Jones acknowledges mistakes in open letter
The following are excerpts from an full-page ad purchased by Tennessee Titans cornerback Adam "Pacman" Jones and published in Friday, April 20 print editions of The Tennessean of Nashville:
"At age 23, I never thought my life would come to a crossroads. Over the past two years I have made many mistakes that have affected my family, my team and most importantly our fans."
"In the past few weeks, I have learned a lifetime of lessons. First and foremost, I need to reogranize my priorities. As a grown man and a new father, my first priority is my daughter and family. Second, I have to not only meet the expecations of my coaches, teammates and fans, but exceed them in every respect, on and off the field. The first step in meeting these goals is for me to stop making the poor choices that have put me in this position. ..."
"... While I make no excuses for the past nor do I ask for any sympathy, my attorneys have advised me to appeal the suspension imposed by Commissioner [Roger] Goodell. The basis of the appeal, which will also be heard by Commissioner Goodell, will be to clarify some of the facts and address the unprecidented punishment that was imposed."
"To my family, teammates, coaches and fans, I recognize that I have lost the right to ask for your patience and understanding; however, I will do everything in my power to regain your trust and respect."
In the ad in the sports section of Friday's editions of The Tennessean, Nashville's daily newspaper, Jones told his family, coaches, teammates and Titans fans he must reorganize his priorities.
"In the past few weeks, I have learned a lifetime of lessons," the letter states.
Jones writes of hoping to not only meet, but exceed the expectations people have of him.
"The first step in meeting these goals is for me to stop making the poor choices that have put me in this position," the letter reads.
Jones said he plans to appeal his season-long suspension by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, the same person who will hear that appeal. Cincinnati receiver Chris Henry, a teammate of Jones at West Virginia, also was suspended. But Henry received an eight-game ban.
In his letter, Jones said his attorneys advised him to appeal the suspension to "clarify some of the facts and address the unprecedented punishment that was imposed." Jones first announced his intention of appealing last week.
His attorneys had declined to comment since Jones' announcement he would appeal except to promise that a statement was coming. The appeal must be filed by April 30.
Jones said he plans to re-enroll at West Virginia University and finish his degree. he also plans to fund a scholarship for walk-on football players at WVU.
The sixth pick overall in the 2005 draft and the first defensive player taken that year, Jones has talked with police 10 times since being drafted, and been arrested five times. He has not been convicted of any charge since being drafted.
Goodell left open the chance for Jones' return after the Titans' 10th game if he meets a list of stringent requirements. That included staying out of "adverse" involvement with police and putting together a plan of community service the NFL must approve.
But Las Vegas police want to charge Jones for inciting a fight at a strip club on Feb. 19 that led to a triple shooting. Jones also did not inform the Titans of two arrests in Georgia last year, and a felony obstruction charge for allegedly biting a Fayetteville, Ga., police officer was delayed until May.
Titans owner Bud Adams has said team officials weren't sure they want Jones back unless he changes his behavior and avoids controversy off the field. Titans coach Jeff Fisher didn't want to talk about Jones during a radio interview Friday morning.
"We've moved on. I have moved on," Fisher said.
"The words he wrote came from his heart," his attorney, Manny Arora, told The Tennessean. "I don't think he could describe any better what he felt than what he wrote."
According to The Tennessean's advertising rate card, a full-page black and white ad in a Friday edition has a listed price of $11,535.30. It is not clear if Jones paid that amount, the newspaper reported.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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NFL'S ZERO TOLERANCE
Roger Goodell is cracking down on the player misconduct that's plagued his term as NFL commissioner, suspending Tennessee's Adam "Pacman" Jones (right) for the 2007 season and Cincinnati's Chris Henry and Tank Johnson (left) for eight games. Henry and Johnson have since been reinstated after serving their penalties.
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