Braxton Jones hones his tackle skills
One of the biggest adjustments for Jones has been the pace of professional play. He often has former Southern Utah teammates asking how different the speed is. Jones said the contrast between the FCS program and the NFL is vast.
“I have a long way to go, but I understand how fast it actually is, even with linebackers and all that,” Jones said. “I have a better understanding of speed, but I could do much better to implement it in my game. And that’s another thing too, it doesn’t always go fast, fast, fast. You have to keep pace. space a little more. You can’t fly into anything because they’re so fast they’ll come right under you. It’s a happy medium.
Playing for a smaller football program, Jones often had uncertainty about his chances of making the league. In his sophomore year, he started seeing his name on some lists and hearing his name in conversations about the NFL.
It wasn’t until his junior or senior year that he felt confident about the likelihood of being drafted or at least signed by a team. Still, none of the speculation, listings or conversations meant anything until Jones landed a league berth.
During the four years of college, Jones always focused on improving every day and worked hard enough to give himself a shot at success as a professional.
“Coming from southern Utah, not many people get away with it,” Jones said. “And being in the position that I’m in, I’m beyond grateful. I’m just thrilled to be here every day and that’s why I take that approach when I come here and talk to you, just trying to improve myself every day. . Trying to be sharper every day and doing whatever I can to help the team. The most important thing is just to be grateful to be here. Obviously that’s not It’s not easy to be here, not everyone is here. But it’s amazing.”