Patriots rookie quarterback Mac Jones has been very solid over his first 12 NFL games and has been the best QB to come out of the 2021 NFL Draft to this point.
So, what has he been like to coach for offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, especially when it comes to within a given game?
“Those conversations, it depends on the series, but he’s a guy who wants to do everything the best he can," McDaniels said via video conference Tuesday. "If he for some reason didn’t have great success in a series then he has an urgency about him and a desire to go out there and do it better. … Let’s just focus on what happened. Let’s learn from each play that we can look at on the pictures and talk about and make sure if it comes up again, which there’s a chance that it will, that we get it right if we happen to not get it right the first time.
“He’s a very good listener. He’s in-tune with what happened. He usually gives me very good feedback for what he saw, which is a great sign for a young player. You can say, ‘Hey, did he rotate late? Yeah, he rotated late.’ Then you look on the picture and you see that he did. We always try to tell the young guys don’t make something up. If you’re not sure just say, ‘I’m not sure.’ He usually has a really good grasp on what happened on the series he just was out there for and we have good dialogue about it. He has good answers to any questions that I have. He has a great attitude of going out there and doing everything right, which I love.”
With all the success he's had, on the outside some have changed their expectations for him. McDaniels explained how expectations have changed for him.
“I think what happens naturally with a young player, and this is really pretty much across the board at all positions, the more you feel like they understand what they are doing and the more your see it happen properly in practice, I think it naturally changes what you’re asking them to do," he said. "My expectations for him each week would be to execute the things that I have seen him execute in practice and do them well in the game under pressure. We might have added some things to that bucket as the year has gone on, but I would say the singular games themselves, they don’t change because we’re not going to ask him to do 12 things that I have never seen him do on the practice field very well and then I am going to be disappointed what he does on the game field.
"My expectations are just to go out there, let’s have the best practice week we can. If we don’t feel good about something we toss it out and now I know you can do these things well, and I expect that to happen on Sunday. That’s what my expectations will continue to be.”
Jones and the Patriots will have their biggest test of the year this Monday night, facing the best defense in the league in the Bills.
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