2022 was a difficult season for the New England Patriot New England Patriots and Mac Jones on and off the field.
New England failed to make the playoffs for the second time in the last three years and Jones took a step back in his second NFL season. It apparently didn’t take long for Jones to cause problems, with the Boston Herald’s Karen Guregian and Andrew Callahan reporting that comments during organized training activities didn’t sit well with those in the Patriots organization.
“Seeds of dysfunction were planted in the spring and summer, around the time Jones told the media he would teach his new quarterbacks coach, Joe Judge,” the Herald wrote, “the first of multiple comments he made that would irk higher-ups.”
The report also added that Jones’ trust in Judge was “non-existent” and one source said that the quarterback didn’t like Judge.
New England ranked 26th in the NFL in total offense and 17th in scoring. The Patriots were also 24th in rushing and 20th in passing per Pro Football Reference.
New England Patriots Quarterback Mac Jones’ Comments During OTAs
So what did Jones say exactly? The quarterback actually said he was looking forward to working with Judge prior to the 2022 season.
“He has knowledge that is very beneficial to me as a quarterback, and obviously I’m going to learn with him,” Jones said back in May. “That’s the goal, is to kind of teach each other and move along and take what he knows and then take the experiences that I have and combine them and work together as a great team. “Obviously, we have him and (backups Brian Hoyer and Bailey Zappe) so we have a great group of guys that can come together and work together in that room.”
Bill Belichick & the New England Patriots ‘Phased Out’ Joe Judge
Jones wasn’t the only member of the organization to not see eye to eye with Judge. New England’s head coach reportedly “phased out” Judge.
“Joe Judge, they later suspected, was in a long process of being phased out,” the Herald reported. “It was a stark change from training camp when Judge would command meetings and share the play-call sheet in team periods with Patricia and Belichick. Judge also coached across positions in practice, forcing other assistants to occasionally correct his talking points to players during drills.”
According to the Herald, Belichick even had verbal exchanges with Judge himself.
“As Patricia came under outside fire as the face of the offense, Judge drew increasing criticism from within,” the Herald reported. “Belichick would blast him in practice, and it wasn’t uncommon for Judge and Jones to trade profanity-laced outbursts. Jones’ trust in his position coach was effectively non-existent.”
Still Judge is expected to return to the Patriots sidelines in 2023. Jeff Howe of The Athletic reported that he will return in a “yet-to-be-determined role.”
Judge was an assistant coach in New England from 2012 to 2019. He was the special teams coordinator from 2015 to 2019 and wide receivers coach in 2019.
But Patriots fans should expect some changes on the sidelines with Bill O’Brien taking over the offense in 2023.