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PackPros: Josh Jones 2020 Outlook

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Former NC State Safety Josh Jones went from being on his way out of the NFL, to starting Strong Safety for the Jacksonville Jaguars heading into Game 1 of the 2020 NFL Season.

Jones was drafted by the Packers in the 2nd round of the 2017 NFL Draft. He saw playing time in 29 games over two seasons, but never seemed to live up to the hype, and eventually a sour relationship developed between Green Bay and the former Wolfpacker.

The Packers waived Jones right before the season began last year, and the Cowboys claimed him off of Waivers on October 2. He began on Dallas’ Practice Squad, but he would eventually make it on the 53-man roster for 6 games, playing primarily on Special Teams. He played 66 snaps on Special Teams and only 8 snaps as a Defensive Back.

Jones was waived by Dallas on December 28th of last year. Three days later, he was claimed off of Waivers by the Jacksonville Jaguars.

In an unexpected move, the Jags traded 2018 third-round draft pick Ronnie Harrison to Cleveland for a draft pick. Harrison started every game at Strong Safety in Jacksonville last year, and in 8 out of 14 as a Rookie.

Why?

Because Josh Jones beat out Harrison for his job.

“So all of a sudden you’re coming in there and you’re not looking to move the chart, as far as the depth chart or getting guys reps, and he came back with knowledge and enthusiasm and being in the right position and making plays from the first day walking into the building,” Jags Head Coach Doug Marrone said.

“I didn’t really want to mess up the depth chart too much early on, but I was like, ‘Shoot, we have to see more. We’ve got to see more. We’ve got to give this guy an opportunity.’ I think every time we had given him an opportunity, he showed up big, he really did. He took advantage of it. A lot of times players that maybe bounce around a little bit or something, I don’t want to put words in Josh’s mouth, but sometimes you’re like, ‘Hey, this is it. This is the last opportunity for me,’ and I think that might have played into his mindset after the season last year.”

“Josh has had a tremendous camp. He’s a guy that can play both in the backend and play up close to the box. He’s big. He’s got very good play speed and he’s long, like Ronnie is, and he can cover half the field, so we felt really good about him,” general manager Dave Caldwell said last Saturday. (SI)

Jones’ base salary will be $825,000 this year, and he will be a Free Agent after the season.

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Matthew is Co-Owner of Pack Insider. He writes for all sports, with a focus on football and recruiting, and is in charge of business strategy. He is an NC State alum who majored in business. Matthew is also the lead pastor of The Point Church in Cary, NC.

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Pack in the Pros

Zonovan Knight Makes Jets History in NFL Debut

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Former NC State All-American (Kickoff Returner) and All-ACC Running Back Zonovan Knight made his NFL debut today in the Jets 31-10 victory over the Bears, and in doing so, he made New York history.

Knight had 69 yards on 14 carries (4.9 yards per carry) and had 3 receptions for 34 yards, giving him 103 yards from scrimmage, setting a new Jets record for yards from scrimmage in an NFL debut.

Bam went undrafted earlier this year, but then signed an undrafted free agent deal with New York. He initially made the Jets 53-man roster, but then was waived a few days later to make space for an Offensive Lineman. Two days later, the Jets signed Knight to their Practice Squad, and that’s where he was until he was called up to the 53-man roster on October 25th.

Though Bam has been on the 53-man roster since then, today was the first time that he was Active. This came after Jets Running Back James Robinson was listed as a healthy scratch. When Running Back Michael Carter left the game in the 1st half with an ankle injury, it was Knight’s turn to step in as RB1.

Knight ended up playing 49% of the offensive snaps for the Jets today.

Also, dude was wearing a Scarface sweater for his postgame press conference…serious drip.

Also, Knight made a bet with Jets Running Back Michael Carter, a former Tar Heel, that if NC State beat UNC, he would have to wear an NC State shirt tomorrow to practice. Love it Bam!

Knight might have just made a big enough splash to justify more of an active role with the New York Jets.

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Pack in the Pros

Carlos Rodon Finishes 6th in 2022 National League Cy Young Award Voting

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Earlier this week, the 2022 Cy Young Winners were announced, and former NC State All-American Pitcher Carlos Rodon came in 6th in the National League voting.

Sandy Alcantara, MIA: 30 (first-place votes) – 210 points
Max Fried, ATL: 10 (2nd), 7 (3rd), 5 (4th), 1 (5th) – 72 points
Julio Urías, LAD: 7 (2nd), 9 (3rd), 5 (4th), 1 (5th) – 66 points
Aaron Nola, PHI: 5 (2nd), 6 (3rd), 4 (4th), 2 (5th) – 48 points
Zac Gallen, ARI: 3 (2nd), 5 (3rd), 6 (4th), 6 (5th) – 45 points
Carlos Rodón, SF: 3 (2nd), 1 (3rd), 4 (4th), 7 (5th) – 30 points
Corbin Burnes, MIL: 1 (2nd), 2 (3rd), 1 (4th), 8 (5th) – 20 points
Yu Darvish, SD: 3 (4th), 1 (5th) – 7 points
Edwin Díaz, NYM: 1 (2nd), 2 (5th) – 6 points
Kyle Wright, ATL: 1 (4th), 1 (5th) – 3 points
Logan Webb, SF: 1 (4th) – 2 points
Ryan Helsley, STL: 1 (5th) – 1 point (MLB)

Rodon finished the 2022 season with a 14-8 record, a 2.88 ERA, 237 strikeouts (179 innings) and a WHIP of 1.03. In the National League, he ranked 6th in ERA, 2nd in K’s, 9th in WHIP and 9th in Wins.

In 2021, Rodon finished 5th in the Cy Young Award voting for the American League.

Rodon is now a Free Agent, and is set to become a very wealthy man after the past two seasons he’s put together.

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Pack in the Pros

Trea Turner Wins First Silver Slugger Award

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Former NC State All-American Shortstop recently won the National League Silver Slugger Award for the Shortstop position, the first of his career.

Among Shortstops, Turner led the MLB in hits (194) while coming 2nd in Batting Average (.298), doubles (39) and RBI’s (100).

Turner also earned his 2nd All-Star appearance in 2022.

The Dodgers recently issued a Qualifying Offer to Turner, who is now a Free Agent, and as expected he declined it.

Turner is about to make boat loads of money.

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Pack in the Pros

Pack Pros: NFL Week 10 Report

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This past weekend was the 10th week of the 2022 NFL season. Below is a breakdown of how the former NC State players on NFL rosters did.

Wide Receiver Marquez Valdes-Scantling had 3 receptions for 60 yards and a touchdown in the Chiefs’ 27-17 win over the Jags.

Punter AJ Cole averaged an insane 58.8 yards per punt (5 punts) in the Raiders’ 20-25 loss to the Colts.

Quarterback Jacoby Brissett was 22 of 35 for 212 yards with a touchdown in the Browns’ 17-39 loss to the Dolphins. He also rushed the ball 7 times for 40 yards.

Defensive Tackle Justin Jones had 3 tackles, 2 tackles for loss and 1 QB Hit in the Bears’ 30-31 loss to the Lions.

 

Linebacker Bradley Chubb had 3 tackles, 0.5 sacks, and 3 QB Hits in the Dolphins 39-17 win over the Browns.

Quarterback Russell Wilson was 21 of 42 for 286 yards and a touchdown (1 interception) in the Broncos’ 10-17 loss to the Titans.

Running Back Nyheim Hines had 1 reception for 9 yards, and returned 3 punts for an average of 8.3 yards per return in the Bills’ 30-33 loss to the Vikings.

Defensive Tackle Kentavius Street had 3 tackles in the Saints’ 10-20 loss to the Steelers.

Defensive End James Smith-Williams had 2 tackles in the Commanders’ 32-21 win over the Eagles.

Cornerback Nick McCloud had 1 tackle in the Giants’ 24-16 win over the Texans.

Punter Trenton Gill averaged 43 yards per punt on 3 punts in Chicago’s 30-31 loss to Detroit.

Guard Joe Thuney (Chiefs), Center Garrett Bradbury (Vikings) and Tackle Ikem Ekownu (Panthers) played 100% of the snaps for their teams.

BYE

Linebacker Germaine Pratt (Bengals)

Defensive Tackle BJ Hill (Bengals)

Wide Receiver Jakobi Meyers (Pats)

Running Back Zonovan Knight (Jets)

INJURY

Juston Burris (Panthers) – Concussion

 

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