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Aug 12, 2021; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New England Patriots outside linebacker Matt Judon (9) at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports

There hasn’t been a consensus explanation for what happened to the Patriots – specifically the team’s defense – at the end of the 2021 season. Asking the question 10 times may result in 10 different answers.

Most of those answers have come from those outside the team, but on Wednesday the question was posed to somebody who was in the huddle. Linebacker Matthew Judon joined Felger & Mazz on Radio Row at the Super Bowl in Los Angeles, and was asked about what changed during the 1-4 finish to the season.

“I don’t know, honestly. We kind of just played some good teams and we weren’t playing our best ball, and you can’t do that at the end of the season,” Judon said. There’s really no excuses. I wish I could be like ‘well, this person got hurt’ but it wasn’t that. It was just, we weren’t playing good football.”

One thing Judon did focus in on is that after a slow start coming out of the bye week, defensive players may have been trying to do too much, weakening the unit as a whole. “I think, after like two games, then everybody tried to start making a play like ‘I’m going to be the player to this, I’m going to be the player to do that’ instead of just playing within the defensive scheme and stuff like that,” he explained. “And I kind of think that’s kind of what happened.”

Judon also talked about quarterback Mac Jones, who drew plenty of attention at the Pro Bowl on Sunday. “Mac is a very cool dude, and he’s a great leader. Very intelligent of the game and where the ball needs to go. Everything like that,” Judon said. “I love Mac as a quarterback and as a person – who he is. And I think he’s gonna be great for New England, he’s gonna be great for our offense.” He also called Jones a “baller” and added “I think he’s gonna be just a great player, individually.”

You can hear the full interview with Matthew Judon below.

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Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at abarth@985TheSportsHub.com.