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Pacman to rookies: Learn from my mistakes

Adam+Jones+Baltimore+Ravens+v+Cincinnati+Bengals+_ujB-FEb5hFl Getty Images

If the NFL was looking for the best possible speaker to invite to this year’s Rookie Symposium in order to express to this year’s rookie class the wrong way to do things, they couldn’t have done much better than Bengals cornerback Adam “Pacman” Jones.

Jones was the sixth overall pick of the 2005 Draft and made good on his lofty draft position in his early years with the Titans. He never fully blossomed into a star, though, because he couldn’t stay out of trouble off the field. That led to suspensions, long absences from the game and his departure from Tennessee, leaving him to continue his career as a sub corner without any of the special buzz he brought to the game when he first hit the NFL.

Avoiding the same kind of career trajectory was the theme of Jones’ speech to the rookies on Monday. He didn’t want the NFL Network or NFL.com to broadcast his discussion, but he shared some of what he talked about with Jeff Darlington of NFL.com.

“If I could tell them anything, I just want them to realize this is a business,” Jones said. “When you sign your contract, you are the head CEO of your company. The Adam Jones Company – whatever it is. We can’t go running down a field for the rest of our life. Every decision you make is critical. It might not get you now. But it will get you later.”

The NFL should hope that Jones is a better speaker than he is a listener. Jones told Darlington that he didn’t pay any attention during his own time attending the symposium, something he regrets as a missed learning opportunity. Monday’s speech seemed to captivate one listener. Seahawks linebacker Bobby Wagner told Darlington that he sought out Jones for advice after the speech wrapped up.

“He was going through something that I was going through, so I asked him personally what he did so I can try to apply it to my life,” said Wagner. “It helps knowing that somebody went through what you went through. You can take what you need from it and apply it to your life. “A lot of players in here are going through some of the same things, whether its baby mamas or trying to pick a financial advisor to an issue with an agent. We can learn from this. We can learn from him.”

That would be the first clear positive to come out of the mistakes Jones has made in his career.

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24 Responses to “Pacman to rookies: Learn from my mistakes”
  1. jerrysandusky1 says: Jun 25, 2012 2:04 PM

    All jokes aside, I hope PacMan has turned a corner.

  2. purplengold says: Jun 25, 2012 2:05 PM

    You can’t teach stupid.

  3. nflfollower says: Jun 25, 2012 2:09 PM

    I wouldn’t seek him out for personal advice. Maybe a different current player who has had a measure of success off the field.

  4. 10kmp says: Jun 25, 2012 2:16 PM

    These guys are so very young when they enter this league. When you’re 20-22 years old and you suddenly have available to you more money than you can possibly imagine, I think it would be extremely difficult to remain humble and to make good decisions. Adam Jones has matured. Think back to when you were 22. Legally you were an adult, but socially, intellectually, and spiritually you were far from mature if you were like most of us at that age. I hope Jones continues to salvage his career and life…

  5. biggerballz says: Jun 25, 2012 2:21 PM

    nflfollower, you sir are a moron. He is the best example of what not to do, get Leaf and Russell and you’ll have the BEST advice at a Rookie Symposium.

  6. mrgroovesd says: Jun 25, 2012 2:26 PM

    Alway thought Pacman could be a great player but those bone head decisions hurt him badly and hurt his time being on the field.

  7. tsizzlehotpiss says: Jun 25, 2012 2:28 PM

    Jamarcus Russell would be too lazy to show up to a rookie symposium, and Ryan Leaf wouldn’t be able to show up because he would be locked up.

    I hope Janoris Jenkins takes a long, hard look at what’s happened to Adam Jones. Jenkins hasn’t been remotely on Jones’ level of trouble, but situations can escalate quickly when you’re using poor judgment.

  8. bangitfootball says: Jun 25, 2012 2:31 PM

    Alas, Pacman can only make it cloudy these days.

  9. rgwhodey says: Jun 25, 2012 2:34 PM

    from an outside perspective it really does appear Adam “Don’t call me Pacman” Jones has turned a corner. From helping with troubled youth from over the rhine with the cpd chief of police to the rookie symposium he is doing all the right things keep it up Adam retire a Bengal on your terms.
    just sayin

  10. peytonwantsaflag says: Jun 25, 2012 2:41 PM

    The hardest thing a man can do is to change. Your ego is against you, satan is against you, your family and friends are often against you, snarky journalists and snickering fans are against you. The greatest thing Adam can do in his life is not going to be on the field -it might be this, and this simple thing might just make a difference in someone’s life- good luck and God bless Adam.

  11. despinosa8 says: Jun 25, 2012 2:56 PM

    Pacman has yet to hit bottom… I think TO would have been a better moto of what players shouldn’t follow……

  12. swingondeesenuts says: Jun 25, 2012 3:06 PM

    The fact that this guy isn’t in jail is sickening. The fact that he is now invited by the NFL to “mentor” young players is just crazy. I can only hope “pacman” ends up broke and in jail sooner rather than later.

  13. jsratx says: Jun 25, 2012 3:17 PM

    If it’s one thing young men need, it’s advice for baby-mama’s. Too bad the rookie symposium can’t reach into HS and college ranks so these guys don’t have BABY MAMA’S to begin with.

    Good grief. Wrap it up, guys.

  14. tebowsafraud says: Jun 25, 2012 3:18 PM

    All Pacman needed to say was…

    1) Never go to strip clubs 2) be in bed by 12 midnite 3) cut your ties to any and all “home boys” especially those with gang affiliations.

    Thats it—very simple. Thats all he would have had to do to be rich and successful instead of broke and barely hanging on in the league.

  15. swingondeesenuts says: Jun 25, 2012 3:55 PM

    18 “thumbs down” for stating the TRUTH that Adam Jones should be in jail for his DIRECT involvement in a shooting? Wow…..

    No matter as he just got hammered in the civil suit which will basically ensure that between the restitution for this shooting and child support to his baby mommas, his days of “making it rain” are over.

  16. bengalsucker says: Jun 25, 2012 4:11 PM

    “swingondeesenuts says:
    Jun 25, 2012 3:55 PM
    18 “thumbs down” for stating the TRUTH that Adam Jones should be in jail for his DIRECT involvement in a shooting? Wow…..

    No matter as he just got hammered in the civil suit which will basically ensure that between the restitution for this shooting and child support to his baby mommas, his days of “making it rain” are over.”

    Dude, Adam didn’t even do the shooting. He was just there. Now instead of going after the shooter like they would in any other case, the victim’s lawyer goes after the richest guy there and makes him pay for what the shooter did. Yeah I’m sure Adam wasn’t innocent in a fight maybe, but he didn’t shoot anyone and that was proven. Why should he have to pay the victim and nobody else that was fighting be responsible as well? Nobody else that was involved in the fight is even included in on this lawsuit. It’s only Jones because he’s rich and was there. That’s a weak argument.

  17. fdugrad says: Jun 25, 2012 4:34 PM

    I NEVER thought I would EVER say the following: AMEN P-Man. Perhaps he has a new career after football. I realize the situation with the victim is not over and there is a long way to go, however, I hope P-M can turn his life and the lives of others around in a positive direction. Hard to imagine ANYONE not listening and taking to heart what he says.

  18. ken14andersonforhof says: Jun 25, 2012 5:05 PM

    i think the fact that he is not where russle(out of the nfl) and leaf(prison) are, shows that he has learned something from his mistakes. he has shown(so far) that he did deserve a second chance that the nfl and the BENGALS gave him. to see him doing the right things in the community and to speak to younger players and tell them how to advoid the mistakes he has made, shows the maturity, that he has grown..i would suggest that he is deserving of praise..GOD bless adam, actions speak louder than words….WHO DEY…!!!!

  19. dwntwnbadboy19 says: Jun 25, 2012 5:24 PM

    @tebowsafraud, you sound like a real G! Jones would pick you up and throw you thru the exit door if you had balls to say that to him face to face. Talk some sense when posting, i am not a fan of his, but he still has upside, and would take him on my team anyday.

  20. draculalambert says: Jun 25, 2012 5:29 PM

    Look at that photo! Pac man is a BEAST! *woot woot*

  21. nepaseahawk says: Jun 25, 2012 7:05 PM

    he’s still doing better than ryan leaf…..could be worse I suppose

  22. granadafan says: Jun 26, 2012 12:51 AM

    Good for the NFL to pick the worst pieces of crud in the NFL to give lessons to the rookies. Do NOT turn out like these guys.

    Always wear a rubber, get rid of your entourages from back home, learn to say no, and be in charge of your own money. Avoid those “scrip clubs” that Pacman went to.

  23. spoiledbratswhosuck says: Jun 26, 2012 9:06 AM

    If PACMAN can willingly show the rookies the wrongs of his ways maybe he will turn out to be a successful man regardless of his past on and off the field. Some players, hopefully Pacman will become better citizens and people after they play which would make him a winner! Football should never define the person.

  24. vex24 says: Jun 27, 2012 7:56 AM

    The 90s in America was a horrible period for those of African decent in America. The systematic elimination of normative income (Jobs) and the necessary education for self-dependent trades. Self-Hate was monopolized and marketed by the corporate recording industry. Money was elevated to Super-deity status far above human worth. The obvious use of the Black inner-city as a profit center for Central and South America’s drug cartel and Contra (terrorist) support.
    These realities molded young African-American people and created a Neo-Racism that still permeates the vast majority of all citizenry (including many Blacks, too).
    This was the incubator that Baby Adam Jones was nutured. (Adam) Pacman (Jones) was created before he ever had a chance to think, or even be warned. The guidelines for his life were no different than Kunta Kenta in the movie ‘Roots’. Neither subjects were allowed to know themselves, first.
    I honor the efforts of this (still) Young Man. Not many Adults would be willing to bare their life in front of strangers as an example of what ‘..not to do.’

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