Mike Jones, OG
(6050, 309, 5.42-5.50) Iowa
Notes: Born 6/25/85, in Chicago Ridge, Ill., where he attended H.L. Richards (Oak Lawn, Ill.) High School. Played for Gary Korhenen and graded out at 91 percent for blocking consistency as a senior, leading his team to a runner-up finish in the Illinois state championship as a junior. Parents are James Jones and Elizabeth Paplauskas. His brother, Jim, played for Notre Dame (1997-2000) and spent time mostly as a practice squadder with the Ravens, Texans, Steelers and Redskins.
College: Started the final seven games at left guard in 2003 as a true freshman and was credited with 43 knockdowns and 5 touchdown-resulting blocks. Had starts at right tackle (2) and left guard (10) in 2004; registered 75 knockdown blocks. Began the 2005 season at left tackle, moved to right tackle for 2 games and then the final eight games at left guard; recorded 76 knockdowns and allowed just one sack. Started all 12 games at left guard in 2006; collected 102 key blocks/knockdowns, 12 touchdown-resulting blocks and allowed just 1.5 of the team's 23 quarterback sacks. Was suspended for the Big Ten opener in 2006 by coach Kirk Ferentz for a violation of unspecified team rules. Jones has playing experience at all four guard and tackle positions. He finished his career with 43 consecutive starts - 36 at left guard, 3 at left tackle and 4 at right tackle. Education major.
Combine Workout: Measured 6050, 309; ran 1.80 10-yard dash, 3.07 20-yard dash, 5.46 40-yard dash, 25 ½-inch vertical jump, 8'-2" broad jump, 4.88 20-yard shuttle, 7.84 three-cone drill, 28 reps at 225 pounds.
Campus Workout: 1.78 10-yard dash, 3.14 20-yard dash, 5.50 40-yard dash, 30-inch vertical jump, 8'-3" broad jump, 4.73 20-yard shuttle, 7.77 three-cone drill, 26 reps at 225 pounds.
Pro: Originally signed as an undrafted free agent by the San Diego Chargers following the 2007 NFL Draft. Was released by the Chargers at the end of training camp last season and spent the final seven weeks of his rookie season on the Chicago Bears' practice squad last year. He was released by the Bears on May 6, 2008. Jones was added to the Vikings roster in June 2008.
Positives: Nice size and strength. Flashes power in the running game and can anchor on pass protection. Generally stays on his feet and is productive. Above-average overall technique. Good hand use. Mirrors and slides well in pass protection. Gets position and is effective in close quarters. Tough and durable. Hard worker.
Negatives: Average athlete who looks sluggish and stiff the further he has to move. Is not that effective on the move or in the open field. Can be out-quicked and beaten with speed. Bends at the waist at times. Had some conflicts with his coaches in college.
Summary: Big, strong, tough, physical, durable, productive blocker who fits the team's scheme as a zone-style blocker at right guard. Faces a tough numbers game to make the team but has enough going for him to make it.
What they said:
"Has not received a lot of fanfare...but has quietly gone about doing his job and done it well. Has the size, strength, toughness and work ethic to develop into a solid pro." - Nolan Nawrocki, Pro Football Weekly
"Has good short-area explosion and good hand placement to be an effective drive blocker. He is better working at the line than into the second level, but he has the functional quickness to get in front on pulls and traps. His versatility will be a bonus, as he spends his first year or so allowing his body to mature." - NFLDraftScout.com
"Jones lacks any elite physical qualities. He's tall and lean with limited range. However, he is a blue-collar player with the savvy and toughness to find his way onto a NFL team." - Scouts, Inc.
"Very experienced - has started since he was a freshman. Started 34 consecutive games. Definitely a blue-collar guy who's scrappy. Can get to the second level on running plays and holds his own in pass protection. Isn't a great athlete, but gets the job done." - Ryan Rigmaiden, Seahawks.NET
"Jones is an explosive interior blocker who plays with a nasty attitude. Jones drives defenders off the line then seals them from the action with good body positioning. Best in a small area he is not effective in motion but offers size, growth potential and will get middle-round consideration." - TFY Draft Review
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