It appears Mac Jones has taken one of his head coach’s most famous slogans to heart. The 23-year-old is taking “no days off.”
Despite being in the middle of the slowest period on the NFL calendar, the New England Patriots’ second-year quarterback is still investing time to work on his craft. And not just that: he also recruited two of his teammates to join him.
Nelson Agholor and Tre Nixon both teamed up with their quarterback for a workout in Carlsbad, CA, this week. Agholor shared videos and photos from the session on his Instagram account on Wednesday afternoon:
Mac Jones, Nelson Agholor and minicamp standout Tre Nixon met for a throwing session today in California, via Agholor’s IG. pic.twitter.com/5hWHae5GVi— Zack Cox (@ZackCoxNESN) June 29, 2022
The session is not the first of its kind this offseason, with Jones gathering his teammates for similar workouts in Massachusetts and Florida earlier this year. Now, right in the middle between mandatory minicamp and training camp, he again invited his pass-catchers to take the practice fields with him.
Jones, 23, is heading into his sophomore campaign off an impressive rookie season. The 15th overall selection in last year’s draft, he won the team’s starting gig in training camp and preseason and never looked back: starting all 18 of New England’s games in 2021, he completed 67.3 percent of his pass attempts for a combined 4,033 yards with 24 touchdowns and 15 interceptions.
Based on last year’s results, however, his chemistry with Agholor and Nixon still has room for growth.
While Nixon, a seventh-round selection in 2021, spent his rookie campaign on the practice squad and did not appear in a game, Jones and Agholor failed to build a consistent rapport. The rookie and the high-prized free agency addition connected on just 36 of 64 targets for 436 yards, two touchdowns and four interceptions.
Based on the offseason, though, the arrow seems to be pointing in the right direction for all three of them. Nixon in particular has looked good and was among the standouts during New England’s mandatory minicamp.
Jones himself recognized Nixon’s performance following the two-day camp.
“Our receiver group has done a great job this spring coming together,” the young quarterback said. “We have a really good balance between speed and route running ability and blocking defenders in the run game and all that. We have a very good group of guys and Tre came in with me, we used to drive to the facility every day together last year and take our Covid tests and then go to work. He’s a grinder.
“In the offseason he’s there with all the guys at the throwing sessions. I don’t think he missed a single one. He’s been grinding so he needs to continue doing that just like everybody else and he adds that good speed to the group. He’s a nice compliment and hopefully he’ll be able to continue to grow like everybody else and we can have a full group here where we can substitute in and out and let those guys go make the plays.”
The Patriots will open their training camp on July 27 — the first opportunity for the Jones-Nixon and Jones-Agholor connections to keep building on their offseason momentum.