Packers safety Josh Jones on Clubhouse Live: 'We have to keep chopping the wood'
Green Bay Packers safety Josh Jones co-hosted Monday's Clubhouse Live, USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin’s live weekly football show. Packers rookie punter JK Scott was Jones’ guest.
Among the topics they touched on were filling roles, moral victories, punting in the NFL and being a holder. The show can be seen live at The Clubhouse Sports Pub & Grill in downtown Appleton or at clubhouselive.com.
Here are select and edited answers from the interview:
Q: You looked energized in Sunday's game against the Los Angeles Rams and finished with a pair of special teams tackles, which tied rookie linebacker Oren Burks for the team high. Are you embracing your role on special teams? Do you feel like you have a new outlook and approach?
Jones: The bye week let me reset and refocus. And also, just being out in California. The sun - just the city, just the whole vibe. California is a beautiful place. To me, it's like a different country. It's so different than just the whole rest of the country. And that's no disrespect to any other state because I love here and I love Florida and I love Michigan and all the places where I spend most of my time in. I never really spent any time in LA or California - period - up until this past weekend. And I loved it. So that was probably part of the reason.
Q: There's no such thing as a moral victory in the NFL. But couldn't you call your performance against the unbeaten Rams - a 29-27 loss on their field - something of a moral victory? Does it do anything for the team's confidence as you prepare for your Week 9 game against the Patriots?
Jones: I don't like the fact that people, when you come close to beating a good team, people say, "Oh, you came close, toe-to-toe, and now you guys can play with anybody." But a team that was like 1-and-whatever they were when we played them - the 49ers - they went toe-to-toe with us. So what does that say?
You win or you lose. I was always taught at a young age, whenever you came close, you don't get rewarded for participation. You don't get rewarded for being the runner-up. There's one winner. There's one king to the throne. And obviously, by their record, (the Rams) were the kings of the NFC, and we didn't defeat them. So we have to keep chopping the wood, and hopefully we'll see them again.
Q: You're seven games into your rookie NFL season. What's going good for you? And what needs some work?
Scott: I like where I'm at. I like how I've kind of progressed into the season. There are a couple of things that we're still tweaking. Just tempo, like getting the ball off quick because we don't want to get a block. So I'm continuing to work those types of things and working direction. Trying to get more efficient placing the ball directionally - stuff like that. Just tying to continue to be more consistent like that. We're just continuing to work.
Q: What's more pressure-packed: Needing to come through with a big punt to flip field position or holding for a game-winning field goal attempt?
Scott: Punting in those types of situations, I'm so used to it. It's really weird. When I get out there, it's pretty easy to just be in your rhythm. But when I'm holding for Mason (Crosby), I'm so focused on trying to make sure that ball is perfect for him. If I mess up a hold, he gets the blame. He missed the kick, but it was on me. I make sure every single week I work my holds, work the proper lean - everything that Mason wants. Because I want him to be successful.