‘Dirty’ Mac Jones stars in Patriots loss to Bengals under NFL review

The NFL is looking into an incident during Saturday’s game where New England quarterback Mac Jones appeared to dive at the feet of Bengals cornerback Eli Apple.

In the Patriots’ 22-18 loss to the Bengals in Week 16, Cincinnati defender Germaine Pratt picked up a New England fumble and tried to get it back into the end zone for a touchdown. Jones chased the coin, but instead of trying to tackle Pratt, he threw his body at the feet of Apple, who was chasing the coin himself. Clips circulated the internet after the game, with many – including Apple – calling the stunt dirty.

Now the league can intervene. According to Pro Football Talk, the NFL is reviewing the game for potential discipline and could have a decision on Monday or Tuesday. A suspension is not planned, but is within the realm of possibility, according to the report.

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The play in question was ultimately ruled an incomplete pass and the fumble was called off, but Jones was still criticized.

“He tripped me,” Apple told NESN.com. “I thought it was a dirty game. He’s done that before, I’ve seen it.

This isn’t the first “dirty” incident Jones has been involved in in his career. In a game last season against the Panthers, he was sacked by rusher Brian Burns and appeared to pull Burns to the ground by the ankle. In a Week 7 game against the Bears, he appeared to kick safety Jaquan Brisker in the groin while slipping.

It’s been a frustrating season for the Patriots, especially on the offensive side of football. With longtime offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels leaving the team to be the Raiders’ head coach in the offseason, Jones & Co. struggled. The Patriots are 25th in the NFL in yards per game, while the sophomore quarterback is 27th among all quarterbacks in passer ratings after scoring a Pro Bowl berth in his rookie season.

Jones was, on several occasions, seen venting his frustration to the coaching staff on the sidelines, which also rubbed others the wrong way. In the past week alone, two former Patriots legends — Julian Edelman and Vince Wilfork — ripped Jones for making “pissy faces” on the sidelines, in Edelman’s words.

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