Mac Jones hasn’t been playing like a confident quarterback this season for the Patriots. He doesn’t look comfortable in the pocket, he’s making ill-advised throws and just never took the step many thought he would in a critical Year 3.
If you ask Julian Edelman, though, he thinks Jones is playing without confidence because he lost it.
“It’s just been tough for Mac to execute in the high-pressure situations and it comes down to his confidence. He’s lost his confidence, and once you lose your confidence in this league, it’s tough,” Edelman said during his appearance on “The Herd With Colin Cowherd.” “I remember there was a couple times where you drop a ball or something here or there, and you start thinking about it the next play. Easy play, oh this is going to be easy, and when you’re thinking about things, it’s not allowing you to play fast. It’s not allowing your subconscious to kick in, and instincts play the game for you, and that’s what it’s been right now. He’s just lost his confidence. It sucks for him, but that’s what happened.”
Aside from being benched on three separate occasions — the latest coming on the final drive in Week 10 with the game still winnable — Jones has also thrown 10 interceptions. Only Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen has more with 11.
Some have made the argument that Jones having three offensive coordinators in as many seasons might have something to do with his inability to really grow. But Edelman isn’t buying that, telling Cowherd that Bill O’Brien and Josh McDaniels have “the same scheme.”
“There’s a couple of wrinkles here and there, but you’re fundamentally doing the same things,” Edelman said.
Edelman didn’t go as far to say that Jones should ask for a release from the Patriots like his former teammate Rob Gronkowski did. But he hasn’t been afraid to be critical of the third-year quarterback and his “rookie-type throws.”
For now, Jones and the rest of the Patriots enjoy a bye week before playing the New York Giants on Nov. 26. Whether he’ll be the starter remains to be seen, but it’s hard to imagine Jones’ confidence growing if he doesn’t get the start.