Jones breaks silence on his holdout
Chris Jones, the star defensive tackle of the Kansas City Chiefs, has finally spoken out about his contract situation. Jones, who is seeking a three-year deal worth $28 million per year, has been holding out from the team since the start of training camp. He has missed the entire preseason and is unlikely to play in the season opener against the Detroit Lions on Thursday night.
Jones said he still hopes to agree to a new deal with the Chiefs and indicated he could play in the opener if a deal gets done. “We can’t really talk about it,” Jones said of the contract negotiations. “Hopefully, it gets worked out. You know, it’s always been my goal to be a Kansas City Chief for life. I’ve said that multiple times on social media platforms [and] from interviews. They know where my position is at — and hopefully, we can get something worked out for the long term.”
Jones also said he has been working out twice a day in Miami and keeping in touch with his teammates. He said he chose to hold out rather than hold in so as not to be a distraction for the club. “I could have been a hold-in, but that’s even more of a distraction,” Jones said. “I’d be there holding in while the guys are there, you know what I mean? Just a bigger distraction.”
Jones not affected by Bosa’s record-breaking contract
Jones’ holdout comes at a time when another elite pass-rusher, Nick Bosa of the San Francisco 49ers, has signed a five-year, $170 million extension with $122.5 million in guarantees. Bosa’s deal makes him the highest-paid defensive player in NFL history, surpassing Aaron Donald of the Los Angeles Rams, who makes $30 million per year.
However, Jones said he is not influenced by Bosa’s contract and will not raise his asking price. According to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, Jones does not plan on increasing his request for a three-year deal that pays him $28 million annually even after the Bosa contract.
Jones said he is not letting his teammates down by holding out and compared his situation to asking for a raise at a job. “How? That’s what I’ve got to ask,” he replied. “How have I let them down? [It’s] just like when you’re at a job and you ask for an extension, right? And you ask for a raise, right? You’re not letting anyone down. Who are you letting down? For asking your boss for a raise? So when you take the personal feelings out of it, you kind of can get it: all I’m doing is asking for a raise.”
Jones’ impact on the Chiefs’ defense
Jones is arguably the best player on the Chiefs’ defense and one of the most dominant interior defensive linemen in the league. He has four Pro Bowl selections and two Super Bowl rings on his resume. He is coming off a season that saw him finish with 44 tackles, 15.5 sacks, four passes defended, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.
He also had two sacks in the Chiefs’ AFC Championship Game win over the Cincinnati Bengals. His presence on the defensive line creates pressure on opposing quarterbacks and opens up opportunities for his teammates.
The Chiefs have already handed out big contracts to quarterback Patrick Mahomes, tight end Travis Kelce and safety Tyrann Mathieu this offseason. They have also signed veteran defensive end Melvin Ingram to bolster their pass rush. However, they have not been able to reach an agreement with Jones, who is playing under his fifth-year option worth $11.8 million.
The Chiefs have until Saturday to sign Jones to a new deal or else he will become an unrestricted free agent next year. If they lose him, they will have a huge hole to fill on their defense.