Once a troublesome defender whose play was filled with poor decisions, Adam Jones is quickly establishing himself as a dynamic player on a young Cincinnati Bengals team.
I remember repeatedly becoming angry at the television at blown coverages by Jones just last year. I would spend Sunday afternoon exclusively with my dad, following the Bengals broadcast. And I can’t tell you how many times my dad turned to me, and said:
“I want ‘Pacman’ off the team.”
To tell the truth, I agreed with him. I viewed “Pacman” as an unstable player. If you’ve ever played a college NCAA football game, you know that you have the option to select conservative, balance or aggressive. Whenever I saw Jones play, I saw aggressive. And it was hurting the team.
He would go for the big chest tackle; the hard hit. He would attempt to jar the ball loose at times, and more often than not, the opposing receiver slipped the tackle, or almost did.
On punt returns too, I would be scared to the core whenever Jones entered the field. The occasional explosive play wasn’t worth the constant mistakes I saw in his play. And as he put his hands around the football, I would automatically hold my breath, waiting for something bad to happen.
Now I see him take those same punts, and I’m still holding my breath.
This time, I’m waiting for something spectacular.