The New England Patriots' quarterback situation has been the top storyline in training camp with Cam Newton and Mac Jones battling for the starting job.
Bill Belichick recently reaffirmed Newton is the team's starting QB, but he did add that naming a Week 1 starter would be a "hard decision." The Patriots head coach spoke more about what he's seen from his quarterbacks in an interview Monday with Pat Kirwan and Jim Miller on SiriusXM NFL Radio.
“Cam is very consistent," Belichick said. "What he is this year, is what he was last year and what he was in December is honestly pretty much what he was in August. He brings it every day. He’s ready to go, has good energy. He’s very professional. He’s one of our most consistent players.”
As for Jones, Belichick says the first-round rookie still has plenty of learning to do but continues to make progress each day.
“It’s a big jump from college to pro, I don’t care where you come from, who you are, what system you came from or which one you’re going into," he said. "So, more coverages, more fronts, more adjustments, more plays, more everything. And a higher level of skill, obviously. On our side of the ball and their side of the ball. Like any rookie, he’s making a lot of progress. He’s got a long way to go. He’s working through it and we’ll just take it day-by-day.”
By the sound of it, Newton's consistency is what gives him the edge over Jones to be the Patriots' Week 1 starter. While Jones likely will be No. 2 on the depth chart to begin the season, he could make it an even more difficult decision for Belichick if he continues to show improvement over the next month.
The Patriots begin their regular season Sept. 12 vs. the Miami Dolphins.