04/05/2023 by Nick Antonakas
BOSTON – Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio shocked Patriots fans by breaking a story concerning trade rumors surrounding Mac Jones. Florio wrote that Bill Belichick has reportedly “shopped Jones to multiple teams during the 2023 offseason.”
While the full list of teams is unknown, and it’s still unsure if Jones will actually be traded, the Raiders, Texans, Buccaneers, and Commanders are listed as potential destinations for the Pats’ 15th overall pick in 2021. Florio suggested that a team hoping to draft a quarterback could “pivot to Jones” if they’re unable to get the guy they want.
Coming off of the NFL annual meeting in Phoenix, Jones seemed to be a safe bet to start at quarterback for New England in 2023, according to Patriots owner Robert Kraft. “I’m a big fan of Mac,” Kraft told reporters last week in Phoenix. “I think we experimented with some things last year that frankly didn’t work when it came to him.”
These recent reports point out the apparent contrast in opinions on the incoming third-year quarterback. While Kraft seems to still be in on Jones, Florio details that “things aren’t going well between…Bill Belichick and…Mac Jones.”
Florio joined NBC Sports Boston’s Patriots analysts Tom Curran and Phil Perry on the most recent episode of Tom Curran’s Patriots Talk Podcast to discuss the report. While all three were shocked solely by the fact that the information got out of the Alcatraz known as Bill Belichick’s office, Florio brought up hints Belichick dropped at the end of last season.
When posed with the question if Mac Jones is his starter next year, Florio pointed out how Belichick interestingly responded with the simple statement, “Mac Jones has proven he can play in this league.” While this may seem like a typical indirect and monotone Belichick answer, Florio questioned, “What would he say if asked that question about Tom Brady?” Florio’s point suggests the lack of confidence Belichick truly has in Jones by choosing not to flat out say ‘Jones is the starter’ and emphasizes the disconnect in opinion between Belichick and Kraft.
If there weren’t enough questions surrounding the Patriots and their 14th overall draft pick this year, these rumors add to that confusion. Only time will tell what New England will do at the NFL Draft that kicks off on April 27th.