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Ribs. Thumb. Knee. Hip. Back. Ankle.
The ankle twice Breeland Speaks Color Rush Jersey , in fact.
”Whew! All that?” he asked, sounding a bit incredulous.
Then, with a slight smile and shaking his head, Jones added, ”Long season, man. Long season.”
He’s got a routine to cope with all the aches and pains.
During the week, Jones is often limited in practice or doesn’t even take the field. But by the time the game rolls around, he’s always ready to go.
”He has a real process to do that,” coach Dan Quinn said. ”We’re fortunate that he’s played with injuries and kind of knows the routine of how to do it.”
That will be the case again for Saturday’s NFC divisional playoff game against the top-seeded Philadelphia Eagles .
After sitting out two days of practice with a sore ankle and going through a limited routine Thursday at the final full workout before the game, the star receiver will be in the starting lineup for the 18th consecutive time this season.
”The thing with being injured, it’s really just blocking it out,” Jones said. ”Don’t use it as an excuse.”
Quinn noted that the Falcons usually have an extensive walk-through before each practice, and that’s a session that Jones rarely misses no matter how much he’s hurting. He uses the time to get familiar with the game plan, run some routes and hone his timing with quarterback Matt Ryan.
If Jones is limited during the actual practice, he focuses on plays in which he’ll likely be the primary receiver.
”We try to feature him on plays that are unique for him and Matt to be at full speed,” Quinn said. ”When he goes, it’s these full-speed, aggressive routes. So that helps him as far as the timing goes.”
Jones has been on the injury report eight of the last 10 weeks, along with two other weeks early in the season.
None of the injuries were serious enough to keep him from playing, but they did require plenty of tender loving care to make sure there were no setbacks. That’s why David Bakhtiari Jersey , over the course of the last four months, the injury report has listed him as limited or out of practice more times than he’s fully participated.
Game day is a different story.
”If you say you’re gonna go, go. Don’t bring it up in the middle of the game,” he said. ”We know it hurts. Don’t let your mind be negative. Just stay positive. If something’s hurting or anything like that, I never relay it back to (the sideline). I know it hurts. You don’t want to talk about it and bring that stuff up during the game. If I suit up, I’m going. I’m not saying anything about it.”
A turning point in Jones’ pain threshold came during his sophomore season at Alabama. He broke his left hand in a game, had surgery the next day and was cleared to play the following week.
He wasn’t at his best.
”I was a little timid to catch just because of the pain,” Jones recalled. ”It was messing with me mentally.”
Since then, he’s learned to block out his various injuries.
”It’s gonna hurt,” Jones said. ”But I’m out here. I made the decision to be out here. I don’t care about it hurting.”
Jones’ production dipped this season, part of a wider drop-off under first-year offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian, and there have been a few more drops than previous seasons – most notably, what should have been an easy 39-yard touchdown catch in a November loss at Carolina .
But, overall, it’s been another huge season for Jones. He had 88 catches for 1,444 yards – an average of 90.3 per game – and earned second-team honors on The Associated Press All-Pro team.
He’s usually even better in the playoffs.
Last week, he had nine catches for 94 yards and a touchdown with just under 6 minutes remaining that finished off a 26-13 upset of the Los Angeles Rams in the wild-card round.
”It’s win or go home,” Jones said. ”I’m not a numbers guy. Whatever it takes to get the win.”
Jones also got to do a bit of gloating this week after his alma mater won another national championship with a 26-23 overtime victory over Georgia.
Not that he had any doubt about the outcome. Jones didn’t attend the game, even though it was held at the Falcons’ home stadium, and insisted that he went to bed before halftime.
”I was out Vincent Rey Jersey ,” he said. ”I didn’t learn (the score) until the next morning. I was like, `Oh, that was a good game.”’
Someone noticed he wasn’t wearing any Alabama gear.
No need to rub it in, he quipped.
”When you’re accustomed to things,” Jones said, trying to hold back a smile, ”you don’t brag.”
Jon Gruden would like to see instant replay for officiating disappear. So would Pete Carroll.
The two Super Bowl-winning coaches aren’t fans of video reviews, particularly the slow-motion replays. They also recognize that replay isn’t going away.
”I don’t like instant replay,” Carroll said Tuesday at the NFL meetings. ”I like the game played on the field. The scrutiny of the officials has become so intense, they don’t call the game like they used to, I feel. That didn’t mean I didn’t argue with them any more or any less.
”There are so many reasons why replay has been a positive factor in our game, but I don’t like it,” the Seahawks coach added.
Gruden returned to coaching this year, with the Raiders, after working as the ESPN analyst on Monday night games. So replay was a beneficial tool for him as an announcer, giving him an opportunity to break down the action even more insightfully.
As a coach, he would have no qualms if it was eliminated.
”Let the naked eye make the call,” Gruden said. ”Eliminate instant replay and let the officials call the game.
”Slow motion is the biggest problem with replay. Throw slo-mo out and get back to common sense.”