FOXBORO (CBS) — The Patriots introduced quarterback Mac Jones at Gillette Stadium on Friday afternoon, less than 24 hours after the team drafted him with the 15th overall selection. It’s the highest that Bill Belichick has ever drafted a quarterback, so there is quite a bit of hype surrounding the 22-year-old.
Jones’ excitement from Thursday night has not subsided, and he was taken back a bit as he stood at the 50-yard line at Gillette Stadium with Patriots owner Robert Kraft and team president Jonathan Kraft. Jones had to deal with a blustery wind as he held up his Patriots jersey for all to see on Friday, but that didn’t put a damper on the day.READ MORE: Jason McCourty Signing With Dolphins
“It feels absolutely amazing. I can’t thank Kraft family enough. Being a part of this is going to be awesome,” Jones told reporters at Gillette. “There’s a lot of work to be done and I’m looking forward to meeting my new teammates, talking to coaches and getting to know the area. Really looking forward to it.”
A little windy?? 😳💨🌬
New #Patriots QB @MacJones_10 gets a taste of the weather in New England as he answers a question Friday after he was presented a Jersey by Robert and Jonathan Kraft – #Windy @wbz #wbz pic.twitter.com/fPqDytJsPO
— Dan Roche (@RochieWBZ) April 30, 2021
Jones said that he heard from a lot of his new teammates on social media after the Patriots drafted him on Thursday night, but he can’t wait to meet everyone in person. And more importantly, he can’t wait to get to work.
“Everyone said let’s go to work — it’s all about work, all about winning and all about football. That’s something I’ll always be about,” he said.READ MORE: Dates For Patriots' Rookie Minicamp, OTAs Announced
Pundits had Jones as one of the most NFL-ready quarterbacks in the draft, but he was the fifth QB taken on Thursday night. He was happy to slide to the Patriots, but he knows that nothing is given in this league — it must be earned.
He’s perfectly fine with that, too. Jones had to sit and wait his turn at Alabama, something he’s prepared for here in New England with Cam Newton and Jarrett Stidham also on the depth chart at QB.
“I have a lot of work to do. I’ve never played in the NFL and for me it’s about learning as much as I can, getting familiar with everyone, playing my role and doing what I can do,” he said. “There’s not a lot of pressure; just come in and work every day.
“It’s all about winning games and I want to help them out however I can,” he said of the quarterback room. “You can learn from people in a similar role as you. I sat behind those guys [at Alabama] and learned a lot, focused on myself in a way to get better and help the team. Now I’m here and I’m looking forward to doing the same thing.”
Jones was an absolute stud in his one year as “the guy” at Alabama, leading the team to a perfect record and a national championship. He threw for 4,500 and 41 touchdowns, completing a ridiculous 77 percent of his passes.
Now he’s looking forward to getting to work with Newton, Stidham and offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels here in New England.
“I think he is obviously a great off play-caller and tailors it to the quarterback,” Jones said of McDaniels. “He does a great job preparing everybody and I really enjoyed watching New England on tape, because they do it right. It’s very complex and I look forward to attacking it every day, asking good questions and doing what I can to get better.”
There is plenty of hype surrounding Jones, New England’s quarterback of the future. But in the present, he’s a fresh-faced rookie looking to do what he can to help the team win — even if that means taking a seat on the bench to begin his pro career.MORE NEWS: Mac Jones Apparently Copied Tom Brady While Developing Many Aspects Of His Game
“There’s nothing secret or anything about me. I’m super competitive and I want to play whatever role I play and do my best to compete,” he said. “A lot of guys here understand it’s all about the team and I’m that kind of guy.”