photo courtesy of Newsday.com
Rather than hold his block on Jones, the Bears special teamer had raced off the line of scrimmage on the previous three Chicago punts. On the Bears' fourth punt of the game, Jones, with the coaches' blessing, went for the all out blitz and struck pay dirt. Just before the half, the gates opened for Jones, who had a direct line to Spencer Lanning and blocked the punt with nothing but green ahead of him.
"The guy was just taking off," Jones said. "I went back to the sideline, I told coach, 'I think I've got a chance to go get this.' I went in there and got a hand on the ball."
He did a whole lot more than that.
With the line of scrimmage at Chicago's 47-yard line, Jones got to the punter, and the ball bounced all the way down to the 15 where he scooped it up. In the ensuing chaos, Jones fumbled at the goal line, and fellow rookie linebacker Jacquian Williams grabbed it, seemingly scoring the touchdown. However, by rule, the ball could not be advanced by anyone but Jones and was placed back at the spot of the fumble.
On the second play of the ensuing possession, David Carr hit Domenik Hixon for a five-yard touchdown. But after the game, some savvy veterans in the locker room let Jones in on a trick of the trade.
"All the older guys told me to look back at the JumboTron (while I was running with the ball)," the sixth round draft pick out of Michigan State said. "I was like, 'I don't know, man.' This was my first game here in the home stadium. I know definitely Lord-willing if I get the opportunity again, I definitely will look at the JumboTron."
Rookie or not, Jones was just surprised how free he was.
"I thought that I would have to fight and try to get there, but it was pretty quick," he said. "It happened very fast. I was just happy I got there in enough time because I didn't think the punter was going to take that long."
It was a big night for the Giants special teams and especially for Jones, who also stuffed Marion Barber on third down of a goal line stand in the third quarter.
Jones, one of the most mild-mannered personalities in the locker room, is anything but that on the field.
"I've been told that a lot, I've been told that a lot," Jones said. "It's just one of those things when you get in that arena, I can just let it all out. I can be low key now because I let everything out on the field. That's what I believe in. I feel like if you've still got something left, you didn't leave it all out on the field. I've been coached that way since high school – leave it all out and come back again."