Mac Jones played three seasons at Alabama and was a backup to two future NFL quarterbacks Tua Tagovailoa and Jalen Hurts. He won the Alabama job in 2020 and led the Crimson Tide to a national championship. In his junior season, he threw 41 touchdown passes and had 4,500 passing yards. He was an All-American and won the Davey O’Brien and Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Awards before turning pro.
The New England Patriots selected with the No. 15 pick of the 2021 NFL Draft. He came into the 2021 offseason with questions over how he would handle Bill Belichick’s offense but he quickly became a contender for the job. He beat out other backups like Brian Hoyer and Jarrett Stidham and then eventually knocked Cam Newton from the top spot. Jones was named the starting quarterback for the start of the 2021 season. The Patriots released Newton and named Jones the starter simultaneously.
Jones will have big shoes to fill as he takes over in wake of the legacy Tom Brady left behind. Brady won six Super Bowls with the Patriots before bouncing to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, where he won another Super Bowl title. Jones comes into his rookie season with plenty of high expectations and questions over whether he has reached his ceiling already or whether he can continue to grow and build a lasting legacy with the franchise that had been on top for nearly two decades. He was a prime Rookie of the Year candidate and is part of a young crop of quarterbacks representing the NFL’s future.