The Oakland Raiders have signed CB Taiwan Jones to a three-year contract extension, General Manager Reggie McKenzie announced Monday. Jones, who had one year remaining on his rookie agreement, is now under contract with the Raiders through 2017.
"I was excited when they came to me about the extension. It is definitely a blessing for a local kid to be part of the Raiders' turnaround. I've been an underdog all my life, so I think it's very fitting for me to remain here. I'm definitely excited about it.
"It's a blessing. It's rare to see and to know that my local team wants me to stay home, and it's just a blessing. I'm glad to be part of it, happy to remain here and there are big things coming that I am happy to be part of it. I feel good about next year. Obviously, I was able to do a lot of good things on special teams last year. Unfortunately, I didn't make the Pro Bowl last year, but that is something I'm shooting for this year."
Jones was originally selected by Oakland in the fourth round (125th overall) of the 2011 NFL Draft out of Eastern Washington as a running back, a position he played in his first two NFL seasons. Jones switched to cornerback, his original position in college, prior to the 2013 season, while also seeing time on offense when the Raiders' offensive backfield was decimated by injury. In addition to those roles, the 6-foot, 197-pounder has developed into one of the NFL's best special teams players and a key contributor on all special teams units for Oakland. The 25-year-old's career totals include 117 rushing yards on 27 attempts (4.3 avg.), 91 receiving yards on six receptions (15.2 avg.), 810 kickoff return yards on 36 returns (22.5 avg.), 32 special teams tackles and two fumble recoveries.
A standout performer at Eastern Washington, Jones finished his career as the school's fourth-leading rusher with 2,995 rushing yards on 383 carries and 29 touchdowns. He was named the 2010 Big Sky Conference Offensive Player of the Year in his junior year and helped the Eagles capture the NCAA FCS national championship that season.
In addition to his on-field performance, the product of Deer Valley High School in Antioch, Calif., is one of the Raiders' most active participants in the community. The Bay Area native has participated in numerous events throughout his tenure with the Raiders, including the Annual United Way Hometown Huddle, Holiday Heroes, the launching of We Day California, NFL Play 60 football camps and visits to local elementary schools.