Mac Jones’ fairy-tale season has slammed into a harsh reality

Patriots quarterback Mac Jones has hit a bit of a rookie wall.

The Alabama product was romping toward the Rookie of the Year award while guiding New England back to the postseason after a one-year hiatus.

Now, he has thrown four interceptions in the past two games, both Patriots losses. That followed a critical win — the team’s seventh in a row at the time — over the Bills in which he was entrusted to throw just three passes in blizzard conditions in Buffalo.

On Sunday, Jones finished 14 of 32 for 145 yards with no touchdowns and two interceptions in a 33-21 home loss to the Bills. He was quick to call out his poor performance after the game.

“There’s no excuses, and there’s really nothing to talk about. I didn’t play great,” he said. “I can play better and I can lead a lot better. It starts with me.”

Mac Jones runs away from pressure against the Bills
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Jones finished the crucial divisional matchup with a 31.4 passer rating, his lowest of the season. The Patriots and Bills are now tied for first at 9-6.

“I think it just goes back to execution, throwing it to the right guy, regardless of the weather,” Jones said. “I’m still learning, obviously. The accuracy needs to improve.”

After the loss, center David Andrews praised his quarterback.

Mac Jones has struggles the past two games
Mac Jones has struggles the past two games
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“He’s very tough for us. He does a great job of standing in there,” Andrews said. “We just have to do better for him, and we all have to do better for each other.”

Jones had two costly turnovers the week prior in a loss to the Colts, including a red-zone interception on a pass that was intended for tight end Hunter Henry.  

Mac Jones throws a pass against the Bills
Mac Jones throws a pass against the Bills
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After the 27-17 loss to Indianapolis, Henry said it’s easy to forget that Jones is a rookie.

Earlier this month he drew comparisons to Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady after he led the Patriots to the top of the AFC East.

Jones, who grew up in Jacksonville. is hoping to regain his rhythm next Sunday against No. 1 overall pick Trevor Lawrence and the Jaguars.