There are infinite opinions regarding what we've seen from Mac Jones thus far and the likely trajectory of his career in New England. Most of those who have discussed the quarterback's performance over the last three years have been fans or media members, not those who have worked with Jones directly.
But that changed last week, as Cam Newton shared his opinion on his former teammate during an appearance on Robert Griffin III's "RG3 and The Ones" podcast.
Despite his unfavorable time spent in New England for the 2020 season, Newton is among the more knowledgeable people to speak on Jones and his capabilities. He was there when he was drafted and worked out with him during the summer, ultimately losing the starting job to the rookie for the 2021 season.
Because of the struggles Jones has displayed at the start of the current season, most notably against the Cowboys last week, Newton was asked outright if Bill Belichick should bench him moving forward.
"Mac’s a baller, bro, and I saw this hands-on. Ultimate worker, ultimate competitor. He got that Alabama in him. So it was like, can’t really crack the code sometimes. It’d be like, ‘Loosen up, bro.'"
As one of the last remaining defenders of Jones outside of the fans, Newton continued to show his support for the third-year quarterback, claiming the best is still to come from him.
"I don’t think we’ve seen the best version of Mac Jones yet. It’s growing pains. But that ultimately comes down to the coaching staff and what have you."
Although most disagree and feel that we've seen enough from him since he arrived in 2021 to prove he isn't the right guy for the job as the Patriots quarterback, Newton has a better understanding of the difficulty that comes with not just being a quarterback of a historically successful franchise but also the first guy to take over after the departure of Tom Brady.
Much like Jones has experienced over the last two years, Newton dealt with constant negativity from the media, so much so that he mentioned that to RG3 when discussing the unique hardships Jones has to deal with playing for Boston.
"Playing in Boston is a different beast, bro. I was playing there in the COVID year. So I didn’t even see the crowd, right? Most of my time that I was there. We’re hearing the sports reporters, that news outlets, this and that. Belichick check has been able to manage it the best he knows how. Does he listen to it? He probably does."
Most fans would agree that much of Boston sports media is incredibly pessimistic and was even that way during the dynasty years despite how unbelievably successful they were. It's only gotten worse since the Patriots have been forced into a rebuild and continue to become more negative as the losses pile up.
That's what makes Newton's words about Jones feel even more important, given the current conversation surrounding his performance and future. We'll likely keep hearing him come to Jones' defense as long as he feels it's necessary since this is just the most recent example of Newton chiming in regarding the quarterback.