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HomeSportsRetaining Patriots' Mac Jones: An early thought at rookie C/G Jake Andrews

Retaining Patriots’ Mac Jones: An early thought at rookie C/G Jake Andrews

  • Mike Reiss, ESPN Staff CreatorJul 23, 2023, 06:00 AM ET


      Mike Reiss is an NFL reporter at ESPN and covers the Uncommon England Patriots. Reiss has coated the Patriots since 1997 and joined ESPN in 2009. In 2019, he flip into named Massachusetts Sportswriter of the Yr by the Nationwide Sports activities actions Media Affiliation. It is seemingly you may possibly seemingly put collectively Reiss on Twitter at @MikeReiss.

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Hasty-hit methods and notes all through the Uncommon England Patriots and NFL:

Onwenu insurance coverage protection: In a supreme soccer world, each participant would file to practising camp with a dapper invoice of successfully being and be on the enviornment for the primary apply to maximise the restricted time main as much as the frequent season.

It seldom occurs, and for the Patriots, initiating ideally suited guard Mike Onwenu’s offseason ankle surgical therapy and opening practising camp on the bodily unable to fabricate guidelines is one occasion of how a “subsequent man up” enterprise can attain at teams fast.

Onwenu is one among the Patriots’ easiest gamers, a key cog in serving to maintain quarterback Mac Jones ideally suited. He performed all however six snaps closing season and ranked as an “honorable point out” choose in ESPN’s offseason high-10 ballot of executives, coaches, scouts and gamers.

The Patriots will wait and see with the 6-foot-3, 350-pound Onwenu, and till he’s cleared for apply after missing all on-enviornment work this spring, they’ll salvage an early thought at what they comprise acquired for insurance coverage protection — a crew together with the primary offensive lineman they chose on this yr’s draft, Troy center/guard Jake Andrews.

“He’s a battler, a aggressive dude, a blue-collar man. I deem it’s a supreme match,” Troy head coach Jon Sumrall knowledgeable “Everytime you grunt a ‘Uncommon England Patriot roughly man,’ Jake Andrews is not merely a ‘Yeah,’ he’s a ‘Hell yeah!’”

The Patriots chosen Andrews with the fifth choose of the fourth spherical, No. 107 complete. The timing of the likelihood, together with the team-constructing strategy boring it, is major.

The fourth spherical kicks off the third day of the draft, which plot each crew resets its board at that degree. The in a single day spoil, coupled with teams not attempting ahead to gamers to peaceful be out there, explains why there had been three straight trades initially of the Spherical 4 (Saints, Raiders and Eagles all moved up).

The Patriots moreover could maybe even comprise traded out however as an totally different noticed elevated payment in securing Andrews, who began at ideally suited guard in 2020 and 2021 sooner than spirited to center as a senior in 2022. Sumrall understood why.

“He’s made up of the good stuff and has the good roughly wiring, in case you occur to will,” he acknowledged. “Terribly difficult. Proper. A orderly teammate. Loves the sport and the information of what goes into being a immense O-lineman. It’s loads of stress-free as a soccer coach to teach a Jake Andrews-kind man.”

The possibility moreover sparked a stretch all through which the Patriots outdated two of their subsequent three picks on offensive linemen: Jap Michigan type out/guard Sidy Sow (Spherical 4, No. 117) and UCLA guard Atonio Mafi (Spherical 5, No. 144). The strategy flip into obtrusive: Fabricate upside depth up entrance for when inevitable accidents hit.

Andrews, a local of Millbrook, Alabama, flip right into a say championship wrestler in excessive faculty — a an similar background to frequent Patriots initiating guard Stephen Neal (2001-10). Sumrall acknowledged that reveals up in Andrews’ play, significantly with hand-to-hand wrestle.

He flip into moreover coached by frequent Patriots assistant Cole Popovich closing season at Troy.

“Cole flip into a big section of what we did and the way we did it,” Sumrall acknowledged. “The style he taught the type of O-line play; instructing development and selflessness flip into loads of Patriots stuff.

“Our safety system that we ran has loads of derivatives and underlying themes from the Patriots’ system. I deem that served our gamers extraordinarily successfully, to be taught an NFL play mannequin from a strategy and schematic standpoint.”

2. Scar on Klemm: Dante Scarnecchia flip into the Patriots’ offensive line coach when Adrian Klemm performed for the crew (2000-2004). Now Klemm returns to the group as offensive line coach – a extreme lease alongside offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien — and Scarnecchia likes the match. “Adrian is an awfully ideally suited coach,” he acknowledged. “I flip into undoubtedly impressed with the style he performed his practices [in college], the calls for he put him on the gamers. No-nonsense man. I deem he’ll make a immense job proper right here.”

3. D-Hop put together-up: My best takeaway from receiver DeAndre Hopkins agreeing to affix the Titans as an totally different of the Patriots is that the “what ifs” had been the deciding ingredient for each side. For Hopkins, too noteworthy of the Patriots’ supply flip into tied to incentives. And for the Patriots, the “what if” of how Hopkins would match into their program — and what it could maybe really possibly thought love if these incentives weren’t shut to being reached — contributed to their further cautious strategy.

4. Conditioning check out: When Patriots veterans file for practising camp Tuesday, they’ll be put by a conditioning check out, which frequent Uncommon England working assist James White detailed all through a co-host look on Sirius XM NFL Radio closing week. White outlined that gamers should full 20 sprints of 60 yards each, with a transient spoil of only a few minutes within the center.

“The climate can association it further advanced — if it’s scorching,” he acknowledged on the “Opening Drive” program with co-host Solomon Wilcots. “You comprise gotten Coach Belichick , your complete scouts , and that’s the leap supply to camp. I do know the feeling {that a} majority of those guys are going by. Some guys are doubtlessly questioning whether or not they’ve carried out adequate the closing 5 weeks. Some guys can also merely comprise carried out too noteworthy.”

The projected forecast Tuesday requires a excessive of 88 levels.

5. Bourne’s bounceback? Seven-year extinct receiver Kendrick Bourne flip into extreme of himself for his 2022 effectivity (35 catches, 434 yards, 1 TD) after a productive 2021 season with the Patriots (55 catches, 800 yards, 5 TDs). His onerous work this offseason has made an impression, with one member of the crew relaying he had a “immense spring.”

6. RB depth: The Patriots’ workouts with working backs Leonard Fournette and Darrell Henderson Jr. closing Wednesday insist a combination of due diligence and acknowledgement that they haven’t stuffed the void from James Robinson’s launch in June. No signing flip into approaching then, however the perimeters can also steadily revisit in some unspecified time sooner or later.

7. Man’s function: One leftover merchandise of trade from the spring to salvage to the underside of is the function of initiating defensive lineman Lawrence Man, who didn’t file to wished minicamp for what flip into believed to be contract-connected causes. Man enters his seventh season with the crew and switch right into a captain in 2020. A modest contract tweak, a similar to what the Titans did for security Kevin Byard, can be a pleasant gesture from the membership for a team-first manufacture of participant.

8. Trent’s motivation: It’s been a enterprise for the Patriots so to depend on extinct offensive type out Trent Brown, as evidenced by him not displaying up for the primary day of June’s wished minicamp. But when Brown’s current social media exercise is any indication, he’ll be locked in coming into practising camp. That may relieve reply a colossal quiz for the crew, with Riley Reiff and Calvin Anderson — every having their professionalism eminent by teammates within the spring — subsequent on the depth chart.

9. They acknowledged it: “He has your complete potential within the sphere. Expectantly he retains his head on his shoulders and makes lustrous decisions on and off the soccer enviornment. He’ll be a excessive nook on this league [and] jogs my memory of a youthful J.C. Jackson.” — James White, by job of Sirius XM NFL Radio, on Patriots Second-year cornerback Jack Jones

10. Did you notice? Over the previous 10 seasons, there had been merely two Trim Bowl winners to comprise a number one rusher with greater than 1,000 bustle yards. The closing flip into LeGarrette Blount for the Patriots in 2016.

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