New England Patriots QB Mac Jones makes a believer out of Rex Ryan

New England Patriots (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
New England Patriots (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

While Mac Jones had one of his critics basking in all his glory Saturday night, the New England Patriots rookie quarterback did make a believer out of another critic for his performance during the team’s 27-17 loss to the Indianapolis Colts.

Of course, Kansas City Chiefs fanboy and Boston sports hater Nick Wright used every Jones’ mistake or missed opportunity to support his case that Bill Belichick has no faith in his rookie quarterback. But surprisingly Rex Ryan, another Mac Jones doubter, looked at the same performance as proof that the Alabama product is a legit NFL quarterback.

Though a pair of interceptions came at critical times in the game, Jones bounced back completing 26 of 45 passes for 299 yards and two touchdowns to Hunter Henry in leading the Patriots back within a field goal after falling down to the Colts 20-0.

New England Patriots rookie quarterback Mac Jones makes a believer out of one of his critics

No, Jones didn’t complete the comeback, but in Ryan’s opinion, he did show he could come back from a deficit and win a game with his arm.

The former NFL coach and Patriots archrival took back his description of Jones as a “peashooter” on ESPN’s “Sunday NFL Countdown,” stating that the rookie proved something to him in the Wee 15 loss.

"“I will say this about New England, about your Patriots: Look, I was laughing about the peashooter and all that type of stuff,” Ryan said, as transcribed by WEEI. “But he showed me that in the fourth quarter — that’s one thing he had to answer. Could he bring a team back? He did bring his team back. So, to me, that’s gotta be encouraging as well for the Patriots.”"

In leading his team back, Jones completed a 43yard bomb to N’Keal Harry, which led to the second touchdown pass to Henry.  His ability to get the ball down field was proof that Mac Jones does have that capability when the team needs it.  He did prove that with a long touchdown pass to Kendrick Bourne back in the overtime loss to the Dallas Cowboys.

Still, there will be critics like the “First Things First” co-host Nick Wright, who has this narrative going that the Patriots don’t trust Jones as evident by their decision to kick a field goal instead of going for it on fourth-and-goal which would’ve brought the team within one score vs two scores at the time.

As it turned out, the New England Patriots would’ve had enough time to tie the game with a field goal if the defense were able to stop Jonathan Taylor and the Colts with just over two minutes left in the game.

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In all, what the game against Indianapolis proved is that Mac Jones is privy to mistakes as opposing defenses attack him in different ways.  He is a rookie after all.  But, the promising aspect of the performance, as Ryan emphasized, is he can overcome mistakes and lead his offense back from a deficit.  Still, it’s a small sample, but lets also remember, the training wheels haven’t been completely taken off yet.