A few hours after losing linebacker Alex Okafor to the New Orleans Saints in free agency, the Arizona Cardinals signed Jarvis Jones to a one-year contract.
With Arizona’s defense featuring two of the best young pass-rushers in the league in Chandler Jones and Markus Golden, who combined for 23.5 sacks last season, Jarvis Jones will likely see a backup role in Arizona.
Jones, 27, might go down as the Steelers’ least productive first-round pick since Troy Edwards in 1999. Jones did some nice things for the defense, particularly against the run, but he had only six sacks in four seasons.
Last season, Jones fell out of the outside linebacker rotation because James Harrison and Bud Dupree were deemed to be more productive. Jones was on notice when the team declined his fifth-year option last offseason, but he remained upbeat when his playing time diminished, saying he wanted to help the team however he could.
In four seasons, Jones recorded 129 tackles, 10 pass deflections, two interceptions and four forced fumbles in 50 games (35 starts).
Jones entered 2017 free agency as an option for a team seeking pass-rush depth but without the promise from four years ago as a top prospect out of Georgia.