Mike Jones did his best to prove that he should immediately become the team’s 2022 starting quarterback in the Patriots’ preseason debut. The rookie from Alabama did not perform well in the first round against Washington on Thursday night, but he won the night by beating Cam Newton and played well in the third quarter.
Jones designed a large number of dunks and dunks in New England’s horizontal and vertical offense. He showed all his advantages while still having some opportunities for his deep ball to flash. Jones (19 passes, 13 passes, 87 yards, 4.6 yards per attempt, 78.2 passes scored) brings veteran confidence to the pocket, similar to his performance in Crimson Tide’s latest championship battle.
The Patriots trusted Jones to handle all kinds of situations-they put him in the center position and shotgun, and his night ended in a series without crowds. He can cope with the challenge of passing the ball around and passing it quickly. Obviously, Jones has always been a quick study when it comes to Josh McDaniels’ complex script.
Jones cannot be blamed for Tuscaloosa’s superior system. He also didn’t waste time making the most of Foxborough’s other great system.
According to multiple reports from the training camp, Newton has been struggling with his accuracy and decision-making. The Patriots expect their passing game to be precise and rhythmic. Their catch advantage lies in the backcourt (James White), their new high-priced close end (Jonu Smith and healthy Hunter Henry) and open space (Jacobi Meyers). When White left the game, Jones was often dumped to replace JJ Taylor.
Jones also made full use of the five-line wide receiver Kristian Wilkerson (Kristian Wilkerson) as his first choice. His best shot of the night was an unfinished 34-yard shot against Wilkerson. It was a perfect throw to the left corner of the end zone and should have been caught. The data shows that Newton (4 of 7 shots, 49 yards, 7.0 yards per attempt, 78.9 rating) is a bit more efficient than Jones, but if Jones is out of the first team, the situation will be different. Jones passed his vision test without a doubt.
Compared with Jones, in addition to his years of experience, Newton’s biggest advantage lies in his supplementary rushing ability. Jones is an underrated athlete, but he will not add real running elements. But when Newton is not running and not executing on the short-circuit line, Jones is a better quarterback to meet the needs of the Patriots.
Bill Belichick will try to defensively and run to create enough victories to enter the AFC playoffs. The latter is powered by a solid offensive line and driven by Smith and Henry’s ability as blockers. The Patriots sometimes try to use new wide receivers Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne to expand the field, but most of these shots are calculated to calculate the risk in the game.
The Patriots giving Jones more action in his first game is a good sign. He gave them reason to want to see more, until he handed Newton to Brian Hoyer after five stable series.
Belichick has always insisted that Newton is the starter, but the preseason is very long and things may change soon. Jones should give him and McDaniels better information to make a decision. If Jones builds up this momentum in the subsequent practice against the Eagles next Thursday, it will become increasingly difficult for Newton to maintain his sudden shaky state.