Mularkey deserves better from Jones-Drew

April, 17, 2012
4/17/12
5:12
PM ET
Set aside whether or not Maurice Jones-Drew is unhappy with his contract, which Pete Prisco of CBS suggests is the case.

The running back is the Jaguars' most recognizable player, best skill player and the face of the franchise.

Jones-Drew
New coach Mike Mularkey started an orientation series of OTAs today, and MJD was not there.

Mularkey said yesterday that he didn’t know of anyone beyond defensive tackle Terrance Knighton, recovering from an eye injury, and Josh Scobee, unhappy about being franchise tagged, who would not be with the team.

And then his biggest guy is not there.

Per Tania Ganguli of the Florida Times-Union Mularkey said he had an inkling Jones-Drew would be absent, but they hadn't spoken of it. Mularkey had asked players to let the team know if they wouldn't be around.

Given that...

No matter your complaint or your leverage, no matter if you’re just married, what exactly is the reasoning behind not telling your new boss that you won’t be around for the team’s first gathering?

It’s not mandatory. Jones-Drew doesn’t have to be there. But a phone call, text or email giving Mularkey a heads up would have qualified as a common courtesy.

Instead, Jones-Drew winds up making Mularkey look bad.

The coach looks like he’s not influential or respected, and considering he’s just getting started he deserves far better from his star.

It doesn’t enhance MJD's case at being worth more than he’s scheduled to make, if that’s part of what he’s getting at.

It’s a bad start to an important relationship.

Paul Kuharsky | email

ESPN Tennessee Titans reporter

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