Jonnu Smith on struggles in Week 3: ‘Eats me up the most as a competitor’

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New England Patriots tight end Jonnu Smith has turned into a scapegoat after the team’s 28-13 loss to the New Orleans Saints in Week 3.

On the Patriots’ first drive of the second half, Smith was the intended target for a quick pass from Mac Jones, but the tight end stumbled and dropped the ball, tipping it into the air for safety Malcolm Jenkins to intercept the pass. Jenkins then returned the ball for a touchdown.

“Mac threw a catchable ball, Mac did everything right,” Smith said on Monday. “I’ve just got to make that play that I know I can make and that I will make when the opportunity presents itself.”

Smith finished the game with one catch for four yards on six targets. He had been solid, but not great for New England going into the game. This season, he has recorded 10 catches for 74 yards.

“That’s the least of my worries is me being comfortable in the system. I’m extremely comfortable in this system, comfortable with my role in the system,” Smith said. “You know, my biggest thing is my teammates man and this organization and just not performing well enough to put us in a position to win. That’s what eats me up the most as a competitor.”

New England signed Smith and Hunter Henry in free agency, where they inked contracts paying them third-most per year among tight ends ($12.5 million annually). To this point, they have combined for just 20 catches, 183 yards and no touchdowns.

“I got to have a certain level of honesty with myself in the mirror, man,” Smith said. “But the great thing about it is I have another opportunity. I didn’t put my best product and myself out there yesterday. I know that, the whole world knows that.”

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