The last time Maurice Jones-Drew was healthy, the Jaguars running back won the NFL rushing title. Now that he’s in a contract year, Jones-Drew has every reason to try to climb to the top of the ladder, again.
But Jones-Drew said that’s not his motivation. In an interview with Scott Pioli that aired on Tuesday’s Pro Football Talk on NBCSN, Jones-Drew said that, at this stage of his career, he prefers racking up wins to yards.
“Obviously at 1,511 that year, I mean we did run the ball, we ran the ball well against some great defenses but I want to win,” Jones-Drew said. “That’s the main goal is to try to get wins. You know, it’s my eighth year in the league, you want to get back to the playoffs and see what it’s like.”
With Jones-Drew entering his eighth NFL season, some may say he’s getting a little too worn down. Jones-Drew has a specific reaction to that perception.
“I laugh because the first couple of years I was a backup,” Jones-Drew said. “Obviously, I missed a whole year last year so I feel fresher than what my age is but there’s always going to be naysayers and that’s what the talking heads’ jobs are there to do is to kind of find controversy and question certain things. One of the things I really enjoy about this game is getting back out here with my team and teammates and not being out here with them, not being out here to fight with them all offseason, during the season, those are things that I want to continue to build that bond and relationship with as well as getting my body back and ready to play at a high level.”
He needs to play at a high level, because Jones-Drew has embarked on the final year of his contract. But he says that’s not a concern.
“I really don’t worry about it too much,” Jones-Drew said. “I just focus on now and every day to get better and whatever happens in January, February or whatever that time comes, happens. I’m going to give everything I have every year and then, if that’s good enough it’s good enough and if it’s not, so be it.”
Jones-Drew said it’ll definitely be good enough for anyone who has the well-known fantasy-football owner on their team.
“Listen, if you want to win, put me in, simple as that,” Jones-Drew said. “If you don’t, then that’s your fault.”
It could be a little easier to get Jones-Drew this year than last year. And it may be a smart move to grab him.