Matt Jones - The Heel

The Matt Jones situation is getting even more confusing.

Even the fact that coach Jack Del Rio suggested publicly Monday that he's not happy with Jones' body language didn't appear to rile him up when he met with reporters Wednesday. He had his usual casual demeanor as he patiently answered all the questions.

"That's fine," Jones said about Del Rio's comments that he first made to him in a private meeting in the last week.

"If that's what he wants to do, that's how things go. That's not going to hurt my feelings or something like that," Jones said.

When Jones, who was blanked in the opener against Tennessee and had three catches against the Falcons Sunday, was asked if was going to be active for Sunday's game at Denver, he said he didn't know.

But what was surprising is that neither Jones nor Del Rio revealed before practice that Jones would miss practice with a heel injury.

Since the team's doesn't have to list a player's status until Friday under the new injury policy, it's uncertain if the injury could keep him out of Sunday's game.

When Del Rio was asked at his press conference before practice how he thought Jones would respond, his answer didn't mention Jones' name. He just said he expects the team to prepare for Denver.

But, heel injury or no heel injury, Del Rio may be running out of patience with Jones.

Jones, who said "a little" when he was asked if he was surprised by Del Rio's comments, also said he's not going to change his style.

"It's how I am," he said. "I'm not a guy that's jumping up and down all the time. I'm still happy for everybody else. I want to do what I can. I want to win just as much as everybody else. I'm here all summer working out."

Jones said he gives a good effort even if he sometimes appears to be jogging, especially on plays when he's not the main target.

"I try," he said. "Just because it doesn't appear to the eye, it's something that's probably been with me since high school and college. I want to win just as bad as everybody else does."

Of his body language, he said, "It's something that people perceive me that way ever since I played sports. You ask any coach I've had and they know I want to win. They know I'm out there trying as hard as I can."

Of the suggestion that he loafs when he's not the intended receiver, he said, "Certain plays you're not the receiver, but I'm definitely giving effort and definitely trying to do my job."

Jones also said he likes playing football even though he often seems indifferent to the game.

"I love the game of football," he said. "I love competing. What else would I love to be doing? There are only a couple of things that you can do like this. There are not very many jobs like this. If you're looking at body language and saying he doesn't want to compete, he doesn't want to win, then you're getting it wrong."

Jones, who was sporting a bushy beard that he called the "Beards for (Brett) Favre Club," said he likes playing in Jacksonville.

"I like the guys. I like everything about Jacksonville," he said.

But Del Rio doesn't seem to like everything about Jones' style and it remains to be seen what his role will be for the rest of the season.



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