Patriots' Mac Jones Wearing Brace on Left Knee for 'Protective Reasons,' Not Injury

Blake SchusterContributor IAugust 16, 2021

New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones looks to pass during a joint practice with the Philadelphia Eagles at the Eagles NFL football training camp Monday, Aug. 16, 2021, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
AP Photo/Matt Rourke

Eagle-eyed observers of the New England Patriots no doubt noticed a change with rookie quarterback Mac Jones on Monday.

For the first time since training camp began, the Alabama product was spotted wearing a knee brace on his left leg. Yet, that's no reason to panic, according to Jones. He told reporters he doesn't have any ailments or soreness with the joint, he just wants to be extra protective as the regular season closes in.

Zack Cox @ZackCoxNESN

Mac Jones started wearing a brace on his left knee today. He said it’s just for protective reasons, not for any specific injury. <a href="https://t.co/4B3lp8SbXB">pic.twitter.com/4B3lp8SbXB</a>

“Oh no, no. I feel good,” Jones assured reporters. “Practice is practice, and they stay off the quarterback. Everything is good. I just want to make sure I keep it safe. That’s your lead leg when you plant, so you just want to keep it safe.”

Jones said he's going to test out a different brace on Tuesday as he continues to tinker with some added protection on the field. 

That's probably for the best since he may be on the sidelines too much longer. The 22-year-old made a strong impact in his preseason debut last week, completing 13-of-19 passes for 87 yards. He also took one sack for a loss of nine yards, something that may have impacted his desire to wear a brace moving forward. 

“I just wanted to try it out for protective reasons,” Jones said. “I think it’s a good idea as a quarterback just to have that on your left, front knee. So I’m going to give it a go and see how it feels. It’s pretty good."

As he continues to battle with Cam Newton for the No. 1 job in Foxborough, Jones wants to make sure head coach Bill Belichick's decision comes down to who is playing better and gives the team the best chance to win, not which quarterback is healthier. 

Wearing a brace may not stop Jones from suffering an injury—it is a contact sport, after all—but it shows he's being proactive in managing his body as he transitions to the pro game.