'Trade Your Owner' If Mac Jones Is the Next Tom Brady, Says NFL Scout

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMarch 10, 2021

Alabama quarterback Mac Jones watches during warm ups before an NCAA College Football Playoff national championship game against Ohio State, Monday, Jan. 11, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
Chris O'Meara/Associated Press

An NFL scout isn't buying the comparisons between Alabama's Mac Jones, one of the top quarterback prospects in the 2021 NFL draft, and future Hall of Famer Tom Brady, who captured his seventh Super Bowl title last month in his first year with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. 

The source told Bob McGinn of The Athletic it's easy to throw Brady's name out there based on raw tools but noted there would be a mad dash to the top of the draft order if teams felt he could replicate the longtime New England Patriots superstar's success.

"How can anyone compare him to Brady? I wouldn't compare anybody to Tom Brady. Ever," the scout said. "How many guys with similar tools failed? If this guy's the next Brady, trade your next seven first-round picks. Give up your head coach. Trade your owner."

Jones appears to have the widest range of potential landing spots among the 2021 class' five standout quarterbacks, a group that also includes Clemson's Trevor Lawrence, BYU's Zach Wilson, Ohio State's Justin Fields and North Dakota State's Trey Lance.

That's mostly because there isn't a consensus about the Alabama star's trajectory at the next level.

His numbers with the Crimson Tide were terrific. He completed 74.3 percent of his throws for 6,126 yards with 56 touchdowns and just seven interceptions in 30 games across three years. He also led Bama to the national championship in his final college campaign.

The 22-year-old Davey O'Brien Award winner was surrounded by a number of offensive playmakers and supported by a defense filled with numerous future NFL starters, so the question is whether he's an annual Pro Bowl talent or just a solid signal-caller helped by ideal surroundings.

One scout told McGinn that Jones could become the "steal of the bunch" but others weren't convinced.

"When I watched him, I said this was A.J. McCarron all over again," a separate scout said. "The offense. The players around him. He's got a slow delivery. He labors in his movements. If he's in rhythm and everything is working for him, he's a machine. I just question everything about his natural talent, his playmaking, his ability to face pressure and make plays."

Another, after seeing Jones as the Senior Bowl, added: "He stood out in a bad way. He didn't look very strong. He didn't look very athletic. He just didn't look like a starter you want in the NFL."

Ultimately, it's hard to ignore a title-winning season with 41 touchdowns and just four picks, and it only takes one team falling in love with Jones' skill set to see him coming off the board inside the top 10.

Trying to predict exactly what type of player he'll be in the NFL is a tricky task, however, but reaching Brady-level success is an extreme long shot for any quarterback in this year's, or any year's, class.