Green Bay Packers: Ted Thompson’s top 30 draft picks of all-time
13. James Jones (Ray’s pick)
If there was one player who was under appreciated as a wide receiver during the first seven years he was in Green Bay, it was James Jones – the number three player on the team’s depth chart through his entire career in Packers News.
That was until 2015 when he came back to help the Packers when Jordy Nelson was lost for the season with a knee injury.
Though the Packers decided this offseason that Jones would not be coming back in 2016, he has been one of the best receivers the Packers have had on their roster for nearly the past decade.
James Jones thrived at the position, though everyone knew that he could have been a number one receiver on many teams across the league.
During his time in Green Bay, Jones missed only six games – four in his sophomore season and two in 2013.
Despite the fact that he was the third receiver on the field and the time he lost through injury, he still accounted for thousands of yards of total offense and dozens of touchdowns.
Jones, who was drafted by the Packers in the third round (78th overall) of the 2007 NFL Draft, had his best years in 2012 and 2013 when he was targeted 98 times and caught 64 balls for 784 yards in 2012, followed by 59 catches (93 targets) for 817 yards in ’13.
His 14 touchdowns in 2012 led the team and the league.
Though he was seen as a receiver who dropped balls early in his career, he cleaned that up and became the sure-handed receiver that Aaron Rodgers loved to go to in big moments of big games.
In all, he played in 120 games in Packers News, caught 310 balls for 4,305 (13.9-yard average) and scored 37 touchdowns.
Following the 2013 season the Oakland Raiders signed him in free agency, where he became their number one receiver. He played in all 16 games, caught 73 balls for 666 yards (9.1-yard average) and scored six touchdowns.
When the Packers came calling at the end of the preseason in 2015, Jones responded.
He played in all 16 games last season, catching 50 of the 99 balls thrown his way for 890 yards (17.8-yard average), and eight touchdowns.
He came through when the Packers needed him most.
Classy guy, great draft pick, great teammate. James Jones may have been undervalued while a Green Bay Packer, but his contributions, especially in helping the Packers to the 2010 Super Bowl title, won’t soon be forgotten.
Next: No. 13 (Freddie's pick)