Byron Jones will compete with Dallas Cowboys teammates Travis Frederick, Kavon Frazier and Geoff Swaim in “Feuding over Feeding” at City Works in Frisco on Friday.
The players are partnering with TangoTab to host a “Feed The City” event around the North Texas area to see who can feed the most people in need at their event.
Jones said there will be some trash talking with his teammates, but their focus is to collect as much food as possible to help tackle the hunger problem in North Texas.
“To be part of something like this and to give back is exciting,” Jones said Tuesday. “I have been blessed. We have been blessed. To have an opportunity share that blessing with other people that is what I am here for.”
Jones is also excited about the Cowboys decision to move him from safety to cornerback for the 2018 season.
After starting at safety the past two years, the Cowboys have decided cornerback is his optimal position and he agrees.
“I am looking forward to the move,” Jones said. “It’s a good move. It fits my skill set.”
That the Cowboys are just finding out the best position for Jones after using a first-round pick on him in 2015 would seem frustrating.
He played cornerback, safety and nickel as a rookie before spending the past two seasons exclusively at safety. His forte has been covering big tight ends and big receivers.
Jones started every game last season, being credited with 74 tackles, four tackles for loss, three QB pressures, six pass deflections and one interception returned for a touchdown.
But a plan to use him as a center fielder never materialized and he played mainly in the box.
While Jones played 910 of 1,045 defensive snaps (87.08 percent), the most of any defender, supporting the run was not his forte. He split snaps on run downs at safety with Frazier late in the season.
Jones believes the move to cornerback will get him back to doing what he does best. It’s the position he played his last two years in college at Connecticut.
But his versatility of being able to play both positions proved to be too tempting to the Cowboys early on.
“When I watch the film and I see my coverage skills against the tight ends, I can translate that over to cover receivers,” Jones said. “I wish had had more time to develop at the position before moving to safety.”
Jones said there is no frustration. And he was honored to play in the Cowboys secondary the past three years.
But he is now looking forward to his opportunity at cornerback.
He has spoken with secondary coach Kris Richard a few times. He understands Richard’s preference for big cornerbacks dating back to his days with the Seattle Seahawks and believes he fits the build.
Vice president Stephen Jones had a similar opinion when discussing Jones’ move to cornerback at the NFL Scouting Combine two weeks ago.
“Obviously, Kris — his background in Seattle points to big corners. But I’d say we like big corners, too, if you can find them,” Stephen Jones said. “I just think those are all things that we’ll continue to look at. I think Byron Jones is more born out of, we just think that may be where he plays better, versus safety.”
Asked if not knowing what they have in Byron Jones after three years is disappointing, Stephen Jones said, “No, because I think he’s been effective for us. I think he’s one of the best in the business at covering tight ends, and that’s a big deal in our game right now. Everybody’s got a good one that they’re trying to get the ball to, and I’d be hard pressed to find someone who can cover them better than he can.
“I think he’s been efficient, it’s just finding his optimal spot.”
The Cowboys still have to make a decision on Byron Jones’ fifth-year option by May 3. He is currently in the the final year of his rookie contract. If they pick up the fifth-year option for 2019, it would give them another year to develop and groom him at cornerback at the affordable safety price tag of $6 million.