New England Patriots cornerback Jonathan Jones has addressed rumors mentioning Baltimore Ravens star Lamar Jackson as a possible replacement for starting quarterback Mac Jones.
“We’re always in the business of getting good players,” Jonathan Jones said during an appearance on “The Crew” podcast, as shared by Dakota Randall of NESN. “That’s part of the game. You win with good players. The more good players you can have, the better your team’s gonna be. So, I don’t think we’re ever intentionally turning down good players.”
To his credit, Jonathan Jones did well to dance around the question when asked if he views Jackson, a one-time NFL Most Valuable Player, as an upgrade over Mac Jones.
“I will say this, I will say they offer different things,” Jonathan Jones explained. “Two different types of worlds. But you got one player who’s an MVP. … So, that’s not fair to compare apples to oranges, to a guy who’s going into year three (of his career) to improve, to an MVP candidate in this league.”
It’s been said throughout the spring that the Patriots are “not in on” Jackson while his rights for 2023 are secured via the non-exclusive franchise tag and while he is reportedly looking for over $230M in fully guaranteed money attached to his next NFL contract.
However, stories have continued to link the Patriots with other options at the position through this week, in part due to the alleged damaged relationship between Mac Jones and head coach Bill Belichick.
Specifically, it’s thought Belichick and others within the Patriots could push to acquire Kentucky Wildcats quarterback Will Levis if Levis falls to New England at overall draft pick No. 14 on Thursday night.
Levis’ draft stock has become a fascinating subject among insiders. Some have said the Carolina Panthers should take him with the draft’s first pick, while others have Levis sliding into the teens.
The deadline for teams to sign tagged players to long-term deals is July 17, so the Ravens don’t have to do anything regarding Jackson’s status through the draft.
If New England doesn’t spend a first-round pick on a quarterback and Jackson doesn’t sign a contract with Baltimore anytime soon, rumors about the Patriots possibly pursuing the 26-year-old may continue beyond springtime workouts.