After INT, Chris Jones says he's ready to play defensive back
Asked about becoming a leader, Chiefs defensive tackle Chris Jones suggested he was the quiet type who prefers to let his playing do the talking.
Then he burst into laughter.
Anybody who knows Jones understands there is nothing muted about his game ... or his personality. Both shined in the Chiefs’ 27-20 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday.
Jones contributed three sacks and an interception of Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz. It was easily the most productive outing of his 18-game professional career, and it came a week after he didn’t record as much as a tackle in the opening week game against the Patriots.
And Jones was ready to talk about it.
“I’m a quiet guy, I like to stay silent,” Jones said.
Pause … wait for it.
“You know I’m playing with y’all!
“You know I just want to do what I can to help this defense, whether that’s blocking a field, playing quarterback, playing tight end, catching interceptions, playing (defensive back), whatever I got to do to help our team win.”
Jones, the second year pro from Mississippi State, has been clamoring to take a snap at quarterback since he’s been with the Chiefs. The team will settle for more of what it saw from him at defensive tackle on Sunday.
The interception — the Chiefs’ first of the season — couldn’t have been better timed. The Eagles had tied it 13 with a Jake Elliott field goal early in the fourth quarter, and the Chiefs had just punted it away.
On third-and-12 from the Eagles 31, Wentz’s screen pass went off Justin Houston’s shoulder pad and into the air. Jones was in the right place to snag it.
After he caught it, Jones started heading in the wrong direction before he was tackled. Officially, the return lost three yards.
“I was headed home,” Jones said. “Not the end zone, but to Overland Park. I had to realize where I was at. I had a Snickers moment. But it was a great feeling.”
Jones also was credited with four solo tackles and two forced fumbles. The first came in the second quarter when Jones recorded his first sack. He stripped Wentz, who recovered the ball.
The second came on the final play of the third quarter. Another Jones sack, another Wentz fumble and recovery.
When Jones recorded his third sack, he surpassed his total from all of last season. The last Chief with a three-sack game? Justin Houston, on Nov. 27, 2016, at Denver.
Jones also overcame a tough collision with teammate Ramik Wilson in the second half. It appeared Jones might have suffered a concussion or neck injury. Turned out, Jones’ helmet slipped down and hit him in the eye.
Chiefs coach Andy Reid came out with the team’s trainers to check on Jones, who was on his back. Soon, Jones was up. After missing the rest of that defensive series, he got back in the game and was among the players urging on the Arrowhead Stadium crowd.
“How can you not get back in the game, with all that intensity, in front of the Chiefs fans?” Jones said. “I had to get back out there. Too many emotions; my emotions were high.”
That’s always the case with Jones. And on Sunday, his game was elevated as well.