QUARTERBACK MAC JONES
November 22, 2022
Q: What are some of your memories of watching Thanksgiving football?
MJ: Yeah, I think it's a privilege to play football on Thanksgiving at whatever age. Whether you're a young guy or high school, college, NFL. Definitely have good memories watching, playing and definitely excited to be able to play on Thanksgiving.
Q: I was listening to you yesterday and I was interested in how you remembered from your recruiting trip about flipping the switch. What was it about that just made it stay with you or is it something like everything stays with you?
MJ: Yeah, I think I definitely have a good memory and stuff and that was just something that I remember related to football and something that could help me maybe in the future. I tried to learn on all those visits and all that stuff, so definitely took something away from that and think it will help us here. Flipping the switch is good when you get into that area, kind of heightened awareness and I think it will help us.
Q: What is it like to see David [Andrews] back at practice participating today after getting hurt in the last game?
MJ: Yeah, I mean I think it just shows you how tough David [Andrews] is. He wants to be able to help the team, however he can and I'm glad to have him out there. He's a great leader, great teammate, tough player, smart, dependable, everything, all of the above, so definitely love that guy and hopefully we can make it work here.
Q: What bind does it put or what conflict does it put facing Za'Darius Smith, Daniel Hunter, and Eric Kendricks?
MJ: I mean, they're elite, elite, elite pass rushers, football players. This is a great group up front and then obviously a great defense. They have great experience at each level. They do a lot of different stuff. They have a big library that they can pull from and obviously got to watch the film and see what they do and we've done that, but it's Thanksgiving football and any team can do whatever they want. We know the challenge that's ahead of us and definitely excited to play.
Q: We hear a lot when talking about offenses, 'this offense is a spread offense,' or that's 'an outside zone offense', or whatever as sort of a base. Do you think that's important to have a base of your offense or foundation? Do you guys feel like you've found that yet?
MJ: I think, like I always talk about – I think every offense does their things that they do well. You also want to be able to do everything. Definitely just want to continue to grow in that area, whether it's running, throwing, play-action, screens, RPOs, all that stuff. So you have to be able to improve the execution part. It varies from game-to-game, right? You're not going to necessarily do the same things every game. So that's kind of where we're at.
Q: What's it like having Jonnu [Smith] and Hunter [Henry] line up behind you in those full house packages?
MJ: It was a good little adjustment. They're two really some of our best players right there. So they provide, obviously, the ability to block but also to run and catch passes. So two really smart football players. Definitely great to have them on the field together. Definitely provides good stuff that we can do and then it make the defense - it's hard for them. It's a challenge for them. So definitely enjoy those guys. We'll just continue to do that.
Q: What's the biggest challenge for you on a condensed week like this?
MJ: I think everybody has their own challenges. Obviously, we just played, but really it's about just getting your mind and your body ready to play again. That's what we do, we play football. Any day of the week, we want to play. We're excited about this one. For me, it's just, like I said, get the treatment, get your body ready and then go out there, have fun, play on Thanksgiving, and enjoy it.
Q: Being a game plan type team where you adjust to the team you're playing, is it any tougher on a short week to do that? To morph into something different for the new team you're facing?
MJ: I think we have a big library of stuff that we can pull from, too. So just like every team, you kind of pick your plays that you do well and continue to do those. So it varies, like you said, week-to-week. Obviously, there's a shorter time. But we still get everything in. That's what I love about this place, it's all about the work. So we're just continuing to work here up until the whistle blows and then get ready to play.
Q: How would you describe your on-field chemistry with Tyquan Thornton right now? Was it tough for you guys kind of having your timelines messed up when you were dealing with injuries?
MJ: It's great to have him out there. I watched his college film and all that stuff. There's a lot of things that he did that I really liked. They're obviously translating to the NFL. He's done a great job. Everyone obviously knows he's fast. But he does other things really well, too. From the mental aspect, he definitely plays very well and knows where to line up, all that stuff. So he's done a great job. I'm excited to play with him, and we're going to continue to grow together.
Q: Is that unique to Tyquan? Or do you do that with other teammates too, like watch older film of them?
MJ: Yeah, I do that for everybody. I like to watch football. So whenever I can. It's good to watch football and learn about your teammates, or players that you're going against, or coaches even. You can learn stuff from their playing days. So it's pretty cool.
Q: When you're filling your Thanksgiving plate, I mean this is a hard-hitting question, what has to be on there?
MJ: I don't really care. I'm not super picky. So as long as there is food it's a good day. I'm not super picky.
Q: Have you ever played football on Thanksgiving? I know it's a thing around here like high school football plays Thanksgiving.
MJ: I think mostly my games were on Friday night after that. We obviously had practice and stuff. So that was good. Like I said, if you're playing on Thanksgiving, practicing, whatever, that whole week it's a real blessing. It's fun. You've got family, friends but you also are here with your teammates that you love and know very well. We're just excited to play together.
Q: Have you met Kirk Cousins before?
MJ: Yeah, I met him at the Pro Bowl. He's a very smart quarterback. Definitely enjoy watching him. He's a great player, smart, played a lot of football. Just does it the right way. I'm excited to watch him play again.
Q: When you were there at the Pro Bowl did they set up time for you guys to get to know each other? Or it's not really like that? How did that work?
MJ: Yeah obviously, introduced and talked as much as we could. He was a great guy it seemed liked. Obviously, like I said, his film speaks for itself. He's a great quarterback in this league. Like I said, it's going to be fun to go against him.