Monday, June 10, 2013
Jones-Drew shouldn't let stuff get to him
By Paul Kuharsky
Maurice Jones-Drew doesn’t want to be a distraction for the Jaguars.
That’s an admirable desire for a guy who’s been a productive player and still qualifies as the face of his franchise. Last year's unsuccessful holdout and recent accusations that he threw a punch at a Jacksonville-area restaurant haven’t served him well.
He didn’t offer any comment on the accusation when he spoke with Jacksonville media on Monday, hardly a surprise considering it’s an ongoing investigation and he reportedly has not met with or spoken to police about it.
I’m sure he does all he can to protect his kids from questions about something like the alleged punch, and it’s an unfortunate side effect of celebrity that when such a thing happens relatives are affected.
The questions his teammates have faced about him are inevitable and will continue while he completes his rehabilitation of the foot injury that cost him a big share of last season.
He’s a 28 year-old running back in a league that chews them up and spits them out. There are harsh realities that come with that. They shouldn't be a surprise to a player heading into his eighth season.
He’s preparing to play for a fourth head coach in three years -- Jack Del Rio, interim replacement Mel Tucker, Mike Mularkey and now Gus Bradley. That's hardly ideal.
He’s right in that he’s always showed up and been ready and able to produce.
But Jones-Drew shouldn’t be frustrated by the questions that arise now as he comes off a serious injury and heads into the final year of his deal.
I think he should simply be motivated by them -- or, if he needs no additional motivation, he could simply brush them off.