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ESPN’s Mike Reiss believes “there is potential for significant improvement in the deep passing game” for the Patriots this season. It appears Reiss bases this opinion primarily on how the deep-passing game has looked in early workouts. There’s certainly room for improvement. QB Mac Jones ranked just 26th among 31 qualifiers in deep-ball completion rate, according to ESPN Stats. He checked in above-average in on-target rate on downfield passes. In addition to more experience for the young QB and another off-season with his pass-catchers, New England added WR DeVante Parker via trade and speedy WR Tyquan Thornton in the 2nd round of the draft. Increasing his deep-ball production would be especially valuable for Jones, because he lacks rushing production and New England doesn’t figure to be a high-volume passing offense

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ESPN's Mike Reiss reports that QB Mac Jones "and most Patriots starters" aren't expected to play in tonight's preseason opener against the Giants. It would be nice to see Jones in action amid negative camp reviews, but we'll have to wait.

Patriots QB Mac Jones has struggled in training camp so far, according to Evan Lazar of the team's official website. "Jones looks out of sync and sometimes uncomfortable with what's happening around him," Lazar writes. "In passing situations with the field spread, Jones looks more like his usual self, and the glimpses we've seen of Mac's deep throws show signs of improvement. But the ball isn't coming out of his hands as quickly or decisively as in the past." We still have a month to go before Week 1, but this is a situation to monitor as the Patriots break in Matt Patricia as play caller.

ESPN's Mike Reiss notes that the Patriots offense has been inconsistent through training camp so far, featuring more "no chance" plays than usual. He opines that New England "experimenting with new things" has been partly to blame, but HC Bill Belichick (shockingly) also doesn't sound impressed. He said late in the week that the offense is "inching along" and that there are still "miles to go." Fortunately, the ADPs on nearly every member of the New England offense indicate that fantasy football drafters aren't especially excited. That means modest investment in whichever pieces interest you.

Patriots insider Jeff Howe tweeted Wednesday that the “expectation” is Matt Patricia will call plays this season. As Howe points out, Patricia has called most of the Pats’ offensive plays in camp. However, the long-time assistant — who’s generally worked on the defensive side — has never been an offensive play-caller at any level. He’ll almost certainly prove to be a downgrade on Josh McDaniels.

Patriots HC Bill Belichick likes the progress he's seen from 2nd-year QB Mac Jones this offseason. "He's made tremendous strides," Belichick said Tuesday. "He did a great job last year, but he's starting from a much, much higher point this year from where he started last year. His offseason work has been significant, and I think everyone recognizes how well he prepares and how much further along he was than a year ago. ... And we have a much better feel for what he can do, what his strengths are, and how to try to play into those. He's self-aware, too. He knows what he does well. We want to try to feature those." Jones finished just 30th among QBs in fantasy points per game last year -- largely because he averaged just 30.6 pass attempts per game. Jones posted a 67.6% completion rate and 7.3 yards per attempt, though, and ranked 11th among 31 qualifiers in Pro Football Focus' passing grades. His lack of rushing ability caps the fantasy ceiling. But if the Patriots open up the passing game in 2022, Jones could certainly jump into mid-range QB2 territory.

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