Marcus Jones
No. 78
Position:Defensive end
Personal information
Born: (1973-08-15) August 15, 1973 (age 50)
Jacksonville, North Carolina, U.S.
Height:6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)
Weight:278 lb (126 kg)
Career information
High school:Jacksonville (NC) Southwest
College:North Carolina
NFL draft:1996 / Round: 1 / Pick: 22
Career history
 * Offseason and/or practice squad member only
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Games played:85
Games started:39
Fumble recoveries:4
Player stats at · PFR
Marcus Jones
Other namesThe Darkness
Big Baby
Height6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)
Weight265 lb (120 kg; 18 st 13 lb)
Reach80 in (203 cm)
Fighting out ofTampa, Florida
TeamGracie Tampa
Years active2007–2009 (MMA)
Mixed martial arts record
By knockout3
By submission1
By decision0
By knockout2
By submission0
By decision0
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Marcus Edward Jones (born August 15, 1973) is an American former mixed martial artist fighter and former professional football player who was a defensive end in the National Football League (NFL) for seven seasons. He played college football for the University of North Carolina, and was recognized as a consensus All-American. A first-round pick in the 1996 NFL draft, he played professional football for the NFL's Tampa Bay Buccaneers. After retiring from the NFL, he became a mixed martial arts fighter, and was a cast member of SpikeTV's The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights.

Early years

Jones was born in Jacksonville, North Carolina.[1] He attended Southwest Onslow High School in Jacksonville,[2] and played high school football for the Southwest Stallions. Jones accepted an athletic scholarship to attend the University of North Carolina, where he played for the North Carolina Tar Heels football team from 1992 to 1995. He set the Tar Heels' career sack record (subsequently broken by Greg Ellis), and was recognized as a consensus first-team All-American in 1995.

Professional football

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers selected in the first round (22nd overall) of the 1996 NFL draft.[3] He played for the Buccaneers from 1996 to 2002.[1] Jones played his entire active professional career with the Buccaneers, playing in 85 games, starting 39 of them, and recording 24 sacks.[4] He was released by the Buccaneers in October 2002. He was signed by the Buffalo Bills, but was placed on injured reserve and was waived after suffering a knee injury.[5]

Mixed martial arts career

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Jones trained under Rob Kahn in Gracie Tampa in Tampa, Florida. He made his professional MMA debut on October 26, 2007, in World Fighting Championships 5 with a victory over Will Mora. In his next fight, Jones took on Eduardo Boza, and defeated him via technical knockout midway through round one.

Jones took his first loss to Daniel Perez. Jones won two fights in a row after the loss before being selected to appear on the tenth season of The Ultimate Fighter.

The Ultimate Fighter

Jones was a competitor on The Ultimate Fighter which began filming on June 1, 2009 and started airing on September 16, 2009. During pre-selection training, Jones was shown to struggle with a lack of stamina which potentially led to him being one of the final picks for Team Rampage.

During the competition, Jones suffered through problems in the house, such as a slight knee injury as well as a severe case of sweating, prompting concerns about his availability for the competition. Upon recovery, Jones had his first fight against Team Rashad's Mike Wessel, winning via armbar submission in the first round, making him the only member of Team Rampage to make it past the preliminary rounds. In the quarterfinals, Jones gave Darrill Schoonover his first mixed martial arts defeat by knocking Schoonover out. Jones was defeated in a semifinal bout against Brendan Schaub by KO in the first round.

Ultimate Fighting Championships

For his official UFC debut, Jones returned for the finale to square off against Matt Mitrione, where Jones suffered another ko in the second round. After this fight, he decided to retire from MMA so he could spend more time with his family.[6]

Mixed martial arts record

Professional record breakdown
6 matches 4 wins 2 losses
By knockout 3 2
By submission 1 0
Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Loss 4–2 Matt Mitrione KO (punch) The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights Finale December 5, 2009 2 0:10 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win 4–1 John Juarez TKO (punches) XCF 1: Rumble in Racetown February 14, 2009 1 1:39 Daytona Beach, Florida, United States
Win 3–1 Mike Ottman TKO (punches) Revolution Fight Club 2 December 19, 2008 1 1:24 Miami, Florida, United States
Loss 2–1 Daniel Perez KO (punches) WFC 6: Battle in the Bay March 22, 2008 1 1:26 Tampa, Florida, United States
Win 2–0 Eduardo Boza TKO (punches) Revolution Fight Club 10: Bad Blood November 10, 2007 1 2:32 Tampa, Florida, United States
Win 1–0 Will Mora Submission (kimura) World Fighting Championships 5 October 26, 2007 1 1:02 Tampa, Florida, United States

Mixed martial arts exhibition record

Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Loss 2–1 Brendan Schaub KO (punches) The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights 1 2:11 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Semi-finals.
Win 2–0 Darrill Schoonover KO (punches) The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights 1 N/A Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Quarter-finals.
Win 1–0 Mike Wessel Submission (armbar) The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights 1 N/A Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Preliminary bout.


  1. ^ a b National Football League, Historical Players, Marcus Jones. Retrieved February 4, 2012.
  2. ^, Players, Marcus Jones Archived 2012-03-24 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved February 4, 2012.
  3. ^ "1996 NFL Draft Listing". Retrieved 2023-03-30.
  4. ^, Players, Marcus Jones. Retrieved February 4, 2012.
  5. ^ Chris Miller, "Marcus Jones moves past NFL life Archived 2011-07-10 at the Wayback Machine," (November 17, 2003). Retrieved February 4, 2012.
  6. ^ "Marcus Jones retires from MMA". Archived from the original on February 8, 2010. Retrieved March 3, 2010.