The final day of the 2022 NFL draft got underway at cornerback for the New England Patriots.
New England selected Arizona State’s Jack Jones at No. 121 overall in the fourth round, where the war room entered with the rights to a trio of picks.
Here’s an initial glimpse into why the Sun Devils product went among them on Saturday afternoon.
Well-traveled former five-star recruit
Jones began his college journey at USC in 2016. The five-star athlete out of Long Beach Poly was ruled academically ineligible after his sophomore season, when he led the Trojans with four interceptions, and was charged with commercial burglary in 2018. A stint at Moorepark College followed without football before Jones made his way to Arizona State.
From there, Jones led the Sun Devils in pass deflections and picks during his first season in Tempe before being suspended for violating team rules during his second season. In 2021, he reemerged as an All-Pac-12 honorable mention with 32 tackles, one sack, three forced fumbles, three picks and nine passes defensed.
Jones appeared in a total of 52 games and made 22 starts between his stops. He will turn 25 next December.
Lacking length, but checking the coverage and agility boxes
Pro Football Focus tracked Jones for a 78.8 coverage grade last fall, when he allowed 33 catches on 50 targets for 410 yards and three touchdowns while leading Arizona State in pass deflections and picks. An invitation to the East-West Shrine Bowl as well as the NFL Scouting Combine followed.
While in Indianapolis, Jones measured 5-foot-10, 171 pounds. His 40-yard-dash time of 4.52 seconds stood in the middle of the pack among cornerbacks.
But at Jones’ pro day, the wiry corner with 30 3/4-inch arms ran the three-cone drill in 6.9 seconds and the short shuttle in 4.13 seconds. Those agility scores would have placed Jones among the position’s top performers if they held at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Patriots a steady pre-draft connection
But New England made steady contact with Jones during the pre-draft process, hosting the corner on a top-30 visit in addition meeting with him at Arizona State.
The homework led to an early call on Saturday after the Patriots previously called unanimous All-American and Paul Hornung Award winner Marcus Jones out of Houston in the third round. Both now enter a 2022 depth chart that includes veterans Jalen Mills, Jonathan Jones, Malcolm Butler and Terrance Mitchell in the starting conversation.
How would you grade the Patriots’ selection of CB Jack Jones at No. 121?
This poll is closed