Patriots Make Embarrassing Administrative Blunder

Getty JC Jackson

Like every other team in the NFL, the New England Patriots are required to place their most-deserving players on a Pro-Bowl ballot. Unfortunately, mistakes were made.

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JC Jackson Was Left Off the Patriots’ Pro-Bowl Ballot

Getty    No. 27 – New England Patriots
Position:
Cornerback
Personal information
Born:
November 17, 1995 (age 25)
Immokalee, Florida
Height:
5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Weight:
198 lb (90 kg)
Career information
High school:
Immokalee
(Immokalee, Florida)
College:
Maryland
Undrafted:
2018
Career history
New England Patriots (2018–present)
Roster status:
Active
Career highlights and awards
Super Bowl champion (LIII)
Career NFL statistics as of Week 10, 2020
Total tackles:
79
Forced fumbles:
0
Fumble recoveries:
3
Pass deflections:
27
Interceptions:
14

The NFL Pro Bowl is going virtual this season because of the pandemic. Truthfully, it might be the only thing COVID-19 will have taken away from us that no one will miss. In any case, the NFL and EA have a deal in place to in part, simulate a portion of the league’s all-star contest within Madden 21 on next-generation consoles.

That sounds a little intriguing, but here’s where things get a bit sticky. The Patriots were supposed to submit Pro Bowl candidates from their team on a ballot. Somehow, they left off cornerback JC Jackson, who just happens to be leading the NFL in interceptions, and he has a pick in each of his last five games. That’s a Patriots record. So naturally, many wondered aloud on social media how Jackson could be left off the ballot by his own team.


Thankfully, the Patriots Corrected the Issue

It appears the NFL stepped in and influenced the Patriots to add Jackson to the ballot.

Here is an official statement from the Patriots explaining Jackson’s omission from the ballot.

“We listed the two cornerbacks who have started the most games at cornerback and who have the longest tenure, Jason McCourty (9 starts) and Stephon Gilmore (6 starts),” a Patriots team spokesperson told The Patriots Wire’s Henry McKenna. “If we could list a third CB, we would have listed JC Jackson (4 starts) or Jonathan Jones (6 starts), but you (are) asked to list the 11 defensive starters.”


There Was Talk the Team Was Conspiring Against Jackson

There are often contract incentives attached to making a Pro Bowl team, and Jackson is having an outstanding year in a season that is his last with the Patriots before becoming a restricted free agent. There was some sentiment suggesting the Patriots were purposely keeping him off the ballot to escape paying a bonus, or to keep his value down ahead of serious contract discussion.

We don’t know for sure, but it seems unlikely the Patriots would stoop to such a depth that it would blatantly try to sabotage one of its players. The potential backlash for such an offense could create a very undesirable ripple effect. I’m giving the Patriots the benefit of the doubt on this one, but it’s still pretty embarrassing.


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