Two former NFL QBs slam Patriots’ handling of Mac Jones

·2 min read

The New England Patriots looked anemic offensively in their regular season opener against the Miami Dolphins, and one thing in particular that has irked at least a couple of former NFL quarterbacks has been the team’s handling of Mac Jones.

On NFL Countdown, ahead of the Patriots’ Week 2 matchup with the Pittsburgh Steelers, ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reported an unnamed former NFL quarterback saying that Jones ‘went from first class’ under Josh McDaniels to ‘pre-K with this team.’

It’s hard to argue considering Jones looks nothing like the quarterback that earned a Pro Bowl nod in his rookie season. Former three-time Pro Bowl quarterback Matt Hasselbeck spoke on the issues as well on the NFL Countdown panel, and he didn’t hold back.

“I know you’re defensive gurus — fine,” said Hasselbeck, via CBS Boston. “But you don’t understand what it looks like and feels like for the quarterback. The hardest thing for a quarterback on the road especially is third-and-6 or more so what did they do? They made it complicated.

“…You did this to yourself, Patriots coaching staff. You did this to yourself. So stop trying to prove how smart you are. Simplify. This guy played — he was the best rookie quarterback in the NFL last year, because he had training wheels on most of the time, and he did a lot. He played really well. There’s nothing wrong with that. You don’t have to prove how much you know. Make it simpler.”

Things have felt a bit weird in New England with coach Bill Belichick opting to turn former defensive coordinator Matt Patricia into the offensive play-caller, instead of hiring a more experienced assistant in that particular role.

It’s too late to turn back at this point, and the Patriots are going to have to work through their issues if they have any hopes of a successful season.

The road for the team won’t get any easier with Sunday’s matchup featuring a meeting with the Pittsburgh Steelers’ vaunted defense. Then they’ll move on to a pair of tough outings against the Baltimore Ravens and Green Bay Packers.

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Story originally appeared on Patriots Wire