The very, very early reviews are in and Mac Jones received two thumbs up from teammates Jakobi Meyers and Mike Onwenu Tuesday.
The Patriots rookie quarterback participated in his second straight day of organized team activities in Foxborough and he “fits the team,” in the words of Onwenu.
“The couple of days we’ve had together, he’s definitely been easy to work with,” Meyers said of Jones, the former Alabama star the Patriots selected with the 15th overall pick in the draft last month. “He probably won’t run past everybody, so throwing a catchable ball is definitely something that’s gotten him to where he is. And he’s blessed to have the arm talent that he has.’'
Onwenu noticed an immediate chemistry.
“I mean, I think he looks good all around,” he said. “I think he fits the personnel and fits the team.” Meyers, who led the Patriots in receptions (59) and receiving yards (729) in 2020, said he’s enjoyed seeing the competitive dynamic that Patriots have with four quarterbacks on the roster: Jones, Cam Newton, Jarrett Stidham, and Brian Hoyer.
“The whole room, I think, it’s nice to go out there and compete,” Meyers said. “Everyone brings their own different aspect to the game — Mac, Cam, Stid, Hoy. I feel like it is a great group of quarterbacks. They all work well with each other. They bring a lot of energy each in their own way. I am enjoying Mac and I am enjoying the rest of the guys.’'
Meyers, who built a nice rapport with Newton last season, was asked if he’s seen any noticeable differences in Newton’s game. The former college quarterback, who threw a pair of touchdowns last season, wasn’t about to give a scouting report.
“I know he does look good right now,” Meyers said. “Like I said, all the guys definitely have been putting in a lot of work and it’s exciting to see what is coming forward.”
Onwenu remains versatile
Onwenu, who played four spots along the offensive line during his rookie season — jumbo tight end, left guard, right guard, and right tackle, where he started the final 11 games — is still practicing at multiple spots as the club figures out where he is best suited.
The Patriots appear set at tackle with Isaiah Wynn and Trent Brown. There is an opening at left guard, which was held by Joe Thuney the last half-dozen seasons, and it’s likely Onwenu is high on the replacement list.
“Everyone is taught the same thing,” Onwenu said about the offensive line group. “Essentially in the job as a whole, it’s next man up. So, anyone and everyone has to be ready for the next man up. I think that’s just the way the job goes.”
He said it was “only right” that he prepared for OTAs by working on the techniques and fundamentals of both positions, so he was ready to battle when the time came.
“I’ve been repping both [guard and tackle], repping every position throughout our drills and individuals,” Onwenu said. “We’ll see how it is when it happens. But, I mean, [playing both is] a possibility.’'
Onwenu added that it matters little to him where he is slotted.
“I do not have a preference,” he said. “Wherever I’m needed, that’s where I’m at.”
It’s early in the process but Onwenu has enjoyed the spring on-field work, which had to be held virtually last season because of pandemic protocols.
“The practices have been good. Everyone is getting back in synch, working together,” he said. “It’s been a while since everyone has been together; it definitely feels good to be back out there in helmets, working with my unit.”
Tribute to Edelman
Meyers, who played a lot of slot snaps after Julian Edelman was injured last year, paid tribute to the now retired receiver. “You could watch Jules and he could never say a word but you will learn a books worth of information. So, having him around, it definitely helped my game tremendously and I’m just excited that I had the opportunity to be with him in the locker room these two years.” … Onwenu, who faced Alabama defensive tackle Christian Barmore, the Patriots second-round pick, when the two were in college, called him “a powerful player.” …. Media will get a chance to attend the club’s OTA session Thursday … The Patriots Hall of Fame will again host its annual “Field Day with Dad” event July 11. Attendees will get an opportunity to have their picture taken with the Super Bowl LIII trophy. For ticket and other information, visit patriotshalloffame.com.