In our efforts to leave no turn unstoned. . .or something like that. . .we have another free agency rumor for you to digest concerning our favorite football team.
Word has come out over the Twitters that the Minnesota Vikings are interested in Baltimore Ravens' defensive lineman Arthur Jones. Jones was the Ravens' fifth-round pick (#157 overall) out of Syracuse in the 2010 NFL Draft, and has played his entire career in Charm City.
The experts from Pro Football Focus have Jones ranked as their #5 interior defender available in free agency this season. Here's what they had to say about him.
The last two seasons Arthur Jones has come from nowhere to make a name for himself as a tremendous run defender with adequate pass rushing skills. In Jones' first two seasons he played a total of 290 snaps. Then in 2012 he started getting more meaningful playing time and didn't disappoint. From Week 12 through the Super Bowl that season, he amassed a grade of +10.6 while playing in 51% of the snaps. This season he saw a slight bump up to 55% of the possible snaps, but continued the solid play with a run defense grade of +12.9 and a pass rushing grade of +1.9.
Jones is still young at 28 years old and so far he's only gotten better with every opportunity that has presented itself. He doesn't get many snaps in obvious passing situations, but it's impressive that he was at least above average playing mostly run downs where it's harder to get pressure. At 6-foot-3, 305-pounds he could likely play in either a 3-4 or a 4-3. Choosing between him and Linval Joseph seems like a coinflip in my book. Joseph may be younger and more proven, but Jones' talent and production on a per play basis has outpaced Joseph's.
Jones also comes from a pretty athletic bloodline. His two younger brothers are New England Patriots defensive end Chandler Jones and Jon "Bones" Jones, the UFC Light Heavyweight Champion and the current "pound-for-pound" #1 in the UFC.
A defensive lineman with Jones' versatility might be appealing to Mike Zimmer and company as they attempt to revamp the Minnesota defense. We'll see what materializes from this. . .if anything. . .when free agency gets underway on Tuesday at 3 PM Central.