Alabama quarterback Mac Jones, a junior, has decided a season in which he scorched defenses across the SEC landscape, was a finalist for the Heisman Trophy and led his Crimson Tide offense to a blowout 52-24 victory in the national championship game is enough college football for him, and has decided to turn pro.

ESPN broke the news on Jones’s decision Thursday afternoon, three days after the Tide’s national title victory over Ohio State at Hard Rock Stadium outside Miami. In that game, the season’s biggest, Jones completed 36-0f-45 passes for 464 yards and five touchdowns, which remarkably enough, was about on par with his production throughout the 2020 campaign. 

Professional scouts seem to agree that Jones is a good but not great NFL prospect. While he completed more than 77 percent of his throws last season, a superlative number, more than 34 percent of them were to receivers at or behind the line of scrimmage, a scenario he will encounter infrequently in the professional game.

In addition to the many short completions, Jones was surrounded always by superstar wideouts who consistently racked up massive yards after the catch to accompany many long touchdown runs. Despite those evaluation points, Jones still is expected to be a high pick in the 2021 draft.

Jones leaves the college game both a star performer and one of the game’s great winners. Over a little less than two seasons of action, Jones threw for 6,126 yards and 56 touchdowns against only seven interceptions. In his final year he led his team to a perfect 13-0 record and a blowout victory in the national championship game. Now he’s decided it’s time to take his talents to the National Football League.