Mac Jones' Week-3 Passing Chart
The cries for Mac Jones and OC Josh McDaniels to open-up the passing game a bit more didn't appear to change the Patriots passing game philosophy in week-3, until it did.
And, it may have shown why they haven't felt comfortable doing so.
When they got behind, the passing game opened-up out of necessity, and the difference between Jones' success rate within 10-yards of the line of scrimmage and his success rate on throws beyond that 10-yard marker was very obvious.
For the day Jones was 30-of-51 for 270-yards with one touchdown and 3 INT's. He was also sacked three times by the Saints.
Those stats were a low-point for Jones so far in this young season and landed him a QB rating of 50.3 for the day.
As you can see in the chart below, a lot of Jones' throws were once again within 10-yards of the line of scrimmage.
You can also see that he had much more success throwing within that 10-yard window.
He went 24-of-28 with one INT on throws within 10-yards of the line of scrimmage or behind the line of scrimmage (5).
He also went 6-of-22 with a touchdown and two INT's on throws beyond 10-yards downfield. That is a big difference in success rate between the two ranges.
You can also see that when Jones did thrown downfield it was to his left most of the time, where it appears Jacobi Myers did most of his work.
That is probably due to the Saints starting a rookie Cornerback on that side of the field.
The Patriots got themselves down early and ended-up in a situation where they felt the need to press a little bit more than usual, but it didn't workout well for them.
Jones is only coming off his third NFL game, and there is still a very big learning curve in front of him, as it is for all rookies, and perhaps that is the reason McDaniels and Belichick feel it's best for the team if they keep Jones from trying to throw downfield too often at this point of his career.
Every incomplete pass and interception has value to it. It is how young QB's learn to navigate the pitfalls of throwing into opposing defensive schemes.
Jones will have some good film to study and learn from, and that's how he will evolve as an NFL quarterback.