Over the past decade and more, one of the rarest things we’ve seen of the Patriots has been a newbie stepping in directly as a newbie from week one. Mac Jones is the obvious exception. And Cole String, who signed his contract yesterday, is a deadly lock to be the left guard of the jump. It could have been Isaiah Wynn, but he removed his Achilles in a pre-season game. For the most part, these people have to prove themselves first. Take, for example, Christian Barmore, Kyle Duger and Sonny Michele who were put into rotation at the start and got more playing time as their performances ensured that. Or Damian Harris, who was a season late for kindergarten before being inducted as a second-grader. Michael Onweno became a rookie player, but only after injuries forced him to work in emergencies and took full advantage of the opportunity. Nothing in Foxboro is given. It has happened.
Some choose to take this log evidence as dissatisfied with the wording. But to me, this is evidence of Bill Belichick’s master plan. For an organizational philosophy they build in the short and long term. as always. They are willing to be patient and allow someone to develop whenever possible, in order to have a fully reliable professional. If that meant sacrificing some or all of a man’s rookie production in order to get there, that’s the price they’ve traditionally been willing to pay. It definitely worked with the quarterback they drafted in in 2000 and stashed fourth on the depth chart for a year.
It’s clearly early in the semester draft process for this year. But in addition to Strange, one name keeps popping up because the man the writers think might have been the start of Game 1. Someone who happens to play a position The A critical need area for this team. Cornerback Jack Jones, their fourth pick, ranked 121st overall.
Source – One of the most important questions the Patriots ask as they enter training camp is who will replace JC Jackson as a starter, and Jack Jones has quickly positioned himself to challenge for the role.
It probably won’t surprise explorer and front office executive TJ McCreight, who tweeted that Jones was his fourth-round pick. In addition to Jones’ physical traits and refined instincts, McCrite highlighted how Jones was coached by Herm Edwards (a former DB player himself), Marvin Lewis and Donny Henderson at Arizona State, so he actually benefited from an NFL-wide tutelage.
“It’s a good place for him [New England]In an interview with ESPN.com, Edwards said, “There will be people who keep their thumbs on it.” He said.
Yeeeahhh… something about keeping a thumbs up. This is what I wrote in a draft preview for Jones:
Jones was recruited to the University of Southern California where he led the team with four interceptions in 14 starts as a sophomore. But as they say in every 30 for 30, “Outside the field, there were signs of trouble…” he was declared academically ineligible (which will happen in the name of USC when your mom isn’t a sitcom star) and then arrested on charges Misdemeanor break-in and enter a restaurant after hours. After a season at Juco, he transferred to ASU and was soon suspended for all but one match for the always-mysterious “violation of team rules”. Despite all of that, his skill sets explain why he’s so heavily recruited and given second and third chances. …. But there is enough knack that with some chiseling and polishing, the diamond inside can be found under all that rock.
Judging by those who were paying attention to the limited practices of Bates and people around the team, there was less need for chiseling and polishing than suggested by fools like myself. More from T.J. McCreight:
Same source – “Instincts and Outstanding Eyes.” McCrite said on Ross Tucker’s Football Podcast “Great sense of methods, great ball skills and hands.”
“He has the physical ability. He is big enough [5-foot-10 6/8]. It is fast enough. You see him doing some small things. He banned kicks in high school. He’s blocked kicks in his career.
“He has ball production; he can catch. He had a pick of six [vs. Arizona]Throwing the ball into the stands. He has some moxi. …to me, that was a steal because he’d be well trained in New England now. And you have a playmaker man.”
And according to SunDevil Express, not only was Jones one of the top cornerstones of his recruiting class, he was a co-owner of the B&E he committed to at Panda Express:
Prior to college, Jones was a five-star 247Sports Composite recruit from Long Beach (California) Long Beach Poly. He was also the 19th player in the overall standings and second in the cornerback in the 2016 recruiting category.
“Honestly, it was a humbling experience,” Jones previously said of his time away from college football. “Football was almost taken away from me for life. It made me open my eyes. There was no greater wake-up call than that. Sitting at home, I couldn’t play football for a year – that’s my life, that’s what I do, that’s what I want.” It was really just a big wake-up call, as if you had to do it right or it could all be gone with the touch of a finger.
“As I’ve been telling Scouts, I’m a guy who’s been through something. I know how to deal with adversity, I know how to get over the hump.”
Aside from the obvious difference that JC Jackson’s tours of his college career didn’t include Chinese fast food in malls, Mike Reese isn’t alone in mentioning the two at the same time. Let’s move on to the video:
My impression of the guy from the only practice I went into is that he has all the raw materials and good instincts to reverse the receiver and stick to his hip, as Jackson does. It’s small (174 pounds) compared to the kinds of angles they’ve been attracted to over the past few years. But then again, so does Terek Hill. So is Emmanuel Sanders (180 pounds), who blew up much larger Guyjuan Williams as if he was a highway sign on his way to a 34-yard Wild Card touchdown. As long as there is still room in the league for elite junior athletes on the offensive side of the line, there will be room for less than 180 angles to cling to and be “competitors” (Herm Edwards’ term), have a “moxie” (McKrite), and was a No. 2 recruit In the country outside high school. Not to mention, this team loves the guy who failed college and worked through them (he went to Juco to work his way back to DI in Arizona), and is hungry to prove the skeptics wrong.
We haven’t yet seen these guys in the pads. He can stand for a few weeks hitting the training table to get a man’s ration of protein and carbs. But if Jack Jones were a company issuing an IPO, I would invest heavily in him. Everything I see and hear about him tells me he’s going to be Bates’ starting corner. If not in week 1, then shortly thereafter. Mark it.