Aaron Jones Tells Reporters He Wants to Be a ‘Lifelong Packer’
El Pasoans know just how loyal Aaron Jones is.
The Green Bay standout, UTEP all-time leading rusher and Burges has always been proud of those that treated him with respect and in turn, rewards them with his play on the field.
Now, it's his mission to be a Packer for life.
In his first appearance speaking to the media this offseason, Jones spoke on the upcoming season and the implications this year has toward his future. He's on the final year of his rookie contract after completing the best season of his NFL career, where he rushed for 1,084 yards, totaled 474 receiving yards and co-led the NFL with 19 rushing touchdowns.
However, Green Bay drafted rookie AJ Dillon (Boston College) in the second round after the took Aaron Rodgers' potential replacement, Jordan Love, in the first round.
"Whether it's my first year or my last year on a deal, I'm going to be just as motivated," Jones told Packers media members on Wednesday. "It doesn't change just because a contract is on the line for me. I mean, I'm going to continue to work and do everything in my power. I trust my agency and the Packers. With that, I would love to be a lifelong Packer. That's my take on that."
At the NFL combine in February, both sides were open to discussing a contract extension and Jones' agent Chris Cabbott confirmed the discourse between the parties, according to ESPN's Rob Demovsky.
One of the biggest obstacles Jones faces currently is the depreciating running back market. Although Carolina's Christian McCaffrey reset the running back market with a four-year, $64 million extension earlier this offseason, teams are more reluctant than ever to break the bank for a running back. Tailback contract holdouts like Le'Veon Bell and Melvin Gordon are prime examples of how certain running backs have been undervalued.
Also, Green Bay doesn't have a relevant history of paying running backs. The organization hasn't given a second deal to a running back they drafted since James Starks, a sixth-round pick in 2010. They let Eddie Lacy enter free agency in 2016 after being a former 1,000-yard rusher.
"I'm really not looking at the market, I'm just focused on myself," Jones told reporters. "I feel like I can play at a really high level and elite level for a very long time, so I'm just going to do what I can, and hopefully that leads to me being a Packer for life. That's my goal."
Jones' contract this year has him earning $2.13 million. The Packers have key starters like left tackle David Bakhtiari, defensive tackle Kenny Clark, center Corey Linsley and cornerback Kevin King hitting free agency next year, along with Jones' backup running back Jamaal Williams.