In the aftermath of a disappointing 24-17 loss to the Miami Dolphins on Sunday, New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones made headlines with what appeared to be a call-out to his teammates.
His comments sparked discussions, particularly in New England, about if there were Patriots who weren’t putting in as much work as they should.
Jones, during his post-game press conference, remarked: “Definitely got to play better and learn from it and be here early and leave late and do it together. I think that’s the biggest thing. If a couple guys are doing it, it’s not good enough, clearly.”
Mac Jones subtly calling out some teammates already.
Some people are putting in extra work, some aren’t.
— Savage (@SavageSports_) September 18, 2023
This statement prompted many to interpret his words as criticism of his teammates’ commitment and effort both on and off the field.
However, Jones took the opportunity on Monday to clarify his remarks during an interview with WEEI.
“No,” Jones said emphatically when asked if he was questioning his teammates’ dedication.
“I’m talking about being close so, whatever you’re doing, just do more. It’s not like it’s rocket science. If you watch 30 minutes of film, watch an hour. If you lift for 45 minutes, lift for an hour and a half. Just whatever you can do so that when we’re in this situation.”
“For me, that’s how I feel better about everything. You can only put in so much work. There’s 24 hours a day. You have to sleep for 8 to 10 of them. All of the other hours have to be about work.”
Jones’ comments reflect his intense commitment to the game and his desire for the entire team to continually strive for improvement and leave no stone unturned in their preparation.
Following the tough loss on Sunday, Jones reportedly sat in front of his locker, in full uniform, with a towel over his head for 20 minutes.
When asked about his thoughts during that moment, Jones said: “Mostly just reflection. Just trying to be where your feet are. Realize it’s a great game we get to play, but at the same time, you want to win because it’s not as fun when you don’t win. Just trying to gather my thoughts before I got to the podium or something like that.”
He continued: “But really just how can I lead the team throughout the week, really the next week is what I’m thinking about. What can I do better?.. It starts with me as a quarterback. I know we have a great group of guys. It’s not about that. It’s just a couple of unlucky breaks here or there, and we’re 2-0. Just have to keep pushing.”
Unfortunately, Jones doesn’t get the praise or recognition he deserves. (Not that he cares about that.) The fact is, he is truly one of the more underrated quarterbacks in the league despite having to put up with a lot of crap early on.
Last season was doomed from the start thanks to Bill Belichick’s decision to put Matt Patricia and Joe Judge in charge of the Patriots offense. (Unbelievable.)
Meanwhile, Jones has started this season off strong despite the team’s 0-2 record. You can’t help but wonder how much better the offense would be if Jones had a legitimate #1 weapon to throw to.
Regardless, what do you make of Jones’ comments?