The New England Patriots absorbed a double-body blow against the Baltimore Ravens. Not only did they lose the football game to fall to 1-2 for the season, but they’ve also lost their starting quarterback indefinitely.
Mac Jones was diagnosed with a high-ankle sprain Sunday, and the Patriots are awaiting further word on his status as he’s undergoing a magnetic resonance imaging exam Monday, according to league sources.
X-rays determined no structural damage. There is concern about damage to connective tissues, though.
Latest updates on Mac Jones’ injury in Week 3
“At least, Mac didn’t break anything,” a league source said. “That’s the good news. The bad news is that a high ankle sprain can take a long time to heal up from. He could be out for several games. It’s been a rough start so far. Hurts his back, not bad, and now this. He’ll come back strong. He’s a tough guy.”
Jones hopped off the field after massive Ravens veteran defensive lineman Calais Campbell (6-foot-8, 307 pounds) fell on him.
Of course, tight-lipped Patriots coach Bill Belichick kept with his personal tradition of providing no substantive update on Jones’ status.
“No update on him,” Belichick said Monday during a press conference. “We’ll go through the process and see where things are this morning. Nothing definitive at this point. Until we get more information, I’m not going to speculate wildly on what it would or wouldn’t be.”
Jones and the Patriots are off to a rough start to the season, and now things just got worse.
Jones has passed for 786 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 5 interceptions, equating to a 78.2 passer rating, down from his 92.5 rating as a rookie last season when he passed for 3,801 yards, 22 touchdowns, and 13 interceptions. He threw 3 interceptions against the Ravens.
Now, the Patriots are preparing to square off with the Green Bay Packers and Aaron Rodgers in Week 4 without Jones.
What’s next for the Patriots’ offense?
The next man up is expected to be veteran backup Brian Hoyer, according to league sources. Belichick didn’t affirm that Monday, but that’s the direction this is headed.
In previous weeks, Belichick has told reporters that Hoyer’s got a lot of experience in the offense while rookie quarterback Bailey Zappe has gotten a lot better.
That said, it’s unlikely that Belichick will turn to the former Western Kentucky and Houston Baptist standout.
The Patriots are expected to keep running the football after Rhamondre Stevenson and Damien Harris combined for 147 yards of total offense. DeVante Parker will be the go-to guy after catching five passes for 156 yards against a talented Ravens secondary.
Hoyer, 36, has plenty of experience. A former undrafted free agent, Hoyer has started for eight different teams, including the Houston Texans and hometown Cleveland Browns.
He’s a fairly accurate steady quarterback and extremely knowledgeable. He has completed 59.3 percent of his career throws for 10,631 career yards with 53 touchdowns and 35 interceptions for an 82.7 passer rating. He turns 37 next week.
What’s the confidence level like in Hoyer?
“One hundred percent,” wide receiver Nelson Agholor told reporters. “You’re talking about a guy with 10-plus years in this league.”