Champions of The Round Table

 
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Chris Jones
Chris Jones is a competitor. He'll play offense, defense, special teams. He'll take a wicked hit and deliver his own even harder. In his chest beats the heart of a warrior. When you play safety, you're a man on an island. The decisions you make could make or break your team's fortunes. When you return punts, it's usually you alone hoping to make it back field to your blockers.

He also plays receiver and running back and then only thing he does about the same is pose a danger to the opposing team to be near the football.

But Nick Saban wants him, and maybe needs him even more, as a safety.

The only problem is a couple of dozen other teams would love to have him as well. And like a few other players Saban would love to land, Alabama is only one of Jones' top three teams.

So how good is Jones?

Think of him as a Javier Arenas replacement on bigger, stronger and scarier player. Though Javvy played corner and Jones is being looked at as a safety, Jones may be a blitz man like Arenas, return punts with the same ferocity and snag passes intended for the other team's receiver.

Starting his senior season in high school at Hueytown, Alabama, he's six foot and 187 pounds and still growing. He bench presses 330 pounds and has been said to squat as much as 415 pounds ten times in a row.



That allows him to use his 4.5 40 yard speed to deliver either a freight train hit to to shove off or stiff arm a potential tackler if he chooses not to simply run over him.

Because he plays just about all skilled positions, he knows just what they're thinking when he's playing against them.  That allows him to use his speed and his instincts together with fantastic results.

One such example was during one of the final games of last season. His team, the Minor Tigers, had a small lead over Hueytown in a game mired in mud that made moving the ball a nightmare.

Playing safety, Jones groaned as he saw the Hueytown QB try and surprise Minor with a quick kick. It was a good one with the ball landing in the quagmire at about the six yard line. Apparently Hueytown had flipped the filed.

Running to the ball, the smart play would be to down it or leave it alone and not attempt to scoop up a wet, muddy ball on the run, but that was not the choice Jones made.

After bobbling the ball twice, with opposing players closing in, he made a cut to the sideline to see nothing but trouble coming. He then reversed his field, giving up precious yardage to sprint as well as he could to other side.

His legs ached. It was like running in quicksand, but he knew it was just as difficult for his pursuers. As he broke in to the open and started down the far sideline he thought he might pass out.



He had already run down the ball, reversed across the entire width and was about to complete a 97 yard run. Had he run over 170 yards that play? He didn't know or care. He just knew his team needed a spark and was going to delver it.

He provided that spark numerous times last year with his interceptions, tackles behind the line, kick and punt returns as well as his rushing and receiving touchdowns. He was a threat to score by just touching the ball.

Though Saban has a bumper class of top talent already committed and a sure-fire overall top class, he needs defensive backs and Jones is just the guy he's looking for. He's a four star pick by Rivals and one of the top rated safeties in the South.

However, Jones has only narrowed his choices to three schools: Alabama, Florida and Tennessee. He is not expected to make a decision until at least the fall.

This is one Jones that Alabama doesn't want to have to keep up with, this is one they want to catch.