4. Mac Jones
There’s no question that the Patriots would like to find their long-term starting quarterback this offseason. The problem is that the No. 15 pick isn’t going to be high enough to draft one of the elite prospects in this class.
That will leave New England with an interesting choice to make if Jones is still on the board when they go on the clock. He lacks the elite athletic traits other signal-callers in this class possess. Supporters of Jones as a prospect point to his outstanding accuracy as the one trait that will permit him to grow into a top-notch NFL starter.
It’s possible that the prediction could come true. The challenge with evaluating Jones’ college tape is that he was surrounded by superior talent every time he dropped back to throw. Plenty of quarterbacks could post big numbers throwing to the likes of DeVonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle.
Jones will need a highly supportive offensive ecosystem to succeed right away, but the Patriots could help mask his deficiencies with their ability to concoct innovative schemes on a weekly basis. He won’t be a transcendent talent for New England, but he could be an upgrade over what Newton gave them last season.