Jones: “My time with the Jets was so great”
While suffering from a 12-year playoff drought, New York Jets fans can always use a reminder of happier times. Listening to a member of the “Ground and Pound” duo reminisce is definitely a way to brighten the day.
Thomas Jones was brought over to New York from the Chicago Bears in 2007. Fresh off a Super Bowl defeat to the Colts in 2006, Jones found it difficult to adjust to a miserable 4-12 season in which Chad Pennington dealt with injuries and bottoming play, while the team’s surprising 2006 playoff run faded into oblivion.
Jones said, “We were 4-12. Pennington was injured, we had a lot of young guys, the offensive line was like musical chairs and there was not much stability. I took a beating that year, but it’s part of the position.” He still recorded 1,000 rushing yards but only 1 TD and just 3.6 yards per attempt.
A diehard Jets fan may recall the pain of watching Jones dive straight into the line at full speed on every play, only to be stopped in his tracks immediately.
2008 was more productive for Jones personally, as his yards per carry average rose to 4.5 and he made his lone career Pro Bowl while rushing for 1,312 yards and 13 TDs. However, after an 8-3 start, the Jets faltered down the stretch and failed to make the playoffs with a 9-7 finish.
Jones will delight Jets fans with his words about the team’s most fierce rival, the New England Patriots. “After that first game against New England [“Spygate” in 2007], I developed a hatred for the Patriots.”
2009 was the highlight of Jones’s career, as he rushed for 1,402 yards and 14 TDs in forming the league’s top rushing duo with rookie Shonn Greene. Rex Ryan‘s Ground & Pound philosophy led the Jets all the way to the AFC Championship Game after a pair of road playoff upsets against the Chargers and Bengals.
After the 2009 season, Jones left the Jets in free agency and played for two more seasons. He retired after rushing for over 10,000 yards in a productive 11-year career.
However, Jones isn’t done with the spotlight. He has taken up a second career as an actor, going by Thomas Q. Jones (for his middle name, Quinn) to throw people off the scent of the ex-football player.
Jones has appeared in films (“Straight Outta Compton”) and on TV (“Luke Cage”, “Bosch,” and the lead character on “Johnson” and a football-themed series “Life After”, both on Amazon Prime). He also has a production company called Major Entertainment Films.
Just as Thomas Jones fondly remembers his time with the Jets, fans of the Green & White long for the return of the glory days. Hopefully, the Jets can acquire a quarterback to lead them back to the postseason.
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