The Pittsburgh Steelers selected LB Jarvis Jones with the 17th pick of the 2013 NFL Draft. The organization had high hopes and believed Jones would soon become a full-time starter, replacing aging veteran James Harrison in the lineup.
Jones has not lived up to the expectations the Steelers organization once had hoped. In his rookie year, Jones recorded one sack, and 40 tackles. He started 14 games and tried to fill the shoes of Harrison, who left to play for the Cincinnati Bengals. Following the season, Harrison decided to announce his retirement after being released from the Bengals on March 13, 2014.
The Steelers 2014 Season was filled with defensive front injuries, including Jarvis Jones, who was placed on IR after a week 3 matchup against the Carolina Panthers. He ended his 2nd Season with two sacks and 14 tackles, an improvement from his rookie year.
On September 23, 2014 the Steelers decided to call upon the veteran Harrison and get him out of retirement. Harrison joined the team and started 11 games recording 45 tackles and 5 1/2 sacks in Jones' absence.
The 2015 Season for Jones has by far been his best. He recorded 2 sacks, 29 tackles, and an interception. The Steelers upgraded their defensive coordinator to Keith Butler when Dick Lebeau resigned and left for the Tennessee Titans. Butler decided that Jones would be best fit to become more of a drop back LB. He only rushed the QB a handful of times each game, and in a week 13 matchup against the Indianapolis Colts, Jones had his first career interception. The main question going into the offseason is whether or not Jarvis Jones should receive his 5th year option contract. He is scheduled to make over 8 million dollars.
I believe Jarvis Jones has improved greatly from his rookie campaign. Now that Keith Butler is the defensive coordinator, expect Jarvis to continue to be more of a drop back player until James Harrison retires, again. Until then, Bud Dupree can fill the role that Jones should of have occupied in 2013. Dupree's rookie campaign was excellent. He recorded 4 sacks, and 26 tackles, but the question still lingers about Jones' 5th year option.
The Steelers always believe in their players and Jarvis Jones is one of them. If he continues to provide excellent drop back coverage and records a few sacks a season, I believe he will definitely receive his 5th year option on his rookie contract.