The opening night of the 2021 NFL Draft is in the books.
We expected plot twists and trades, but very few expected that the New England Patriots would land one of the fab five quarterbacks of this draft class without trading up.
According to the pre-draft buzz, it seemed Alabama Mac Jones was destined to go to San Francisco with their third overall pick.
When he did not, many wondered how long he would wait for a call and who would be calling him.
The phone finally rang, and the GOAT Bill Belichick was on the other end of the phone line holding the 15th pick.
Jones strolled out, greeted Commissioner Roger Goodell, and told NFL Network’s Melissa Stark that he always wanted to go to the Patriots.
Mac Jones is perfect for the Patriots and sliding in the draft will put a nice Tom Brady-esque chip on his shoulder. Pats fans should be excited about this. pic.twitter.com/yZdqITEOre
— Molly McGrath (@MollyAMcGrath) April 30, 2021
It is an unlikely pairing of Jones and the perceived starting quarterback Cam Newton.
How good will Mac Jones be with the Patriots?
No one knows for sure, but he has a lot of positive things in his favor that can help him be successful.
He Is A New England Patriot.
Mac Jones to the Patriots. Absolute perfect fit. First quarterback Bill Belichick has ever taken in the first round as a head coach. Pretty amazing.
— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) April 30, 2021
Never mind the Patriots did not qualify for the playoffs last year after Tom Brady left, this organization knows how to win.
We already mentioned that he has Bill Belichick on his sideline.
Bill Belichick and the Patriots just spent a lot of money in free agency because they want to prove they can win without Tom Brady.
Josh McDaniels is his offensive coordinator; he is a highly reputable offensive mind in the NFL.
He Can Learn From Cam Newton.
Giving Mac Jones a year to grow into the starting quarterback job is a great situation for him.
Like any other rookie quarterback, he has mechanics that can be improved.
Training alongside Cam Newton can help him.
Fans Will Welcome Him.
The Boston area is hungry for a young quarterback.
No one will ever fill Tom Brady’s shoes, but a new young talent brings excitement and hope to the Patriots.
Early similarities between them are humorous.
You: "Stop the inevitable Tom Brady/Mac Jones comparisons. It's silly and contrived."
— Alex Kirshner (@alex_kirshner) April 30, 2021
There is a Nick Saban Connection.
Bill Belichick and Nick Saban are good friends.
Belichick clearly had good intel on Mac Jones from Saban.
He has a history of trusting Saban’s players.
Jones is the 11th Saban-coached player that Belichick has drafted.
Mac Jones becomes the 11th player Bill Belichick has drafted that played under Nick Saban in college, extending the record for the most players taken by a pro-college coach combo in the Common Draft era.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 30, 2021
In March, Saban spoke about Jones saying:
“Really a hard worker, good leader, the guy is really committed to being the best player he can be.”
Mac Jones certainly recognizes a good opportunity when he sees it; this is the second big one of his young career.
Reflecting on the opportunity to play for Saban at Alabama, Jones said:
“It was how he did things, and that was how I envisioned my process going. I was going to come in, and he said ‘no one is going to develop you better as a player, as a student, and as a person. Everything is set up for you to be successful, but at the same time you have to put in the work.’ I just looked at it like this is a crazy opportunity that I can’t turn down. I might not play right away, but I am going to grind and it was better that way. I really did not want it any other way. You have to earn the keys to the offense.”
His path into the NFL could be very similar.