Philadelphia, PA (CBS12) — Chris T Jones took Philadelphia by storm in 1996. The receiver from Cardinal Newman High School and the University of Miami seemed to be on the path of to be a superstar wide receiver.
But it all fell apart for him. Now. instead of being an NFL legend, he’s helping others.. whose lives are falling apart
Jones works as a supervisor for Behavioral Heath of the Palm Beaches,a drug rehabilitation program, helping those that have lost their way get back on their feet. It’s a process that the West Palm Beach native has lived through himself.
In 1996, Jones was one of the best receivers in the NFL, and was poised to sign a big contract to stay with the Philadelphia Eagles. One day during the preseason he was offered a 5 year, 15 million dollar contract.
I turned it down that day,” says Jones. “And that evening, we were playing the Baltimore Ravens, and I got tackled (and injured my knee), and I didn’t even have to be in there.
Jones never got his big contract, and his knee never was the same. Then another similar hit two preseasons later ended his NFL career.
“I had days that I went into depression from the drinking, abusing the medication, hanging out with the wrong crowd.”
But over time, Jones found a way to deal with that depression. “You ask yourself why me? But I’m a faith based individual, and I turned to God, and I guess that’s not my calling.”
Jones has found that calling now. He may not have been able to pick himself off that Veterans Field turf, but now he’s helping to pick up those that have hit rock bottom. A much more admirable feat than scoring touchdowns.
Despite playing just one full season in the NFL, Chris T. Jones remains in the NFL record books. He and receiver Irving Fryar combined for 158 catches, which remains tops in Eagles history for a receiving tandem.