Detroit Lions linebacker Christian Jones will start 2020 working through some rehab. On Monday, the veteran defender told a group of reporters that he underwent shoulder surgery this past Friday and will be ready to go after somewhere between two and four months of healing.
Midseason, Jones was given a modest two-year extension by the Lions, locking him up as a contributor through the 2022 season. On Monday, general manager Bob Quinn explained the team’s decision to do so.
“Really good scheme fit for what we do, very versatile,” Quinn said of Jones. “As you guys know, when we’re trying to build the front seven, it’s really hard to find linebackers that can play on the line of scrimmage and off. I think Christian has obviously shown he can do that at a good level.”
In 2019, Jones started all 13 games before suffering his shoulder injury, racking up 51 tackles, 2.0 sacks and four passes defended along the way. While he is a nice versatile piece that can play pretty much any linebacker spot, his overall performance has been below average. If you value PFF’s grading system, Jones finished in the bottom 10 among all NFL linebackers that played at least 20 percent of their team’s snaps in 2019.
Jones wasn’t the only linebacker to deal with an injury this season. The other two starting off-ball linebackers on the team—rookie Jahlani Tavai and middle linebacker Jarrad Davis—both finished the season on injured reserve.
Going forward, Jones still has confidence in the defense and the linebacker corps.
“We have the guys, we just have to keep building the good stuff and eliminate the bad,” Jones said per The Detroit News.