Pacman starts in place of injured Newman vs. Browns

Updated: September 7, 2008, 9:37 PM ET
Associated Press

CLEVELAND -- The only trouble Adam "Pacman" Jones got into was a pass interference call.

The Dallas cornerback started Sunday in place of the injured Terence Newman and helped the Cowboys to an easy 28-10 win over the Cleveland Browns.

Jones, who missed all of last season while under suspension, had been counting the days to his return to the field.

"I've been waiting on this day for about 600 days," said Jones, referring to his last game on Dec. 31, 2006. "It was real emotional, but that's what I live for. It was great. I enjoyed myself. I have no regrets. I'm smiling from ear to ear."

Jones was recently reinstated by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell after serving a 17-month suspension for numerous off-field problems, including six arrests and his connection to a shooting at a Las Vegas strip club.

He quietly helped the Cowboys hold down the Browns' high-scoring offense. His only transgression was tackling wide receiver Braylon Edwards in the end zone, drawing a flag and setting up the Browns' only touchdown.

"I gave up no big plays. I didn't miss no tackles," Jones said. "I ran around. I had fun. That's what it's about. I got the one pass interference -- as long as he didn't score the touchdown I'd rather get it on the 1-yard line and let them work to get it in."

Jones also returned two punts for 8 yards -- he fumbled and recovered the second one -- and nearly picked off a pass and returned it for a touchdown.

"I give myself probably about a C+," he said.

Jones was involved in a dozen incidents requiring police intervention since the Titans made him a first-round draft pick in 2005.

He has stayed clean since he was traded from Tennessee to Dallas in April, and has vowed to stay out of strip clubs and to spend more time with his family. He was allowed to start practicing with the Cowboys in June, but Goodell didn't give Jones full clearance until Aug. 28.

Jones took the starting assignment in stride.

"It's always good to get out there with the first team and let them know I'm someone they can count on," Jones said.

It's unclear who will start next week at cornerback when Dallas plays the Philadelphia Eagles on Monday night.

Newman missed nearly all of training camp, and the entire preseason, while dealing with a slightly torn groin muscle. The Pro Bowler had limited participation in practice last week.


Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press

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