Marcus Jones
refer to caption
Jones in 2022
No. 25 – New England Patriots
Position:Cornerback
Return specialist
Wide receiver
Personal information
Born: (1998-10-22) October 22, 1998 (age 24)
Enterprise, Alabama, U.S.
Height:5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)
Weight:175 lb (79 kg)
Career information
High school:Enterprise
(Enterprise, Alabama)
College:
NFL Draft:2022 / Round: 3 / Pick: 85
Career history
Roster status:Active
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics as of 2022
Total tackles:39
Fumble recoveries:1
Pass deflections:7
Interceptions:2
Return yards:1,007
Total touchdowns:3
Player stats at NFL.com · PFR

Marcus Elliot Jones (born October 22, 1998) is an American football cornerback, return specialist and wide receiver for the New England Patriots of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at Troy and Houston and was drafted by the Patriots in the third round of the 2022 NFL Draft.

Early life and high school

Jones grew up in Enterprise, Alabama and attended Enterprise High School, where he played basketball and football.[1] He was named all-state as a senior after recording 27 tackles with five interceptions and 16 passes broken up on defense and returning three punts and one kickoff for touchdowns.[2]

College career

Jones began his college football career at Troy. He was named the Sun Belt Conference Freshman of the Year and second-team all-conference as a return specialist after returning 30 kickoffs for 879 yards and three touchdowns and 14 for 121 yards while also intercepting two passes on defense, one of which was returned for a touchdown.[3] As a sophomore, he was named first-team All-Sun Belt as a return specialist after returning 23 kickoffs for 584 yards and one touchdown and to the second-team as a cornerback after breaking up eight passes with one interception.[4] After his sophomore season Jones entered the transfer portal and later announced that he would be transferring to the University of Houston.[5][6]

After sitting out one season and redshirting due to NCAA transfer rules, Jones had 24 tackles, 2.0 tackles for loss and one interception on defense.[7] Jones was also named first-team All-American Athletic Conference as a return specialist after leading the nation with 337 yards on 17 punt returns with one returned for a touchdown.[8] During his redshirt senior season Jones returned a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown with 17 seconds left against 19th-ranked SMU to win the game 44–37.[9] To cap off the season he won the Paul Hornung Award, given to the nation's most versatile player,[10] and was selected to the Associated Press All-America first team as a defensive back.[11] He also won AAC Special Teams Player of the Year along with being named first-team All-AAC as a return specialist and second-team All-AAC as a cornerback.[12]

Professional career

Pre-draft measurables
Height Weight Arm length Hand span
5 ft 8 in
(1.73 m)
174 lb
(79 kg)
28+78 in
(0.73 m)
8+78 in
(0.23 m)
All values from NFL Combine[13][14]

Jones was selected by the New England Patriots in the third round (85th overall) of the 2022 NFL Draft.[15] In Week 11 against the New York Jets, Jones returned a game-winning punt return touchdown for 84 yards with just 5 seconds remaining in the 10–3 win.[16] Jones' touchdown was the first punt return touchdown of the entire 2022 season.[17][18] In the Patriots' Week 13 game against the Buffalo Bills on Thursday Night Football, Jones scored his first career offensive touchdown on a 48-yard catch-and-run reception, on the first offensive snap of his career. It was the first receiving touchdown from scrimmage by a defensive back since the Jets' Marcus Coleman in 2000, also against the Bills.[19] In the Patriots' Christmas Eve game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Jones scored on a 69-yard pick six, making him the first player in 45 years to score a touchdown on offense, defense, and special teams in the same season.[20]

Jones finished his rookie season with 39 tackles, seven passes defended, and two interceptions on defense and four receptions for 78 yards and one touchdown on offense. He led the NFL with 362 punt return yards and 12.5 yards per punt return with one punt returned for a touchdown while finishing fifth in the league with 645 kick return yards. Jones was named first team All-Pro as a punt returner by the Associated Press.[21]

NFL career statistics

Legend
Led the league
Regular season
General Defense Offense Special teams
Year Team Games Tackles Interceptions Fumbles Receiving Kick returns Punt returns
GP GS Cmb Solo Ast Sck PD Int Yds Lng TD FF FR Yds TD Rec Yds TD Ret Yds TD Ret Yds TD
2022 NE 15 4 39 34 5 0.0 7 2 87 69 1 0 1 0 0 4 78 1 27 645 0 29 362 1
Career 15 4 39 34 5 0.0 7 2 87 69 1 0 1 0 0 4 78 1 27 645 0 29 362 1

References

  1. ^ "EHS star player steps away from basketball court to focus on football". Dothan Eagle. January 5, 2017. Retrieved October 31, 2021.
  2. ^ Mundee, David (January 30, 2017). "Enterprise star Marcus Jones commits to Troy, other locals set to sign". Dothan Eagle. Retrieved October 31, 2021.
  3. ^ Kennedy, Jahmal (December 11, 2017). "Troy's Jones earns ESPN Freshman All-American honors". WSFA.com. Retrieved October 31, 2021.
  4. ^ "Former Enterprise, Troy star Marcus Jones announces transfer to University of Houston". Dothan Eagle. March 30, 2019. Retrieved October 31, 2021.
  5. ^ Zenitz, Matt (March 5, 2019). "Troy star enters NCAA transfer portal". AL.com. Retrieved October 31, 2021.
  6. ^ "Ex-Troy All-American cornerback Marcus Jones transfers to Houston". Houston Chronicle. April 3, 2019. Retrieved October 31, 2021.
  7. ^ "UH's Marcus Jones on Bednarik Award watch list". Houston Chronicle. July 19, 2021. Retrieved October 31, 2021.
  8. ^ "Texas Tech football vs. Houston: How They Match Up". Lubbock Avalanche-Journal. September 3, 2021. Retrieved October 31, 2021.
  9. ^ "Houston hands No. 19 SMU first loss on Marcus Jones' 100-yard kickoff return". The Athletic. October 31, 2021. Retrieved October 31, 2021.
  10. ^ "Houston's Marcus Jones named Paul Hornung Award winner". Houston Chronicle. December 8, 2021. Retrieved December 8, 2021.
  11. ^ AP All-America team: Young and Tide lead with 3 1st teamers by Ralph D. Russo. AP News, 13 Dec 2021. Retrieved 2021-12-13.
  12. ^ "American Announces 2021 Football Award Winners and All-Conference Teams". theamerican.org. December 1, 2021. Retrieved December 8, 2021.
  13. ^ "Marcus Jones Draft and Combine Prospect Profile". NFL.com. Retrieved October 3, 2022.
  14. ^ "2022 Draft Scout Marcus Jones, Houston NFL Draft Scout College Football Profile". draftscout.com. Retrieved October 3, 2022.
  15. ^ "New Patriots DB Marcus Jones: 'Controlling the Controllables'". si.com. April 30, 2022. Retrieved May 1, 2022.
  16. ^ "Marcus Jones' punt return TD with 5 seconds left lifts Patriots over Jets". USA TODAY. Retrieved 2022-11-21.
  17. ^ "NFL Twitter erupts after Marcus Jones' game-winning TD". RSN. Retrieved 2022-11-21.
  18. ^ "Rookie CB Marcus Jones goes 'the distance,' returns punt for Patriots' 14th straight win over Jets". NFL.com. Retrieved 21 November 2022.
  19. ^ "Marcus Jones scores scintillating 48-yard TD for Patriots against Bills". ESPN.com. 2022-12-02. Retrieved 2022-12-02.
  20. ^ "Patriots' Marcus Jones intercepts Joe Burrow for 69-yard pick-six". ESPN.com. 2022-12-24. Retrieved 2022-12-24.
  21. ^ "Patriots land one player on 2022 AP All-Pro teams, rookie Marcus Jones". Boston Herald. January 13, 2023. Retrieved January 17, 2023.