Mac Jones has first assertion exhibiting with Patriots after going toe to toe with Tom Brady in loss to Bucs

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Main as much as the Patriots-Buccaneers “Sunday Evening Soccer” matchup in Week 4, the discuss of the NFL centered round Tom Brady and his return to New England to face his former crew for the primary time. Whereas the Tampa Bay quarterback was capable of go away his former stomping grounds victorious, it is Patriots first-round rookie Mac Jones, who stole some eyeballs away from the quarterback’s homecoming at Gillette Stadium. 

Within the 19-17 loss, Jones turned in his finest efficiency of his younger profession. The primary-round rookie accomplished 31 of his 40 passes for 275 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. At one level, Jones accomplished 19 straight throws for 180 yards and two touchdowns. Not solely was he enjoying at his finest since placing on a Patriots uniform, he was outdueling the quarterback who’s the best participant to ever reside in Foxborough in Brady, who completed 22 of 43 passing for 269 yards and no touchdowns. 

Not solely was Jones environment friendly, however he unfold the ball round, hitting 9 completely different move catches (seven with a number of receptions). Jones additionally was calculated with the place he attacked within the passing recreation. For example, he was 7 of 7 for 74 yards at one point in the game when focusing on Bucs nook Richard Sherman, who had simply signed with Tampa Bay this week and had solely three practices underneath his belt. That sort of consciousness to check and exploit attainable weaknesses is spectacular for somebody enjoying in simply their fourth NFL recreation. Jones additionally did all that with successfully no working recreation to alleviate him as New England rushed for -1 yard as a membership in Week 4. 

“I feel we executed effectively,” Jones stated postgame. “Effectively clearly not adequate to win however Josh [McDaniels] did an amazing job and I feel it was good for us to study that we did not put all of it collectively however we bought near placing all of it collectively and enjoying a full recreation collectively. Once we can do this, I feel constructive issues will occur. We did not; we will be 90 p.c or 85 p.c and also you lose. We do not actually do ethical victories. These are at all times forgotten. However you simply type of need to take it for what it is value and transfer on.”

Regardless of the general sturdy efficiency, there have been some rookie lumps for Jones. He threw an interception on a first-quarter throw supposed for Nelson Agholor that most likely should not have even gone his means. The Alabama product almost had one other decide following his run of 19-straight completions deep in Tampa Bay territory whereas attempting to drive a ball in a gap whereas rolling out proper. 

“You understand, we made performs and performed exhausting the entire recreation and I turned the ball over,” he stated. “That is one of many issues, you recognize, turnovers can kill you, and you recognize should you flip the ball over – For those who do not flip the ball over, you have got a 90-something p.c probability to win, and it is simply statistics however I’ve thought we moved the ball, passing effectively and the run recreation wants to enhance and we’ll give you methods to do this. I assumed everybody fought actually exhausting. It sucks we misplaced however yeah, take a look at it, such as you stated, that we’re making some progress.” 

Even within the loss, nevertheless, it is exhausting not strolling away with the sensation that the Patriots have a respectable long-term reply underneath heart, which is becoming with Brady looming on the opposing sideline all through the night. 

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