3 things New England Patriots need to do to get back to the Super Bowl

Brandon Bolden #25 of the New England Patriots. (Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images)
Brandon Bolden #25 of the New England Patriots. (Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images) /
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New England Patriots
Mac Jones #10 of the New England Patriots (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

New England Patriots third step to get back to the Super Bowl: Continue to develop Mac Jones

The quarterback position is arguably the most important position in not just the NFL, but in the entire sporting world. The Patriots dynasty was fueled in part because of Brady’s constant greatness at the position. Heck, the Bengals and Rams both got their quarterback situations figured out this season and rode it all the way to the Super Bowl.

New England appears to have it’s quarterback of the future in Mac Jones. Jones was solid if unspectacular in his rookie season, but he did what needed to be done to win games, and he led his team to the playoffs in his first season. And sure, the result in their Wild Card game wasn’t what anyone supporting the team wanted to see, but you can’t help but be encouraged by what Jones did in his first professional season.

The previous two steps are geared towards making Jones’ life easier, but in order for the Patriots to get to their final destination, they are going to need Jones to continue to develop and grow over the next few seasons. Nobody was asking him to win a Super Bowl in his first season, and the fact that he made the playoffs was a surprise in it’s own right.

But now the expectations have been set. We saw what Jones was able to accomplish in his first season with a fairly limited cast of playmakers at his disposal. He’s going to be expected to take a step forward next season, especially if he gets some more help alongside him on offense. And based on what we saw this season, that’s not an unrealistic expectation.

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In a conference with heavyweights such as Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen, and now Joe Burrow, Jones is going to have to be able to go toe-to-toe with these guys at some point if the Patriots intend on making it back to the Super Bowl. Even the best gameplans go up in flames sometimes, and you need your quarterback to step up and take charge when that happens (think the 2019 AFC Championship Game against the Chiefs).

Jones wasn’t able to do that this season, and he may not be able to for the next couple of seasons, and that’s fine. But Jones is going to have to continue to grow and develop as a star quarterback in this league, otherwise New England won’t have shot of advancing out of a packed AFC for the foreseeable future.