clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Introducing new Raiders WR James Jones

New, comments

There are few athletes I respect more than James Jones, and it is easy to see why. Living homeless didn't break him, not having Aaron Rodgers throwing to him wont either.

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
James Jones is one hell of a person. Notice the chosen word of "person" instead of athlete, it is intentional. James is a man of true strength and decency that just so happens to be really good at football, and anybody who has come across him can attest to those words.

Jones is coming to the Oakland Raiders, and he is bringing with him an impressive skill set as a receiver and a gluttony of intangibles. There are few people that work as hard as James does, he works his routes to get open and he knows how to fight for the ball. He knows all about fighting and not giving up, it is what he did all his life.

James Jones spent most of his childhood as a homeless child to a transient mother. He didn't know what life was like in a stable home until he was 15 years old and starting highschool. He chose to stay with his mom despite the tough life that came along with it up until that age because he had so much love for her that he refused to leave her alone. She meant more than anything to him.

Instead of staying with his father in Fresno or his grandmother in San Jose, James Jones chose to stay with his mother. Each shelther they stayed in only allowed them to stay for 90 days at a time, so he spent a lot of time moving from place to place in his youth. It wasn't easy, but his love for his mom always kept him with her.

Can you imagine never having a home as a child? To always be on the move and always be hungry, believing in a better life but not being able to attain it? Wondering why you had to live this way and others did not? Some of you know that life all to well and it is enough to break anybody. It didn't break James though, it only made him stronger and more determined for greatness.

James may not have had a stable home but he learned to love life anyway. By the time he got to highschool he did move in with his grandma where he finally got to stay in one place. He spent all four years at the same highschool, something he never thought would be possible.

His mom managed to stay near him through those years too, never missing a game of his in football or in basketball. They never let life separate them, always managing to keep each other close.

After four years of college at San Jose St James was selected in the 3rd round of the NFL draft, what do you think he cared about most? The same thing that still moves him to this day.

"Man, that almost brings tears to my eyes just to be able to provide for her, bless her with anything she needs," he told Pam Oliver in 2011. "She doesn’t have to worry about nothing. She has a roof over her head, she doesn’t have to worry about moving, or to worry about three-month notice. That’s the best feeling in the world.”

His dreams came true that day the Packers drafted him, but they weren't about football. They were about providing for his family and finally having the utmost stability that he hadn't know as a child. It was about making sure his mother never had to worry about her home again, and making sure his children never had to worry the first time.

The Raiders are getting a steal with James. They are going to be very happy they decided to offer him a deal. Ever since Jones got into the NFL he has worked to better himself as a player and better the lives of anybody he can help. Ask any of the homeless shelters in Milwaukee or Green Bay what they think of Mr. Jones.

The answer is simple; James Jones is a champion. He is a champion football player and he is a champion for the needy. He is widely known in Wisconsin for his charity work besides his great play on the field and now James has the chance to help Northern California where he found his first sense of stability.

This is a man who never forgot where he came from, and now he has come home again. He will wear the Silver and Black well, and we will be proud that he is an Oakland Raider. He will be a fan favorite soon, this is just an introduction to him.

He is leaving Green Bay where he played with great quarterbacks all his career, but that just means he now has a chance to prove just how good he really can be. It isn't going to be the hardest thing he has ever experienced, its just going to be another chance for him to show his determination and heart. Judging from what he has already overcome I don't think it would be wise to bet against him