Summertime Blog Bits: Linebacker Greg Jones
In this installment of “Blog Bits,” linebacker Greg Jones talks about his work at outside linebacker.
Q. You’ve gotten some snaps at the outside. How has that gone?
A. It’s gone well. I played outside for two years in college and then I played middle. I came in here at the middle, so…
Q. When they first came to you and asked you to learn the SAM, what was your reaction?
A. I was surprised because there was no heads up whatsoever. It was right before we were getting ready to go out for a practice, they told me, ‘Hey, you’re going to the outside linebacker spot.’
Q. When did they tell you?
A. The second OTA. The first OTA I was at the middle. I thought they might tell me the day before, but it was the day of (the second OTA), so I just happened to be looking at that position a little bit. I figured I might as well get ready to do that, and I did it and I was fine.
Q. Is you’re head swimming a bit given that last year you worked the middle and now you have to learn a new position at this level?
A. A little bit. But it’s part of the job. Some guys have to move. Coach always says you have to be able to play every position, so it’s part of the job description, and I am getting used to that, and I am understanding what they want. Right now my role is to play strong side, so I am just going to embrace that right now.
Q. What can you take from your skill set in the middle to the strong side?
A. Just knowing what that middle linebacker had to do. In knowing that, it makes my job a lot easier. And then really I like to come, I like to blitz and have fun trying to get the quarterback, and I think that definitely suits me.
Q. Does that make you feel good knowing that your coaches think you have what it takes to increase your role in this, your second season?
A. Definitely. Getting thrown into the fire last year definitely made me kind of grow up faster and mature in the defense so after that and then moving over to the outside, I felt confidential. Being able to do it all again. This is actually a better scenario because I have time to learn it before I get thrown into a game, preseason, or whatever, so this is actually a better situation as far as learning a new position.
Q. Last year, did you feel like you were drowning a little bit given the circumstances?
A. Yeah, it took some time for me, but I wouldn’t say I was drowning. But it was definitely difficult because I was trying to get used to these guys and learn what they were doing., their language, and how to become a better teammate. It took some time, it I think I am definitely there now. We know each other’s abilities and strengths and weaknesses so we’ll beta move forward.
Q. When you look back at your rookie campaign, what lesson do you take from it?
A: Actions speak louder than words. I feel like we were thrown into the fire early on against really good teams every week, so I think we all came through that baptism by fire pretty well because we went to work and didn’t talk about it. We did what we had to do and it helped us win a Super Bowl.