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Mel Kiper sees some Tom Brady in Mac Jones

Mike Florio and Charean Williams discuss who they think the Carolina Panthers' starting quarterback will be and which players will not be on their roster for the 2021 season

The 2021 quarterback class is coming into focus. Only one of them has drawn a comparison to the quarterback who started 2021 with his seventh Super Bowl win.

Via Mike Reiss of, Dean of Draftniks Mel Kiper compares Alabama quarterback Mac Jones to Tom Brady. Sort of.

“I hate to say, but he kind of has a little bit of Brady in him,” Kiper said, via Reiss. “I’m not saying he’s ever going to be Tom Brady. He wouldn’t be close, probably. But he has that competitiveness, and he’s so smart -- he picked that offense up [at the Senior Bowl] like it was nothing. Other quarterbacks were struggling with the verbiage and -- ‘boom!’ -- he was in and out of the huddle quicker than anybody I’ve ever seen.

“Then he sees the field. He’s tremendously accurate to all levels. He doesn’t have the ‘wow’ arm, like Brady didn’t either coming into the league. And like Brady, he’s not real mobile, not a runner. But biding time, slipping and sliding, he did it in the championship game. So there are some similarities there.”

Here’s one similarity that doesn’t exist. Jones is high on Kiper’s radar screen; Brady was not. Kiper has Jones going to the Panthers with the eighth overall pick in the draft.

Twenty-two years ago, Kiper had a fifth-round grade on Brady, and Kiper ranked him as the 10th quarterback in the 2000 draft class. Brady went in round six, as the seventh quarterback drafted.

If teams view Jones the way Kiper does, the team that drafted Brady won’t be able to land Jones without trading into the top 10. That would be out of character for the Patriots. With Tom Brady due to return to New England this year for a Bucs-Patriots game, the Patriots may have to step far out of character in order to have a quarterback on the roster who will have a snowball’s chance to beat Brady.