Mac Jones trade details: Jaguars acquire embattled QB from Patriots for late-round draft pick

The Patriots selected Mac Jones in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft hoping he would become a true successor to Tom Brady.

That vision never panned out, and Jones’ time in New England is now over. The Patriots are trading Jones to the Jaguars in exchange for a late-round pick, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

The trade represents a homecoming for Jones, who was born in Jacksonville. He is expected to back up Trevor Lawrence, who was selected No. 1 overall in the 2021 NFL Draft, 14 selections ahead of Jones.

Jones is coming off a bad season during which he completed 64.9 percent of his passes for 2,120 yards, 10 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions in 11 starts before being benched in favor of Bailey Zappe.

Jones enjoyed a solid rookie campaign in 2021, so perhaps Jaguars coach Doug Pederson believes he can develop the 25-year-old behind the scenes behind Lawrence. And the Jaguars weren’t the only team interested in Jones’ services, as four teams contacted the Patriots about him, per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

Here’s what to know about the Mac Jones trade as the NFL’s quarterback dominoes begin to fall.

QBs | RBs | WRs | Defense | Overall

Mac Jones trade details

Jaguars get:

Patriots get:

Mac Jones stats

Jones struggled during the 2022 and 2023 NFL seasons, but he enjoyed a quality rookie campaign with the Patriots. He performed well in Josh McDaniels’ offense, completing 67.6 percent of his passes for 3,801 yards, 22 touchdowns and 13 interceptions while leading New England to the postseason.

Jones made the Pro Bowl and finished second in the NFL’s Offensive Rookie of the Year voting behind Bengals star Ja’Marr Chase. However, Jones’ success with the Patriots was short-lived, as he struggled to replicate his success after offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels left the team to become the Raiders’ head coach.

Below is a look at Jones’ stats during his three NFL seasons.

Year Record Comp. % Passing yards Pass TDs INTs Rating
2021 10-7 67.6 3,801 22 13 92.5
2022 6-8 65.2 2,997 14 11 84.8
2023 2-9 64.9 2,120 10 12 77.0

Jones didn’t fit well into Matt Patricia or Bill O’Brien’s offensive systems in 2022 and 2023, which led to his Patriots departure. Now, Jones will look to prove himself in Jacksonville with his fourth offensive coordinator in as many NFL seasons.

Press Taylor will work closely with Doug Pederson to mold Jones into a quality backup and perhaps resurrect the starting potential he showcased during his rookie season.

Mac Jones contract

Jones signed a four-year rookie contract with the Patriots after he was selected 15th overall in the 2021 NFL Draft. The deal is worth $15.6 million over four years and comes with a fifth-year option in 2025.

Below is a breakdown of Jones’ contract, per

Year Base salary Bonuses Cap hit Dead cap
2021 $660,000 $2,173,882 $2,833,882 $15,586,352
2022 $1,368,471 $2,173,882 $3,542,353 $12,752,470
2023 $2,076,941 $2,173,882 $4,250,823 $9,210,117
2024 $2,785,412 $2,173,882 $4,959,294 $4,959,294
2025 $25,664,000 $0 $25,664,000 $0

Jones’ fifth-year option for 2025 is not guaranteed, and the Jaguars are unlikely to exercise it. Why? Because of both Jones’ performance and Jacksonville being due to give Lawrence a lucrative extension soon.

As such, Jones is effectively on a one-year deal in Jacksonville. But given that the Jaguars traded for him, it stands to reason that they view him as more than a one-year rental, so perhaps he could sign a short-term, backup-level extension in Jacksonville.

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