Because of the roller-coaster career that Mac Jones has had so far in the NFL, plus the fact that he is the quarterback of the New England Patriots, he's received more than his fair share of criticism over the last two years.
Some of it has been warranted; other times, it has not. But after his performance against the Eagles on Sunday, one of his teammates couldn't stop gushing about the kind of player and man that Jones is.
Despite the losing effort to win the game in the fourth quarter, Jones' performance stood out and clearly indicated what to expect from the quarterback in his third season.
Hunter Henry was one of the players to speak about that after the game, sharing his passionate belief in what Jones can do and how much he enjoys playing alongside him.
"I'll just say this about Mac, man: I’ll go to battle with No. 10 any day of the week. I love competing with that guy every single day, and I’ll go to war with him wherever it is, man – conditions cold, rainy, beautiful day, a hot day, whatever it is. The dude's a competitor, and it’s fun to go out there and play with a guy like that."
It's unsurprising to hear this kind of take from Henry, who has developed a close friendship with Jones since arriving in New England two years ago. But it's such a contrast to what has been said about the quarterback over the past year and proves how much has changed in that time as well.
On top of that, it's even more evidence of how good of a teammate Jones has been despite his troubles during his short career.
After the problematic 2022 season raised questions about his maturity and leadership, statements like Henry's mean a lot more than they typically would, mainly as Jones has spoken about hoping to earn his coaches' and teammates' trust and confidence.
Based on his performance in the first game of the season, it looks like he will easily continue to solidify himself as a leader of the team and regain the trust of those who questioned him last season. And it wouldn't be surprising to hear more of Jones' teammates speak highly of him as Henry did on Sunday evening.