Just after midnight on Tuesday, seven year Bengals veteran and 10 year NFL veteran Adam Jones was arrested in downtown Cincinnati. Jones was charged with four counts: three misdemeanor charges of assault, disorderly conduct and obstructing official business, and one felony count of harassment with a bodily substance, which occurred once he was in custody.
Jones was reportedly at the Millennium Hotel when the incident occurred and he was beating on hotel room doors. When security came to check out the situation, Jones allegedly pushed and poked in the eye a hotel security employee. Things only got worse when Jones allegedly resisted arrest, and kicked and head butted police officers in the process. He then also allegedly spit on a jail nurse and jail guard. Jones had to be placed in a restraint chair due to his behavior once in custody. Jones was required to stay overnight in jail due to a judge ordering him to provide a DNA sample. The nurse who takes those samples was already gone for the day on Tuesday by the time of his court appearance. The judge also set bonds totaling $37,500 for his release. Jones is due back in court next Friday, January 13.
This is a bad look for Jones and a bad look for the Bengals’ organization. This is Jones' fourth arrest in his seven years with the Bengals and his 10th arrest in the last 12 years while in the NFL.
So, is it time for the Bengals to move on from their starting cornerback who was named to a Pro Bowl after the 2015 season and was re-signed to a three year contract extension during the 2016 offseason?
Here’s the details on Jones’ contract with the Bengals, per Spotrac:
|YEAR||AGE||BASE SALARY||SIGNING BONUS||ROSTER BONUS||WORKOUT BONUS||CAP HIT||DEAD CAP|
|2016||Contract details by year||32||$2,300,000||$666,666||$4,437,500||$200,000||$7,604,166||$8,500,000|
|2017||Contract details by year||33||$6,300,000||$666,666||$500,000||$200,000||$7,666,666||$1,333,334|
|2018||Contract details by year||34||$5,300,000||$666,668||$500,000||$200,000||$6,666,668||$666,668|
|2019||Free Agent Year||35||UDFA|
2018 includes a team option to pick up that final year of the deal.
The Cincy Jungle staff joined together to share their opinions on how the Bengals should proceed with Jones following his latest arrest.
Kyle Phelps: It's not just this arrest. It's his whole history of making bad decisions on-and off-the-field that either puts the team in a bad light or actively ruins their chances to win games. When he was contributing at a Pro Bowl level, you didn't have a choice with him - he was just too valuable to the team to part with. But, he's 33 and way past his prime at this point. This season proved he's too old to continue to contribute at a high level and he’s MUCH too old to not know better regarding his recent arrest.
So yes, free up his $7.6 million dollar cap hit (only $1.3 million of which will be lost) and open up a spot for a younger player like William Jackson III or KeiVarae Russell, who will appreciate the opportunity. If he is convicted, it is the only move that makes sense.
Jason Marcum: Cut him.
Dadio McDuck: Honestly, even if he weren't arrested, I'd say cut him. I was against re-signing him last offseason, and recently was hoping we'd cut him after a (somewhat predictable) poor 2016 campaign. It's strange that the one quality I share with Mike Brown (frugality) didn't seem to prevent the Bengals from keeping around a soon to be 33-year-old corner who directly led to our Wildcard loss. I couldn't understand why ageism prevented management from keeping Reggie Nelson and re-signing Jones. Yes, corners are more valuable, but a slight decline in athleticism also affects them greater. Who was going to offer $7 million a year for a guy like Jones anyway? So now that he's reportedly negated any sort of progress he made off-the-field during his time in Cincinnati, there's absolutely no reason to keep him around. Give the young guys more time and save money. That's just my two cents.
Scott Schulze: Darqueze Dennard doesn't seem to be panning out. The Bengals may lose Dre Kirkpatrick to free agency. The team doesn't know what they have with William Jackson III. And I'm not sure they are convinced Josh Shaw is a starter. Cutting Jones loose could really make a mess of their secondary. At this point, I’d keep him for the time being.
Anthony Cosenza: Yes. Gone. See ya. Adios. Look, I publicly defended both Jones and Vontaze Burfict after their actions at the end of the 2016 Wild Card game, but a second straight offseason with an issue? Come on.
It isn't like this is the first offseason issue, either. He's had four offseason arrests in his seven Bengals seasons, as well as another issue at a casino where he was escorted out for disorderly behavior. He's been a good player for the Bengals, but with these issues and a bit of a dip in production this year, it's time.
If the Bengals aren't going to make a statement by firing coaches, they need to send some sort of message to spur change and hope for 2017. I'm not into making huge public examples, but Jones has given the Bengals numerous P.R. black eyes. With Jackson, Shaw, Dennard and possibly Dre Kirkpatrick around, they have plenty of options.
Braden Whited: Adam Jones should absolutely be released from his contract. Without even taking his play and contract into account, the number of times his antics have shamed the Bengals’ franchise in recent years is too much. From numerous arrests, to slamming Amari Cooper’s head on the field, eventually you just have to say enough is enough. While Burfict may get most of the negative attention from the national media, Burfict is a model citizen off-the-field. Jones can't say the same. He may do great things in the community in terms of giving back, but giving away some bikes doesn't mean you're entitled to 20 second chances. When you do take his contract into account - that's a lot of extra money to be put elsewhere. That's money that more level headed, younger, and productive players like Kirkpatrick or Kevin Zeitler could be getting to retain their services.
John Sheeran: It makes all the sense in the world to cut Jones. Whether he's convicted or not, there has to be a line with how far a player can go without real consequences. If this isn't the last straw, there won't be a last straw for him. And that's just off-the-field. The fact of the matter is, his play regressed a good amount from last year, and the money they can save by cutting him now can be used to re-sign Kirkpatrick. And with his starting role vacant, the team can see if Dennard or Jackson can earn that spot. It’ll look like they had a plan for those two all along. It was an idea to relieve Jones of his duties before he made an idiot of himself again, now, it needs to be a plan of action.
Patrick Judis: There is just too much working against Jones this time around. Jones will be 34-years-old by the start of next season. He also carries a sizeable cap hit. The Bengals, who have quite a few players hitting free agency, could use the space from cutting him to sign potential free agent, most likely Kirkpatrick. The Bengals also have young corners to help fill that second cornerback spot, assuming Kirkpatrick remains. Given Jones’ history of on-the-field issues and off-the-field issues, this may be the time for a change in the defensive locker room.
Alberto Luque aka muertedeatenas: It is tough to make a decision right now. We don't know yet if Jones is guilty, even though his past doesn't help him. The Bengals have a young free agent-to be cornerback and a redshirt rookie who is very talented by all accounts. Jones is 33-years-old and those two factors combined could make it easier to move on from him. He was excellent last season, but had some rough outings in 2016 and depth at the position is not a concern. I don't know what cutting him would mean to the locker room, but if he's gone back to his troubling character of his early career, the Bengals can take advantage and regain some cap space to keep Whitworth, Zeitler and Kirkpatrick while also giving Dennard or Jackson III a chance outside.
I'd say wait until he's proven to be guilty or innocent, but if he is guilty, yes, move on from him.
Rebecca Toback: I’ve supported Jones through the Wild Card debacle, through his past arrests, through slamming Cooper’s head into the ground in Week 1 of the 2015 season. But, enough is enough. Jones can’t put himself into these situations. He says witnesses will come to his defense in this case, but does it really matter? He’s a liability on- and off-the-field. There’s simply no reason for the Bengals to continue permitting it and it sets a bad example for them to standby and allow him to make a fool of himself. I feel bad for his wife and daughters. I truly thought Jones had learned from his past mistakes, but, it appears he had me fooled. At this point, it’s in the Bengals’ best interest to get Kirkpatrick re-signed and part ways with Jones for good. If Marvin Lewis wants to continue being a father figure to Jones, he can do that during his personal time.
What do you think? Is it time for the Bengals to move on from Adam Jones?