MJD wants to 'see it through' with Jaguars

Published on NewsOK Modified: December 30, 2013 at 5:46 pm •  Published: December 30, 2013
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Running back Maurice Jones-Drew wants to stick around for the next phase of Jacksonville's rebuilding project.

Just not at a discounted rate.

Jones-Drew made it clear Monday that his future with the franchise will be a fiscal decision, meaning his eighth season with the Jaguars may have been his last. Jones-Drew likely will test free agency before deciding whether to return to Jacksonville.

"I would love to see it through here, but ... it's a monetary issue," he said. "That's where we are now. It's not about football anymore. That's part of the deal, part of the game."

The NFL's leading rusher in 2011, Jones-Drew just played out a five-year, $31 million contract. He earned $4.95 million in 2013.

Jones-Drew declined to talk numbers Monday, but he sounded resigned to a potential move.

"Hopefully I can stay here, but that's not up to me," he said. "It's time to sit back with my family and talk and see what's best for us. I have three kids, don't want to move them around, but if that's the case, then it has to be done. We'll see. There are some other variables."

Jones-Drew finished with 803 yards rushing and five touchdowns this season. He missed most of the offseason following left foot surgery and missed a game and weeks of practice with a strained right hamstring.

Critics argue that Jones-Drew, who turns 29 in March, has lost a step and hasn't been the same since gaining 1,606 yards on 343 carries in 2011. They also insist his running style — he welcomes contact and gains most of his yards between the tackles — will shorten his career.

Others, including Jones-Drew, believe he will return to Pro Bowl form once he fully recovers from his foot injury.

"I still feel like I can compete with anybody," Jones-Drew said. "It was hard this (past) offseason. I really didn't get a chance to train. I rehabbed and I couldn't really do anything until March. Then we had to do the whole walking deal all over again. That took a month and a half. Then we had to do the running deal. That took about two months.



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