Did Mac Jones play a role in Bill Belichick-Robert Kraft rift?

Larry Brown Sports

New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and team owner Robert Kraft diplomatically ended their run together this week. Quarterback Mac Jones may have played a part in their eventual separation.

ESPN’s Seth Wickersham and Wright Thompson published a lengthy story Friday summarizing the end of the Belichick era in Foxborough.

The report pointed out a few recent personnel decisions that the Krafts made “to assert themselves more in football operations” after recent losing seasons under Belichick. The final one on the list centered around Jones.

Belichick had reportedly raised the idea of trading Jones during the offseason, which the Krafts opposed. The Krafts were said to have “embraced” Jones as the potential quarterback of the future post-Brady.

The report noted that those who followed the team closely noticed a “disconnect” between Belichick and Jones during the team’s most recent training camp. The former appeared to be going “out of his way not to compliment Jones” during press conferences.

Jones showed promise in his rookie season and even made the Pro Bowl in 2021. However, his performance has dipped in each of the last two campaigns.

Jones threw for just 2,120 yards with 10 touchdowns and 12 interceptions across 11 games this season before being benched in favor of backup Bailey Zappe.

It’s unclear if Jones’ struggles were in part due to his coach reportedly being at odds with the Krafts over the QB’s status with the team. But it couldn’t have helped his on-field play in the least.

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