New England Patriots football is back, and with that is an offense that has a new mojo. The Patriots' offense was full of energy on Wednesday morning, and it should have fans excited for what’s to come. The first day of camp was an overall positive day for the offense and quarterback Mac Jones.
The new energy and confidence started with Jones as he appears different from last year. I was down at training camp today, and I noticed that Jones looks stronger and in the best shape of his career. The confidence that Jones showed in the pocket and drills rubbed off on the rest of the offense. Positive energy always starts with the quarterback, and it looks like Jones has shifted his attitude this season.
The other notable change to the offense is new offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien. The change in coaching on the field is apparent as O’Brien was coaching up the receivers and setting up different offensive sets. A key focus for the Patriots was the red zone offense, which included a heavy dose of pick plays.
The best performance of the day was from Ty Montgomery, who appears to have switched to a full-time wide receiver again. Montgomery was effective in 7 on 7 as he caught four touchdown passes. Montgomery’s best play of the day was a jump ball catch over Marte Mapu.
The other positives were Juju Smith-Schuster and Kendrick Bourne, who had high energy on Wednesday morning. Smith-Schuster made it a point to get the crowd going early in practice, and Bourne matched his energy. It’s great to see Bourne so happy and full of energy on the field, considering how poor his season was a year ago. The Patriots will be relying on Smith-Schuster and Bourne to help elevate Jones this season.
The only downside at the receiver position was Tyquan Thorton, who struggled in drills and the 7 on 7 period. Thornton will need to pick it up as training camp progresses because he could find himself slipping down the depth chart. The Patriots will hope that Thorton can avoid a year two slump.
Overall, it was a positive first day of camp for the Patriots, and there is reason to be excited about the offense.