Josh Jones is in a Position to Succeed
Kevin King and Josh Jones will always be united. They were both taken in the same round with a common purpose: to fix the Packers’ defense and to do it fast. Both are exceptionally big and fast for their positions and both will be expected to contribute pretty much from day one.
But as rookie minicamp gets underway, Jones may have have an unusual advantage over his draft counterpart: while King has a very specific job, Jones will get opportunities to contribute all over the field.
While this could sound like it puts a lot of pressure on Jones, the reverse may actually be true. By lining him up in a variety of positions, the Packers will be giving Jones opportunities to succeed in smaller roles, ones built for his skill set.
That skill set has already proven to be quite diverse. Mike McCarthy said shortly after the draft that he envisioned Jones in a role similar to Micah Hyde’s. Pro Football Focus argues Jones has already done that and could be a good fit.
It seems the Packers are already taking steps to make that happen. Though you should take rookie minicamp with a grain of salt or two, Jones is already spending time with the linebackers.
But while Jones will do a little bit of everything, King has one specific job in his future: stop the opponent’s best receiver. With names like Julio Jones, Dez Bryant, and A.J. Green on the Packers’ schedule early next season, chances are he’ll be thrown into the fire sooner rather than later.
Having that specific role means expectations boil down to a single metric: did he succeed in covering Jones, Bryant, and Green? It’s a much tougher learning curve. Rather than doing a lot of little things, King is tasked with one big thing.
King may succeed, but it’s more likely that Jones will find his footing faster, if only because his job is a lot smaller.