With Aaron Rodgers and Jordan Love, the Green Bay Packers are set atop the depth chart at quarterback. However, with backup Tim Boyle signing with the Detroit Lions in free agency, Green Bay could use a developmental prospect.
Alabama’s Mac Jones is our No. 5-ranked quarterback.
Growing up, Mac Jones was a “perfectionist.” Ultimately, Jones was the perfect quarterback to lead Alabama to yet another national championship.
Piloting the star-studded and high-flying Alabama offense that scored a ridiculous 48.5 points per game and topped 50 points in seven of its cupcake-free 13 games, Jones put up video game-like numbers. He set an FCS record with a 77.4 percent completion rate. He set the school record with 4,500 passing yards. He led the nation in passer rating.
“Since he was a young child, he’s been kind of a perfectionist,” Gordon Jones, Mac’s father, told TideSports.com. “He hasn’t needed a lot of outside discipline, supervision, going over plays, anything like that. He’s such a student of the game, he knows when he’s done something wrong.”
Growing up in a family of athletes helped. His father was a college tennis player, his brother was a college soccer player and his sister was a college tennis player. That fueled the competitiveness. Much like Rodgers’ days as Brett Favre’s backup, Jones’ goal was to dominate the scout team as he sat behind Jalen Hurts and Tua Tagovailoa for his first couple seasons.
“I don’t care if you’re my teammates or not,” receiver DeVonta Smith remembered Jones saying as a scout-team quarterback, “I’m going to come out here and try to embarrass you every day.”
When it was Jones’ turn in 2020, he was ready. With Alabama’s overwhelming dominance – it won 12 of its 13 games by at least 15 points – and ridiculously strong perimeter group, the competition was often with himself.
Accuracy is Jones’ calling card. On throws between 1 and 9 yards, he completed 85.1 percent of his passes, according to Pro Football Focus. But, more than a dinking-and-dunking game manager, he also led the nation in deep passing yards.
Jones wasn’t just a star on the football field. He was a star in the classroom, too, with a 4.0 GPA. He got his degree in three years and spent 2020 working toward his master’s degree.
“Attention to detail is one of the most critical aspects of juggling life as a student-athlete,” Jones wrote for Medium.com. “Whether it is studying the defensive schemes of our opponents, or focusing on studying for an upcoming exam, success thrives from paying close attention to the little things. Having a rigid schedule ensures that I am where I need to be and focused on what I need to achieve at that given moment.”
A DUI arrest was a curse and a blessing for Michael McCorkle Jones.
“That was a really rough part of my life,” he told AL.com, “but I kind of needed it at the same time, and it changed my whole outlook. I felt like I let a lot of people down, including myself, and my teammates.”
Measureables: 6-foot-2 5/8, 217 pounds. 9 3/4-inch hands.
Stats and accolades: Jones was a finalist for the Heisman Trophy and the all-SEC first-team quarterback following the greatest passing season in school history. Jones was the winner of the Davey O'Brien, Johnny Unitas Golden Arm and Manning awards, and he was the consensus first-team All-American. He threw for a school-record 4,500 passing yards. In the playoffs, he decimated Notre Dame (25-of-30 for 297 yards and four touchdowns) and Ohio State (36-of-45 for 464 yards and five touchdowns).
NFL Draft Bible Says: On time and comfortable, Jones does an outstanding job staying in rhythm, excelling in short game in structure. Jones is among the most accurate quarterbacks in the 2021 NFL Draft, finding success at multiple levels of the field. He has outstanding touch, showing the ability to threaten the field vertically with notable ball placement and trajectory. While Jones excels in structure, his tools are marginal and that might affect his chance to achieve a ton of upside at the position.