The New England Patriots drafted a quarterback in the first-round of this year’s NFL Draft for a specific reason. The future. However, if the future is now, then Bill Belichick and the Patriots are not going to wait very long.
There’s clearly a quarterback competition in New England between rookie Mac Jones and veteran Cam Newton. It was presumed that Newton would be the starter to open the season. However, Jones has been better than expected at this point in his transition to the Patriots. In some instances he’s been better than Newton.
— Pats-Stats (@Pats__Stats) August 14, 2021
Over the course of training camp, Newton and Jones have grown to know each other and form a small friendship. There is a 10 year age difference between the two quarterbacks. However, that doesn’t stand in Newton’s way of trying to connect with his young teammate, despite a position battle.
“He’s relatively quiet sometimes, and I try to crack the Da Vinci Code of the seriousness… He’s serious sometimes for no reason.” – Cam Newton, via Phil Perry of NBC Sports Boston
I wouldn’t say that Jones being serious more often than not is necessarily a bad thing. He’s trying to learn the complexity of the Patriots playbook so he can be prepared for anything that’s asked of him on the field. Which shouldn’t be too surprising, as Jones is a former player at Alabama and played for Nick Saban.
Here’s what Newton said about the intricate way Jones prepares.
“Every young quarterback goes through it. The excitement. The anticipation. He wants to be so perfect. And I see his preparation is always pristine. That’s what I admire about him, at such a young age, he knows how to prepare. He knows when Josh [McDaniels] asks good questions, or when a person asks good questions, he knows how to kinda have answers for it.” – Cam Newton, via Phil Perry of NBC Sports Boston
During this same interview with the former league MVP, Newton goes on to say that he’ll be there for Jones throughout “this process.” The process that one would assume is Jones transitioning into the starting quarterback of the Patriots sooner rather than later. To which, the writing is clearly written on the wall for Newton and the rest of the NFL to see.
“Everybody learns different, but he’s just going to keep getting better, and we’re going to be here for each other along this whole process.” – Cam Newton, via Phil Perry of NBC Sports Boston
It doesn’t take a scientist to see the writing is on the wall for Newton. And he’s beginning to notice it as well. The big question mark surrounding Newton is whether or not he will be okay with being a backup or not. It could work into New England’s favor if Newton becomes unhappy with his role later on down the road. In that scenario, the Patriots could earn a valuable draft pick in return for Newton.
However, that only works if Jones is succeeding and leading the team to victories. If all of that does unfold, then maybe the New England Patriots won’t need Newton anymore. That said, however, I don’t believe coach Belichick goes into the season without a veteran quarterback on the roster. That being Newton or Brian Hoyer.
All in all, the Patriots have a lot to look forward to in their near future with Jones being under center. It’s only a short matter of time before Jones takes control of starting quarterback duties.
“Honestly, at this point, I’d go so far as to say it’s not a quarterback competition anymore. Mac Jones will be the starting quarterback for the Patriots this year. Cam Newton is just keeping the seat warm until the oven timer dings and Mac can be served to the NFL.” – Tom E Curran, via NBC Sports Boston
-Justin Trombino (@Trombino20 on Twitter)
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(Featured Image courtesy of: USA Today)