OVERVIEW

Aaron and his twin brother, Alvin, were El Paso kids that weren't highly rated, so staying around home made sense. It's worked out well for UTEP, as Alvin has led the team in tackles the past two years while Aaron amassed over 4,000 rushing yards during his career. Aaron led the Miners with 811 yards as a freshman, scoring four times, even though he missed three games due to a broken rib. Healthy throughout 2014, he earned second-team All-Conference USA honors with 1,321 yards (5.5 per) and 11 scores (also 30-293, three TDs receiving). The good luck didn't stay in his junior year, however, as he suffered a torn ligament in his left ankle in practice. Jones exploded in 2016 after that redshirt year, ranking fourth in the FBS with 1,773 rushing yards and scoring 17 times (28-233, three TDs receiving). He was a first-team All-Conference USA pick in his final year.

 

PLAYER OVERVIEW

Jones was recruited as both a running back and wide receiver out of high school and received a few FBS-level offers, but only hometown UTEP offered him and his twin brother, Alvin, making his decision easy. He saw immediate action as a true freshman and started six games, leading the team with 811 yards rushing and four scores. Jones started 12 games as a sophomore and posted a team-best 1,321 yards and 11 scores, also led the Miners with three touchdown grabs to earn Second Team All-CUSA honors. He started the first two games in 2015 before a season-ending injury forced him to redshirt. Jones returned in 2016 and started all 12 games, setting a school-record with 1,773 rushing yards and 17 touchdowns to earn First Team All-CUSA honors. He elected to skip his final season and enter the 2017 NFL Draft.

 

A three-year starter at UTEP, Jones thrived in the Miners' pro-style rush attack, making his living between the hashes and contributing as a receiver. His 147.8 rushing yards per game average in 2016 was third-best in the FBS and his 7.7 yards per carry average led all FBS backs with at least 150 carries. Jones can scoot with the play speed and coordinated lower body to string together moves and find open spaces. He doesn't have ideal run power or tempo between the tackles, leading to missed opportunities, but his quick-hitting vision and feast/famine run style are what made him so productive in college. Overall, Jones has clear flaws to his game, which might limit his NFL opportunities, but he has the athletic traits to eat away at defenses if given the chance.

STRENGTHS WEAKNESSES

STRENGTHS: Decisive runner who attacks the line of scrimmage. Presses the hole with timing and balance. Great feel for the cutback lane, showing the vision and quick feet to read his keys and escape trouble. Controlled movements with his hips and feet working in unison. Squeezes through openings with low pad level and burst. Gliding finishing speed at the second level to run away from pursuit angles - 24 carries of 20+ yards in 2016. Soft hands and natural receiving skills. Worked his tail off to return from his 2015 injury and stayed healthy in his final season. Two-year team captain. Extremely productive career and holds the UTEP record for career rushing yards (4,114) - also set school records with 17 100-yard and five 200-yard rushing performances.

 

WEAKNESSES: Slender for the position and lacks ideal body armor. Doesn't run with optimal power, limiting his yards after contact. Too easily grounded by single defenders. Often attacks before reading, lacking patience as an inside runner. Overcommits and misses developing holes> Needs to better set up his blocks and avoid running up the backs of his teammates. Limited in short-yardage. Liability in pass protection due to poor base strength and technique. Fumbled nine times over his career. Missed most of the 2015 season after surgery to repair torn ligaments in his left ankle (Sept. 2015) - also missed playing time as an underclassman due to shoulder and rib injuries. Off-field decision making will be scrutinized following his arrest for DWI (Feb. 2016).

 

--Dane Brugler (4/25/17)

Great ideas rooted in love.(R)

Original Post

H5 you’d probably be able to comment on this as well with you having the all22 access but both Jones and Williams missed a few cut backs and could have had massive yards. Tough thing for rookies in their first major game action. Again just like the defense I like were these guys could take the team later in the year. 

Aaron Jones is a very natural fit for GB offense. He's a pure shotgun RB. It's not a total surprise he looks as good as he does. I think Williams is a better pure RB. But Jones is well ahead of the curve because he's doing exactly what he did in college. Well, maybe running behind 5 guards is new. It's going to be fun watching these kids develop. 

Whitehair is highly thought of by scouts and coaches....Kenny Clark abused him on Thursday.  Fun to watch. 

Clark showed great promise last year as a rookie, he's worked his butt off and has taken a jump to another level this year. Draft and develop with a player who wants to be his best. 

 

I'll say it cuz I believe my eyes - Aaron Jones is the best RB on the team.  I thought he was the best rookie in TC and can only guess that his pass pro is what kept him back.  he's quicker and shiftier than the others, it jumps right out at ya.

What will make him more dangerous is getting him involved more in the passing game.  He was very good at that in college and has the ability.  He and MM are still working him into the offense/playbook.  I've only been able to see highlights so far but it is very exciting to see a RB in this offense that finds daylight as quickly as he does.  Some of those runs, I couldn't even see the crease until he was already through it.  Can't wait to see how he does vs. MIN D.

At the very least, Jones has shown that once Montgomery is back, he doesn't need to handle the full workload.  One thing that has been pretty obvious since Montgomery has moved to RB is that he can get knocked out of games a little bit easier than some other starting RBs in the league.   A top backup is necessary and Jones looks more than capable so far.  

Jones and Monty.  Both are needed.

It seems pretty clear to me Monty is trying to "think like a RB" instead of just ripping off runs like he was last year.  I'm sure there is a bunch of technique he is trying to implement and he will need work but the guy is a baller.  As others have stated, Jones is used to the position.  The two of them in tandem will make the run game a constant contributor.   

fightphoe93 posted:

At the very least, Jones has shown that once Montgomery is back, he doesn't need to handle the full workload.  One thing that has been pretty obvious since Montgomery has moved to RB is that he can get knocked out of games a little bit easier than some other starting RBs in the league.   A top backup is necessary and Jones looks more than capable so far.  

I'm not sure he is the back up.  We'll see!

Maybe not the right thread, but I'd like to see Mays get carries over Williams.  Williams hasn't done anything with his opportunities.   

Obviously we are talking 3rd string here at this point, but if Monty isn't ready for MIN, lets see Mays as 2nd string.

Tdog posted:

I'll say it cuz I believe my eyes - Aaron Jones is the best RB on the team.  I thought he was the best rookie in TC ...

I agree, Tdog.
I try to keep in mind that although we have seen very little of Williams, even during the pre-season, the coaches see him every day, etc. etc., and I should trust their judgement. 
But he has done next to nothing when he has played, with largely the same blocking as Jones. The OL certainly haven't been road graders, but Jones is able to find enough of a hole to make some good runs.
I think there is a lesson in there somewhere.

He's getting as many touches in the last several weeks as 88 was getting before he injured himself out of the lineup.  33 doesn't need more touches.  They just need to keep his involvement more regular throughout the game, not feast or famine.  Keep pounding him and he'll be done by Dec. and we'll be talking about Mays/Montgomery.  Kareem Hunt is getting 20 touches a game and it'll be interesting to see if Reid continues with that through 16wks. 

What do you do with 88?  move him around more like they used to occasionally do with Cobb, but more carries. 

I just don't see a ton of similarity with Monty and B. Jackson.   At his absolute best, Jackson was an assignment sure good teammate type guy who was a decent receiver out out of the backfield and solid in pass pro when he stayed in to block which was often.   Monty has shown some skills that Jackson never had, I mean there is no way in Hades Brandon Jackson was ever going to be playing WR and yet Monty has played it before and probably can again. 

Jackson was definitely better in pass pro than Monty and maybe stayed healthier than Monty, but Monty is definitely more skilled as a receiver overall.  As a RB, at times Monty showed more promise than Jackson, but he does have trouble staying healthy which has stunted development.

Pack-Man posted:

Marijuana should be legalized, and I don't care if any players use it (how could I fault them for it? ), but I don't think he should be out driving a car while stoned. I do mind that. He can afford a ride.

And given he was busted for a DUI in college (2016) and given diversion, apparently getting high or stoned before driving is no big thing to him.

I'm a fan of ending prohibition. The violence and destruction that affects many for doing what amounts to be victimless crimes is unreal. If you like to read about this stuff check out "Chasing the Scream". 

Regarding Jones - pay for a driver. It's not all that difficult to avoid this trouble. Being tolerant to those who want to partake is one thing, but keep it private and off the public roads.

In this day and age of the media looking for that instant controversy, I find it extremely interesting it has taken almost 2 months for this to become public.
Wouldn't surprise me if the local reporters F with MM over that; when did he become aware, why he wasn't disciplined by the team, etc.

LOL, GBFFL!
I would be hard on him as a juror. Not because he smoked pot, but not having a valid license is being a poor citizen. There are responsibilities in life to the community one lives in. 
Speeding @ 24 over (79 in a 55) is just....stupid. Doing it without a license is... stupider.
I might give him a pass on being stoned. I'd be much more interested to know if he was actually impaired to the point he was having trouble controlling his car before I make a judgement.
Like I'm not already...  

ChilliJon posted:

Aaron Jones is worth a 2nd round pick today. He’s worth a 1st rounder if he’s used correctly. 

Hes not Kamara. But he’s next door with a better outdoor grill. 

Aaron Jones is the biggest mistake Mike ever made after Winston Moss. 

Just imagine what Sean McVeigh or Bill Bellicheat would be doing with him. Or Sean Payton.

ChilliJon posted:

Aaron Jones is worth a 2nd round pick today. He’s worth a 1st rounder if he’s used correctly. 

Hes not Kamara. But he’s next door with a better outdoor grill. 

Aaron Jones is the biggest mistake Mike ever made after Winston Moss. 

IMO Jones is definitely worth a first round pick. I think hes a stud rb. In our weak OL plus pass happy offense he still excels. In a run heavy offense with blockers, hed go ape shit.

Curious if Kamara and Jones switched teams, what the result would be

YATittle posted:
ChilliJon posted:

Aaron Jones is worth a 2nd round pick today. He’s worth a 1st rounder if he’s used correctly. 

Hes not Kamara. But he’s next door with a better outdoor grill. 

Aaron Jones is the biggest mistake Mike ever made after Winston Moss. 

Just imagine what Sean McVeigh or Bill Bellicheat would be doing with him. Or Sean Payton.

Or Taysom Hill, imagine the spooge on the monitors.

Jones bulked up over the off season. I forget the amount, but IIRC he gained like 7-8 pounds of muscle mass in hopes he'd absorb hits and avoid injury. 

He also carried the ball 23 times and had 27 touches. I cannot fathom McStubborn ever allowing that. Im not saying Jones could handle that over 16 games, but it's still refreshing to see a HC actually willing to RTFB. 

PackerHawk posted:

The other Aaron was clearly not expecting that great of a block. Hopefully Jones has earned his trust and he won't bail out like that in the future. 

Yep - when that play happened I thought the same thing - no need to spin out like he did.  #12 clearly wasn't expecting the block that he got from Jones. 

packerboi posted:

Jones bulked up over the off season. I forget the amount, but IIRC he gained like 7-8 pounds of muscle mass in hopes he'd absorb hits and avoid injury. 

He also carried the ball 23 times and had 27 touches. I cannot fathom McStubborn ever allowing that. Im not saying Jones could handle that over 16 games, but it's still refreshing to see a HC actually willing to RTFB. 

Yeah, when I looked up at the scoreboard in the 3rd quarter and saw that he already had 18 carries I said that was like 3 games with McVince! 

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