3 Patriots Draft Picks Who Are Officially Busts Following 2023 Season

The New England Patriots don't always strike gold when it comes to their draft picks. Now that the 2023 NFL season is in the books, it's officially time to label these three former picks as busts.

Mac Jones is officially a bust after the 2023 NFL season.
Mac Jones is officially a bust after the 2023 NFL season. / Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports
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With the NFL offseason in full swing, New England Patriots fans are already looking ahead to April's draft. The Patriots hold the third overall selection at the 2024 NFL Draft, giving them a chance to select a franchise-altering player after missing the playoffs in three of the last four seasons.

There's also a portion of the fanbase that's looking back at past draft classes. While it's fun to look back to see which picks the Patriots struck gold with, an exercise like that also leads to fans declaring which selections wound up being busts. After all, New England hasn't always had the best track record when it comes to its draft history.

With that in mind, here are three Patriots draft picks who are officially busts following the 2023 NFL season.

1. QB Mac Jones — 2021 Round 1, Pick 15

The Patriots used the 15th overall selection at the 2021 NFL Draft to select Mac Jones as their franchise quarterback. The rumor at the time was that Bill Belichick wanted to draft Stanford's Davis Mills, however, his scouts allegedly convinced him to go with Jones.

While Mills hasn't exactly had the best career so far, Jones certainly hasn't lived up to his draft status. After making it to the Pro Bowl as a rookie, the Jacksonville, FL native has regressed more and more in each of the last two seasons. The 2023 campaign was a new low for Jones as he threw for 2,120 yards, 10 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions with a 77.0 passer rating while leading the Pats to a 2-9 record in 11 starts.

Adding insult to injury, Jones was replaced by Bailey Zappe on four separate occasions. Considering how Zappe wasn't much better, it goes to show just how far Jones fell.

It's hard to view Jones as anything but a bust at this moment. The negatives outweigh the positives of his game by a long shot. The fact that the Patriots will likely use the No. 3 pick on a quarterback further seals his fate.