The New England Patriots did not just lose their Week 3 game to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, they also lost their quarterback to an injury.
Mac Jones stayed on the ground after tossing an interception late in the fourth quarter that sealed his team’s 37-26 defeat. The sophomore QB was rolled up on by Ravens defensive lineman Calais Campbell, and was forced to hop off the field on one leg before quickly departing for the locker room.
No additional information was available immediately after the game — there has since been a report that initial X-rays came back negative — but Jones’ injury status was still the dominant topic during postgame media availability. His teammates did not enter any speculative territory, but they still shared their thoughts on seeing the Patriots’ starting quarterback go down.
“There’s nothing that we can do,” said safety and team captain Devin McCourty. “We’ll see what it is. Especially when it happens at the end of the game, no one knows. I think a lot of people probably didn’t pay attention because of the game, but obviously key player, key part of what we do. So, have to evaluate and see what it is.”
Fellow captain Deatrich Wise Jr. and defensive lineman Matthew Judon also spoke highly of Jones during their own postgame pressers.
“Mac’s a tough player,” Wise Jr. said at the podium. “He has the resiliency that I’ve seen day-in, day-out, year-in, year-out. Obviously only his second year, but he’s a great leader for the team. He knows where he does well, he knows where he needs to improve, and I have all the faith in him that he’ll be able to bounce back coming next Monday, into the week and into the game.”
“We don’t know what happened,” added Judon. “We don’t know what’s going on. We’ll see in the upcoming days, but I’m riding with 10 no matter what. We have to play in the parking lot. We have to play at Gillette, wherever. I’m riding with him. Just keep your prayers for him and hopefully he’s okay.”
Jones’ teammates on the offensive side of the ball shared the sentiments expressed by their defensive counterparts.
“That’s not something that you want to see,” said wide receiver DeVante Parker. “Hopefully, everything’s alright with him. Just have to get it going. If anything, next man up.”
Parker was Jones’ favorite target on Sunday, catching five passes for 156 yards. Right behind him was Kendrick Bourne, catching four of the young quarterback’s throws for 58 yards. Like his teammate, Bourne was also asked his thoughts on the situation.
“Hope he’s okay. I haven’t seen him here, so I don’t really know,” he said in the locker room after the contest. “Hopefully he’s okay, but next man up.”
The next man up in New England’s quarterback room is veteran Brian Hoyer, who is in his 14th year in the league. While he has started only one game during his eight total seasons as a Patriot, his teammates did express confidence in his abilities to lead the offense if need be.
“Brian’s been here a long time,” said center David Andrews. “Have a lot of respect for how he comes in and works every day, prepares like he is going to play.”
Parker, meanwhile, praised Hoyer for his leadership and experience.
“Brian Hoyer, he’s a leader,” the first-year Patriot said. “He’s a vet, he knows defenses. He’s seen it all. He’ll just come out, if anything happens, and do what he can to help the team.”
Ideally, though, Hoyer will not have to take the field next week against the Green Bay Packers. As the Patriots players themselves said, however, more information will have to become available before any definitive decisions can and will be made about Mac Jones’ status for this upcoming game and the rest of the season.