Last training camp I grabbed Jacoby Jones as he walked off the practice field. I wanted to talk to him about his new contract. The Texans had just signed him for 10.5 million over three years, and there seemed to be some meaning in that. Kind of a "Just so we're clear on this, we're expecting a 10 million receiver out of you" sort of message.
I asked him if he felt that pressure.
"It's only pressure," he said, "if you let it be pressure."
That was the first time I heard him say it, but it wouldn't be the last. When Andre Johnson got hurt, there Jones was again, in the locker room, saying that pressure could only exist if you believe in it, like the monster under the bed.
To Jacoby Jones, pressure is a bad thing. It is to be avoided. And not only should it be avoided, it can be willed out of existence.
Jones never felt the pressure, and that was the problem.
Unable to get anything for him in the trade market, the Texans outright released Jones Tuesday, 10 months into that ...