Aaron Jones should have earned the benefit of the doubt by now. Undersized and underutilized for most of his early career, Jones blossomed into the kind of back who actually made a second contract make sense, and he’s paid off the Packers investment both on and off the field.
Now, Jones finds himself at another crossroads with the Packers. Heading into his age-30 season, Jones’ cap hit balloons this offseason. The Packers are not quite out of salary cap purgatory yet, and every cap dollar is going to count as they try to prep for another postseason run, now that their house money has been exhausted.
It’d be understandable if you said now’s the time to cut bait. Jones juiced the Packers’ late-season surge with an unprecedented hot streak. What are the odds he’s going to do that again? It’s possible, even likely, that this was as good as it’s ever going to be.
But Jones matters in more ways than just what he does with the ball in his hands. Listening to any young player talk about his impact, it seems like there’s a situation where he’s worth it to the Packers even if he’s barely playing. Sure, that might mean he’s little more than an expensive mascot in 2024, but that still seems to be valuable to this young group of players.
Maybe this is just a long way of saying it’s hard to bet against Jones, but boy is it hard to bet against Jones. If there are cap savings to be had, maybe reworking his deal could be a net benefit to everyone.
The short answer is yes. If they want Jones around for 2024, they’re probably going to have to do some work on his contract.
Having Jones back would be nice, but the Packers’ young core is going to be around for quite a while.
Welch had a quiet year on the field, but it was still quite a year for the young man from Iola, Wisconsin.
Savor it, Lions fans. Now you know the disappointment that comes with expectations.
I won’t spoil it, but the pairing of names between this alligator and her brother is pretty cool.