Packers smart to bring back James Jones
(Note: This article has been updated to reflect the news that the Packers have signed WR James Jones.)
Former Green Bay Packers wide receiver James Jones was released by the Giants Saturday, and with Jordy Nelson out for the season and Randall Cobb banged up (although Cobb isn’t expected to miss any games), the Packers decided to bring back the sure-handed Jones. He not only knows the system, but also has years of experience working with QB Aaron Rodgers; he brought in 310 receptions for 4,305 yards and 37 touchdowns over his seven years with the Packers. Jones was also regularly one of the most sure-handed receivers in the league, ranking ninth in 2013 with just a 3.28 drop rate, and 12th in 2012 with a 4.48 rate.
Jones left the Packers after the 2013 season but failed to gain traction with a rebuilding Raiders squad. Last season with the Raiders, Jones caught 73 receptions, but for only 666 yards and 6 touchdowns. Jones struggled with being a No. 1 option, while also trying to build chemistry with a rookie quarterback in Derek Carr.
Jones can slide back in as the team’s third or fourth option and take some of the pressure off of rookie Ty Montgomery and second-year WR Jeff Janis, both of whom are still developing. The Packers don’t normally delve into free agency and prefer to develop younger players, but with the Nelson injury and given Jones’ Packer history, Jones was a good match.