Insider: ‘Reason to believe’ Mac Jones not prepared for Year 2


The Buffalo Bills have made the playoffs in three straight years and are a wild postseason overtime loss to the Kansas City Chiefs away from having made back-to-back conference championships. The Miami Dolphins have had two consecutive winning seasons, were one of the hottest teams in the second half of the 2021 campaign and had a massive offseason with the addition of Tyreek Hill.

While the expectations for the New York Jets are still widely on the lower side, it’s fair to wonder where the New England Patriots will end up in the AFC East standings in 2022. Even though the Patriots bounced back from a disappointing 2020 season (their first without Tom Brady) to qualify for the playoffs under then-rookie quarterback Mac Jones, the team had a relatively uneventful offseason in terms of free agency and trades, with wideout DeVante Parker being arguably their biggest addition.

With final cuts for NFL rosters coming in the next 24-plus hours, Chad Graff of The Athletic looked at his “53-man roster projection 2.0” for New England on Monday. Graff had some interesting things to say about the outlook of the team, particularly Jones coming into this second season.

“The questions here aren’t about the depth chart or who’s going to make the team — they’re about how Jones will look in Miami in Week 1,” Graff wrote, regarding his quarterbacks positional projection. “There’s reason to believe he isn’t fully prepared for Year 2. His new de facto offensive coordinator has never coordinated on that side of the ball, his offensive line has been a mess and he’s had little to no running game throughout the preseason. Maybe that explains the struggles for the starting offense in training camp. But it’s also not entirely fair to absolve Jones. He threw a bad interception against the Raiders that was right at a waiting linebacker. There’s still plenty of time for Jones to turn things around and deliver a great season, but it was far from the preseason he and the team were hoping for.”