With so many changes inevitably coming this offseason for the Patriots in its entirety, there are a lot of questions about what new head coach Jerod Mayo will do with the quarterback position. Most believe that given their high draft pick, they'll take one of the top players of the class. But there is also some speculation suggesting Mac Jones could get another chance.
Many may not want to see that, but prioritizing improving the offense via the draft and free agency may be the route Mayo takes to address bringing in the right guy next year.
Although it seems improbable, especially considering Mayo was with the team to see firsthand how poorly Jones has played over the last two years, former safety Devin McCourty feels the door is still open for his return to the lineup for one reason: a new offensive coordinator.
While speaking to MassLive on their "Eye On Foxborough" podcast recently, McCourty shared his belief that whoever is hired to replace Bill O'Brien may be willing to work with Jones and give him another chance. Because his performance at Alabama impressed scouts and teams, he believes that may be the case with a new OC who liked what he saw from Jones during his college days and desires to bring that player back with his help.
“Maybe the offensive coordinator you bring in loved him coming out (of college). That’s another element that could come into play. So whoever becomes the next offensive coordinator, if they come in and they’re like, ‘Hey, I know, everyone is projecting us taking ... Drake Maye or Jayden Daniels. But listen to me, I’m telling you, let’s take Marvin Harrison Jr.
‘’' I loved Mac Jones coming out. I can work with him. You give us Marvin Harrison Jr., we can now do something else, whatever they decide to figure out.’ So I think that’s two-fold. You have to find your guy first, your offensive coordinator.’'
That would certainly make sense despite the number of people who have already concluded Jones is a lost cause. A new OC isn't necessarily the right move for a player who has already had three in three years, but maybe a coach who has a bigger vision for what Jones could be and is willing to hone in on his craft would be willing to give it another go, at least for the last year of his contract.
It could also be decided even if the Patriots draft a quarterback. They may want to stick with a veteran for the season to allow the rookie to learn and develop, which could be Jones's job.
But if you ask McCourty what he would do, he would trade him if given the opportunity.
“Right now, without having that offensive coordinator, if you’re asking my opinion, I’d move on from Mac and start from scratch. I think it would help him to be elsewhere ... So I think if the opportunity comes to trade him, I think it will help both sides.”
New England will reportedly decline his fifth-year option, but they've left the door open for Jones to stay with the team or trade him. So, who knows what's going to happen? We'll have to wait and see.