a quarterback.
A team will not shop a player they feel will not give them a desirable return. Unfortunately, Jones’ 2022 season was unimpressive, making it doubtful that many teams would be incredibly interested in acquiring the young quarterback at a high value.
Despite Belichick’s past of trading players below what many feel they are valued at, moving on from a former first-round quarterback as they enter their third season for anything less than what you used to acquire him would be a gigantic mistake, making those questioning Belichick’s decision making all the more valid.
So could Jones be dealt at some point in his career? Of course. Does it make any sense right now for the Patriots to do that? Absolutely not.