Jones and Jones are two much for Ravens

Jaguars rookie receiver, second-year back burn veteran defense for 223 yards, 2 TDs

Ravens Gameday

Jaguars 30, Ravens 3

November 14, 2005|By JEFF ELLIOTT | JEFF ELLIOTT,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

JACKSONVILLE, FLA. -- To put it succinctly, the Ravens couldn't keep up with the Joneses yesterday.

In this case, it was a matter of stopping Jacksonville Jaguars rookie Matt Jones and second-year pro Greg Jones.

The Jones-Jones combination accounted for 223 of the Jaguars' 338 total yards yesterday, with both players coming through with career performances.

Matt Jones, a former quarterback at the University of Arkansas whom the Jaguars used a first-round pick (No. 21 overall) to draft and then convert to a wide receiver, caught five passes for 117 yards and one touchdown.

Before his big performance against the Ravens, Jones' best game came two weeks earlier when he had four catches, but just 38 yards.

"In our offense when we have three wide-outs, any one of the receivers can get open for big plays. It was just my day today," said the speedy, 6-foot-6, 229-pound receiver. "When the chances and the ball come to you, you definitely want to catch it so they'll throw more your way."

Jones' most productive catch was a 32-yarder where he got a step on the Ravens' Chris McAlister and caught a Byron Leftwich pass just inside the back line of the end zone. But the catch he said he'll remember the most was a 36-yard reception against defender Deion Sanders at the 4-yard line. The Jaguars scored two plays later when Greg Jones went around right end from 1 yard.

"Deion is probably one of my favorite players ever since watching him as I was growing up," Matt Jones said. "It was awesome to make the catch on him. He's going to be in the Hall of Fame someday and to be able to say you played against him and caught a pass on him is something that I'll remember forever."

Greg Jones likely will remember this game forever as well. He trotted off the field holding the game ball, awarded to him as a symbolic gesture for his first 100-yard rushing game as a pro. He finished with 106 yards on 25 carries with a long gain of 20 while scoring once.

"I'm going to keep this game ball. It's been awhile since I've had a 100-yard game, but now I have one as a Jaguar," Jones said.

He hadn't topped the 100-yard mark since his junior season at Florida State when he ran for 189 yards against Miami in 2002. Jones was converted to fullback before this season because the Jaguars had Fred Taylor at running back and Jones was packing 250 pounds on his 6-1 frame.

He filled in for the injured Taylor against the Pittsburgh Steelers three weeks ago and gained 77 yards on 18 carries. With Taylor still nursing a bruised ankle, Jones was moved back to running back yesterday.

"When Fred can't play, I'm there. Whatever they ask me to do, I'll do," said Jones, a second-round pick a year ago.

"Today it was a team effort. The offensive line, the tight end, the fullback, the receivers -- everyone was blocking at the line and downfield. They [Ravens] are so talented on defense and they throw so many looks at you, you don't know what to do sometimes. We just went out there and accomplished what we put our minds to."

That was something the Ravens didn't do, which is why they weren't able to keep up with the Joneses.

Notes -- Matt Jones had the three longest receptions of his career with 32-, 36- and 42-yard catches.... Leftwich has thrown a touchdown pass in seven consecutive games, equaling a team record. ... The Jaguars scored 30 points, ending an NFL-record-tying 58-game streak of not reaching 30. ... The Ravens' eight first downs were the third fewest the Jaguars have allowed in their 11-year history. ... The Jaguars 13-play, 92-yard drive was a season high for each. Greg Jones' 100-yard rushing effort made him the fifth Jaguar to rush for the century mark and the first one other than Taylor since Stacey Mack in 2001.

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