Patriots rumors: Expert predicts Bill Belichick trade, Mac Jones frustrating everyone, failed star benched

  • Patriots keep J.C. Jackson home ahead of Germany game
  • Mac Jones continues to frustrate those around Patriots organization
  • Trade could be natural conclusion to Bill Belichick's New England career

Bill Belichick, New England Patriots
Bill Belichick, New England Patriots / Candice Ward-USA TODAY Sports
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Patriots Rumors: J.C. Jackson benched (and left home) for Germany game

The New England Patriots traded for J.C. Jackson in October after the CB endured a rocky stretch with the Los Angeles Chargers. He has since appeared in five games (three starts) for the Pats in 2023, accumulating 14 tackles and three pass deflections.

It's safe to say Jackson has not performed up to expectations. The 27-year-old, who spent the first five years of his career in New England (including a Pro Bowl appearance in 2021), signed a five-year, $82.5 million contract with the Chargers in 2022. He only managed five games due to injury last season before starting the 2023 campaign on uneven ground.

The Patriots hoped Jackson would return to Pro Bowl form in his old stomping grounds, but it hasn't come to fruition. Now, Jackson will be absent for the Patriots' matchup with the Indianapolis Colts in Frankfurt, Germany on Sunday. According to Chad Graff and Jeff Howe of The Athletic, the Patriots have "lost confidence" in Jackson. He did not make the trip.

Jack Jones, Myles Bryant, and Shaun Wade are expected to get extended reps with Jackson out of commission. The Patriots' CB room isn't particularly deep and New England's defense has been on the struggle bus for several weeks now. Bill Belichick's squad can't afford for Jackson to completely bottom out, but right now, it's clear the team has little faith in the former Pro Bowler turning his season around.

The hope will be that Jackson can get back up to speed once the team returns to domestic soil, but it's safe to assume the Patriots' defensive backfield will underwhelm from here on out.