One of our three defensive spotlights from last week's Hall of Fame game was cornerback Adam Jones. And quiet honestly, if anyone has tuned themselves out of the awesome world of the Cincinnati Bengals, they'll certainly sound like fools using Jones as one of the examples for the team's mythical cast of problem children. Hell, Jones has even gone incredibly unnoticed off the field by Bengals fans themselves. The truth is, the only time Jones' name is mentioned, is after practices in our daily reports, during a preseason game or one of several "character redemption" stories that's surfaced. That's it. Will his surprising modesty, honesty and realization of second changes last?
We hope so. While he's been in the league since 2005, he's only played three seasons and 34 games due to personal conduct violations. That, as far as we can tell for the time being, is in the past. Only a year and change older than Johnathan Joseph, Jones will turn 27 years old at the end of September. If Cincinnati signs Joseph to a long-term extension, with Adam Jones and Leon Hall signed through 2011, the Bengals quite literally could have the league's best three-man cornerback combination in the league for two seasons -- considering many label Joseph and Hall as the league's better, if not best, cornerback duo, I would say it's a safe bet.
Even though he looked far more impressive than I would have expected against the Cowboys -- he was beaten soundly on the goal line when Roy Williams ran a quick slant route that Tony Romo overthrew -- Jones keeps working hard to get better.
"I'm a lot more comfortable and I've just been working hard every day," said Jones
"It takes time to mature, it didn't happen overnight. It's been a process," Jones said. "There are no worries now, I'm just smiling and happy. It's about football. The past is the past, there's no use in bringing it up now."