Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew once stayed away from an entire offseason when he was unhappy with his contract.
And now, though his role is changing, he wants to sign another one.
The veteran running back said he wants to hang around for the Jaguars sudden turnaround, and sign a new deal there.
“I want to be here,” Jones-Drew said, via Mark Long of the Associated Press. “It’s a fun environment. It’s different than I’ve ever been a part of. It works. It takes time to build anything. It’s starting to turn around for us, and we’re starting to play well. That’s exciting.”
After losing their first eight games, the Jaguars have come out of the bye as one of the league’s hottest teams, winning three straight and four of their last five.
That has him willing to forgive and forget the fact he never got the new contract the previous administration promised him, while adapting to a new role that involves sharing the ball more. The Jaguars have indicated they’d like to have him back at the right price.
“I just want to be a leader,” he said. “Back when I was young and doing some wild stuff, we had older guys that would be like, ‘All right, calm down.’ Well, now I look around here and I’m like, ‘All right, where are these older guys at?’ Oh, I’m one of them. So you’ve kind of got to change some things, especially with what we’ve been going through.”
That kind of change underscores the progress coach Gus Bradley and General Manager Dave Caldwell have made in a short time, one which gives the Jaguars hope for the future.