PHOTO: Mac Jones Continues Patriots' Rookie Tradition At OTAs
By Jason Hall
May 25, 2021
ESPN's Mike Reiss tweeted a photo of Jones wearing a No. 50 jersey during Monday's drills originally shared in a slideshow on the team's official website.
But the Patriots aren't planning on giving Jones the number during the NFL season, which would still be a violation of league rules, despite other positions being allowed more leniency in number designations.
Instead, it was just Jones continuing the New England tradition of the team's first-round pick temporarily wearing No. 50 during their first session of OTAs.
Patriots post photos of today’s voluntary OTA, and this @EricJAdler shot of Mac Jones shows the top pick practicing in temporary No. 50.— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) May 25, 2021
A reminder to all rookies, from Bill Belichick, to focus on the important stuff.
Full slideshow on @PATRIOTSdotCOM: https://t.co/v4suL0wn0a pic.twitter.com/dIzNZEpCUR
The Patriots also typically give rookies selected subsequently numbers in the later 50s during OTAs. In short, the team has the rookies earn their "real" numbers during the offseason.
The NFL's new allotted jersey numbers breaks down by position as follows:
- Quarterbacks, punters and kickers: 1-19
- Defensive backs: 1-49
- Running backs, fullbacks, tight ends and wide receivers: 1-49, 80-89
- Offensive linemen: 50-79
- Defensive linemen: 50-79, 90-99
- Linebackers: 1-59, 90-99
Jones was selected No. 15 overall by the Patriots in the 2021 NFL Draft last month.
In 2020, the Jacksonville native led Alabama to a College Football National Championship and was third in the Heisman voting behind teammate DeVonta Smith and Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence during his lone season as Alabama's full-time starting quarterback.
Jones threw for 4,500 yards, 41 touchdowns and four interceptions on 311 of 402 passing -- while also recording one rushing touchdown -- while leading the Crimson Tide to a 13-0 record in 2020.
Jones also made four starts in the absence of Tua Tagovailoa following a season-ending injury in 2019.
Photo: Getty Images