The New England Patriots had one down year after Tom Brady left, but now they’re back competing for the top spot in the AFC. Rookie quarterback Mac Jones has been a revelation. Jones has the seventh-best Pro Football Focus rating among quarterbacks this season.
According to the NFL betting lines from BetMGM, the Patriots are three-point underdogs against the Buffalo Bills in Week 13. Read on to find out how Jones and the Patriots might perform in this key divisional matchup.
Mac Jones Is Winning With Aggressive Play
Mac Jones has benefitted from a suffocating New England defense that allows opposing QBs to complete just 59% of their passes, but he deserves credit for leading the Patriots’ offense.
He isn’t just a game manager; he’s driving the ball downfield. Mac Jones is averaging 7.5 yards per pass. The Patriots don’t exactly have a receiving group full of household names, but Jones is making the most of what he’s got.
Buffalo Will Challenge the Rookie Quarterback
Mac Jones will face a stiff test in Week 13 in the Patriots vs. Bills game.
Buffalo is ranked first in the NFL in passing yards allowed, passing touchdowns allowed, and opponent completion percentage. The Bills force turnovers too. They have snagged 16 interceptions this year, the second-most in the league behind the Patriots. If Jones performs well against this impressive Bills defense, he will improve his chances of winning the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award.
This Will Be the Biggest Game of Mac Jones’ NFL Career
Mac Jones has never played in a Monday Night Football game, and he’s never played in front of the crazy Bills fans that await him in Buffalo. That’s a lot of pressure, but Jones did perform well in another colossal game the Patriots played in this season: the Week 4 matchup against Tom Brady and the Buccanneers.
In that game, Jones led the Patriots downfield for a late field goal that gave them the lead. Tom Brady came back to win, but Jones has proved capable of delivering in high-pressure situations. I expect him to remain calm and collected on Monday against the Bills. When Bill Belichick is on your side, it’s easy to stay calm.
Predicting Mac Jones’ Performance on Monday Night Football
The Buffalo Bills rank in the top five in nearly every pass defense statistic, but they’ve also had an easy schedule this year. When the Bills played decent quarterbacks like Carson Wentz and Ryan Tannehill, they’ve given up points. Jones has been better than both of those QBs this year.
The New England defense is good enough to frustrate the Bills. As a result, Mac Jones won’t have to do more than he can handle. I expect this to be a low-scoring game where Jones makes a couple of critical throws at pivotal moments.
This Monday Night Football game is Mac Jones’ chance to perform on the big stage in a high stakes matchup, and everything he’s done so far in his career tells me he’s ready. Sign up for an account at BetMGM’s online sports betting site and place your bets on this game and all of this season’s NFL action.