With Jones Signed, Packers Have All Aboard

Packers first-round pick Datone Jones will be asked to play a big role as a rookie. Is he ready to be a starter?

Jones will sign a 4 year deal worth a reported $7.7 million this week and report on time to training camp

The Green Bay Packers and first round draft pick Datone Jones agreed to a four year contract on Wednesday.  This was reported by Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.  The deal is expected to be signed on Thursday and with that, the Packers now have all of their 2013 draft picks under contract and ready to participate in training camp.

The Packers’ first training camp practice is scheduled for Friday morning.  Having all of their young players in attendance at camp is always a priority for the Packers, but none was a bigger priority than their first rounder.  Jones is expected to get a long look on the defensive line and could push both Mike Neal and CJ Wilson for a starting end spot.

Under the terms of the latest collective bargaining agreement, teams are required to sign their draftees to four year contracts, with the exception of their first round pick.  They can opt to add a fifth year to a first rounder’s deal.  The Packers opted to stick with four years with Jones and the deal is reported to be worth a total of $7.7 million with approximately $6.3 million of that in guaranteed money.  His signing bonus is reported at around $4 million.

With the signing coming just days before camp opens, some may have been nervous that a deal may not have been done on time.  However, some of the pain of negotiating rookie contracts has been removed with the rookie salary cap that was put into place.  This has helped teams avoid lengthy holdouts that had been more prevalent in the past.

Silverstein reminds us how it was not too long ago that we were all waiting for BJ Raji to sign his rookie contract nearly two weeks into the 2009 training camp.  Another “holdout” that many of us may have forgotten was quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who missed a few days of training camp in 2005 while waiting to sign his deal with the team.

It has been a busy offseason and preseason for the Packers.  The team gave contract extensions to Rodgers, Clay Matthews and Morgan Burnett and signed all 11 of their draft picks.  Now that Jones is signed, the team can shift its focus from the conference room to the field and truly begin preparing for the 2013 season.


Jason Perone is an independent sports blogger writing about the Packers on "AllGreenBayPackers.com

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9 Responses to “With Jones Signed, Packers Have All Aboard”

  1. Razer says:

    Rookie contracts are a lot more reasonable these days. Given that we don’t know how some of these players will turn out, there is now some sanity to the system. I am glad that Jones is in the family and we can focus on the team.

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  2. PatMc says:

    With this signing the packers have 44 drafted players signed in camp. They have 2 waivers and 42 FA’s. Total is only 88 as TT is probably looking to sign a veteran that might become available from other teams.

    For everyone that panicked last winter because TT wasn’t paying big bucks, GB is going into camp with 88 players that must be cut to 53 for the season. It is the most competitive camp that I’ve seen in my life.

    When those 53 players start at SF then we will see how good they are. GO PACK GO!

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  3. Batavia Greg says:

    Lost in the signing of Datone Jones was that of SS Ryan McMahon of Sacramento State. He is 5-11, 209 lbs, and runs the 40 in 4.5. He tried out at the Packers’ rookie orientation camp in May and then was invited to training camp. He had 183 tackles (97 solo), including seven for a loss, a sack, 11 passes defensed, two forced fumbles and an interception at Sacramento State after transferring from USC. The coaching staff must like him. Another UFA who possibly makes the roster?

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    • Batavia Greg says:

      P.S. I now wonder whether the Pack will cut Sean Richardson since he had cervical spine surgery in January.

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  4. bobalou13 says:

    “Could push Mike Neal and C.J. Wilson for a starting end spot”?? If this guy is not the opening day starter I will be officially worried. He is supposed to be the prototype for the “new” NFL. Jones and, hopefully, a resurgent Nick Perry need to be dominant forces if the defense is gonna take the step up that it needs to.

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    • Two Bears, One Cup says:

      While I would be very happy to see Datone Jones win a starting job, it seems that rookie d-linemen take a couple years to really start playing well. Probably need a year of NFL-level strength and conditioning.

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      • Stroh says:

        I think his strength and conditioning won’t be an issue. Looking at him from my perspective as a Strength and Conditioning coach, he looks to be about as heavily developed as he can. Maybe a little more gradually as he ages, but not a significant amount. The other thing might be learning to play w/ the intensity and technique in the NFL. Jones seems to have both of those. He played in the same scheme in college. And Jones is noted for playing w/ intensity. I expect Jones to be a starter, but think we still need to temper our enthusiasm a bit.

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