Patriots

Here’s why Mac Jones believes the Patriots have turned their season around

"<meta charset="utf-8">When we click on all cylinders, we can be pretty good."

Mac Jones
Mac Jones of the New England Patriots celebrates the touchdown by Rhamondre Stevenson. Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

After the Patriots started their season 2-4, Mac Jones (as well as several veterans) expressed confidence the team would turn its season around.

Roughly a month later, that confidence looks remarkably well-placed. The Patriots are now 6-4 after four consecutive wins, including a resounding 45-7 victory over a solid Browns team that was overmatched on both ends.

“Overall just a great team win, and that’s how you want to play the game of football,” Jones said afterward.

After another impressive performance — which kept the heat on the AFC-leading Bills — Jones was asked what he believes the key has been to the Patriots’ turnaround.

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His answer will surprise no one who has been following Jones’s postgame comments throughout the season.

“I think just practice,” Jones said. “Just doing the little things right. I think here we do a good job every week of preparing for what we want, and it just comes down to practice execution becoming game reality. When we practice well, we play well. When we don’t practice well, usually we don’t play as well.

“It’s pretty much that simple.”

The Patriots gave up a touchdown on the first drive and then took control of the game. Jones led an 83-yard drive for a touchdown before Kyle Dugger picked off Baker Mayfield and ran back to the 5-yard line. Rhamondre Stevenson punched in another touchdown, then Jones led a 99-yard drive on the Patriots’ next possession.

“You just have to execute the plays that are called,” Jones said. “You can’t look at where you are. You can’t look at the scoreboard. You can’t worry about external factors. You just have to focus on, ‘All right, here is what I’m supposed to do.’

“When 11 guys do it together, the product will be really good at the end of the drive.”

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Jones finished 19-for-23 as a passer, with three touchdowns and 198 passing yards. Perhaps his best pass was a tough 23-yard touchdown to Kendrick Bourne — a pinpoint delivery that Bourne ripped away from two Browns defenders.

“There were two guys there, and he just said, ‘That’s my ball’ and made the play,” Jones said, chuckling. “That’s how we want our receivers to play, and all of them do that. It’s really fun when you can throw it knowing that they are going to go attack the ball in the red zone.”

“Mac threw a tremendous ball,” Bourne added, “as he always does.”

The Patriots won’t be able to celebrate their success for long: They face the Falcons on Thursday. As Belichick noted, tomorrow is Thursday in terms of preparation.

Jones and the Patriots, however, seem to be in a happy, confident place.

“That’s what happens when you play football like that, you score a lot more points, and it becomes way more fun,” Jones said. “You’re scoring touchdowns, the defense is going out there getting stops, special team is making their plays. it’s a 3-level game.

“When we click on all cylinders, we can be pretty good.”

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