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Chris Jones is Important!!!!

In the 2016 NFL draft, the Kansas City Chiefs drafted Chris Jones with the 37th overall selection of the second round.  At that time, Jones was viewed as the fifth-best defensive tackle in the draft.  Who are the four defensive tackles selected ahead of Chris Jones?  They are DeForest Buckner drafted by the 49ers, Sheldon Rankins drafted by the Saints, Kenny Clark drafted by the Packers, and Vernon Butler drafted by the Panthers.


Chris Jones -Bleacher Report
Bleacher Report / Article By Thomas Minor  / Chiefs Focus / @universalchiefs


At 6’6″ and 310 pounds, Chris Jones is a larger-than-life figure anchoring the defensive front for Kansas City.  Jones’s size alone makes him a polarizing figure, but his immediate impact on the defensive front has been equally polarizing.  In his rookie season, Chris Jones played in 16 games and was a starter on eleven occasions. He tallied 28 combined tackles (17 solo and 11 assists), four pass deflections, and two sacks.


In his second season, Chris Jones played in all 17 games, but only started seven games.  That would lead you to believe his production would have declined, right?  It had the opposite effect.  In his sophomore campaign, Chris Jones had a combined 32 tackles (22 solo tackles and 10 assists), seven pass deflections, and six and a half sacks.  He used this as a means of motivation and it worked.


Chris Jones-Draft Network
Draft Network


In 2018, Chris Jones would put it all together and catapult himself to the upper echelon of defensive tackles in the National Football League.  In his third professional season, Chris Jones played in all 16 regular season games and was a starter 11 times.  He increased his combined tackles to 40 (35 solo and five assists).  Also, Jones stockpiled five pass deflections, 15.5 sacks, one interception, and one forced fumble.  Officially, he had arrived!


In 2019, the offenses in the National Football League had taken notice of Chris Jones’ arrival, as well.  Seemingly overnight, he became the person opposing teams would double and triple team on the Chiefs’ interior defensive line.  This caused Jones’s overall stats to dip some.  He recorded 36 combined tackles (23 solo and 13 assists), four pass deflections, 13 sacks, one forced fumble, and one fumble recovery (still insanely awesome stat lines).  What the stats don’t tell you is how Chris Jones garnering all the attention allowed his defensive teammates to thrive and the overall defense to become formidable.


Chris Jones-The Spun
The Spun


Chris Jones’ play would help lead the Kansas City Chiefs to a Super Bowl victory over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LIV.  Jones had established himself as one of the best defensive linemen in all of football.  The only person considered on his level or better was Aaron Donald of the Rams.  The Chiefs felt this way and proceeded to pay him as a top-tier defensive lineman in the National Football League.


In the 2020 season, Chris Jones would still feel the effects of being the main attraction for the Chiefs’ defense.  He was able to put up almost identical stats as his 2019 campaign.  He would help lead the Chiefs to the Super Bowl in consecutive years.  Despite beating the odds and going back-to-back years to the Super Bowl, the playoff journey proved costly to the Chiefs this time.  They would sustain injuries to the offensive line that would leave them vulnerable to the pass rush of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.  This Super Bowl appearance ended in defeat for Chris Jones and the Chiefs.


Chris Jones-Las Vegas Review-Journal
Las Vegas Review-Journal


In the 2021 Season, Chris Jones would have some of the lowest stats since his rookie year.  Even though he was able to tally 9 sacks in 2021, Jones only compiled 27 combined tackles (18 solo and 9 assists).  He and the Chiefs’ defense played well enough to get the team to their fourth consecutive AFC championship game against the Cincinnati Bengals.  The Chiefs took a commanding lead in the first half but would blow a scoring opportunity at the end of the half that would come back to haunt them.  Along with the scoring blunder of the first half, Chris Jones would miss several opportunities to sack Joe Burrow and potentially close out the win.  Jones would later say that this haunted him and was the motivation for his off-season workouts.  The Chiefs would lose in overtime by a field goal.


Fast forward to the 2022 season, Chris Jones was on a mission.  During the regular season, Jones recorded 44 combined tackles a career-high (30 solo and 14 assists), four pass deflections, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, and 15.5 sacks.  In all, it should have been three forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, and 16.5 sacks.  Due to one of the worst calls of all time, Jones was stripped of these stats after crushing Derek Carr in an awesome play.


Chris Jones-Fox 4 Kansas City WDAF-TV
Fox 4 Kansas City WDAF-TV


The Chris Jones-led Chiefs’ defense would roar through the regular season and help Kansas City obtain the overall #1 seed in the AFC.  After being much maligned for not having any playoff sacks, Chris Jones would produce when the Chiefs needed him the most.  In the AFC championship game, Jones sacked Joe Burrow twice.  Each sack was timely and gave the ball back to the offense at critical points in the game.  The Chiefs would move on to Super Bowl LVII and defeat the Philadelphia Eagles.


Chris Jones -The Dispatch
The Dispatch


Without Chris Jones, the Chiefs do not get to three Super Bowls.  Since 2016, he has been the one consistent force that opposing teams have to game plan against.  He is an instant mismatch for any offensive line and is the sole reason the Chiefs’ defense has continued to get better each year.  Without Jones, there is a figurative and literal hole in the Chiefs’ defense.  Getting Chris Jones paid is maximizing the window for Patrick Mahomes and this franchise’s opportunity to etch their story into the history books of the National Football League as one of the greatest franchises ever!


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