Chandler Jones needs a sidekick. He needs another pass-rushing force flanked on the opposite wing. He needs someone who will bring the heat from the left, while he storms in from the right. Datone Jones has the name, and also has the game. The defensive end from UCLA is a first-round prospect the Patriots could snag at No. 29 in tomorrow night’s NFL draft. If they want a defense with twin towers coming off the edge, Datone Jones fits the profile. With 6-foot-5, 260-pound Chandler, and 6-4, 283-pound Datone, the Pats would have legitimate pass-rushing Joneses on both sides of their 4-3 base defense. They could have a pair of bookends who can wreak havoc and disrupt opposing quarterbacks. UCLA’s Jones figures to be the type of player and force that Jermaine Cunningham has never quite become. He’s the mirror image of Chandler Jones. Datone Jones can also flip to playing a 3-4 defensive end if the need arises, so he has system versatility. During his senior year, Datone Jones was an explosive player who consistently ripped off blocks and got to the quarterback. He had his best year playing for Jim Mora, who took over the head coaching job for the Bruins. Last week, Jones said that he felt staying at UCLA for his senior year and getting the benefit of a coach with NFL experience helped him in many ways. ‘‘I think he really helped me develop a pro mindset,” Jones said of Mora. “I feel like I almost have a unique advantage through this process because I’ve had the opportunity to have an NFL head coach. A lot of the stuff he talked about, a lot of the stuff he did was on the pro level. So having him around helped me a lot.’’ Then there’s what Jones brings to the table on his own. First and foremost, he is an athlete. An accomplished high school point guard with NBA hopes, he eventually had to choose between basketball and football. His overwhelming abilities with regard to the latter, along with an avalanche of scholarship offers, dictated his choice. Second, he’s got a football brain. He’s able to break down plays, whether it’s from his position or someone else’s. That’s a plus if Bill Belichick is your coach. Third, he’s tough-minded. He went to Compton High School, located in a rough neighborhood south of Los Angeles. He’s seen and survived plenty.
UCLA DE Datone Jones would be nice bookend
Boston Herald | Apr 24