Mac Jones sought recommendation from Cam Newton forward of the New England Patriots’ preseason debut
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – New England Patriots quarterback Cam Newton said rookie Mac Jones is sometimes so quiet he tries to crack “the Da Vinci Code of Seriousness,” but that didn’t stop Jones from seeing Newton before Thursday night preseason – Start against the Washington Football Team.
“He came and talked to me and we just talked about his expectations. Every young quarterback goes through it – the excitement, the anticipation,” Newton said after the Patriots’ 22-13 win at Gillette Stadium. “He wants to be so perfect and I see that his preparation is always flawless. That’s what I admire about him.”
Jones relieved Newton after two series on Thursday night and received a standing ovation from many in attendance as he took the field 55 seconds behind in the first quarter.
He played five series and went 13 of 19 for 87 yards with no touchdowns and no interceptions. The first series took place behind the offensive line of the team’s first unit, an indication of how the coaching staff sees its progress so far.
The Patriots scored two field goals while Jones was quarterback, although it could easily have been a touchdown. His best throw of the evening was one of his imperfections, a deep pass over the left sideline on his first drive, which receiver Kristian Wilkerson lost in the end zone.
“It was a great Mac ball,” said Wilkerson. “I just have to adjust to it better [and] do my part. “
Coach Bill Belichick also let Jones run the no-huddle offensive to open the third quarter, stating that the team didn’t get the ball late in the second quarter to create such a situation.
Regarding the overall performance of Jones, who commanded offense, Belichick said, “Some good things, some things we can improve. That goes for everyone.”
Patriots fans showered Jones with applause, and some began a chant around the stadium in hopes he would get back into the game by the end of the fourth quarter. In the meantime, teammates have noticed the progress he’s making – on and off the field.
“He works, learns from everyone, attacks it,” said retiring veteran James White. “It’s not easy to be a quarterback in this league.”
“It definitely seemed like he had a little composure while he was out there,” added linebacker Josh Uche.
The Patriots are now starting preparations for their second preseason game against the Eagles next Thursday in Philadelphia. The teams will hold two training days together on Monday and Tuesday.
Newton, in his 11th NFL season, was excited to turn the page with the Alabama first-round draft pick.
“Everyone learns differently, but they keep getting better and we will be there for each other throughout the process,” Newton said.