Suspended cornerback Adam “Pacman” Jones has been given permission by the Tennessee Titans to pursue a trade, The City Paper has learned.
A league source from one team Jones’ representatives approached at the NFL Combine last weekend confirmed that they had been asked about their interest level in acquiring the cornerback. That team, however, currently has no interest in pursuing Jones.
The level of interest from any other teams that might be interested in Jones is not known at this time. But by granting the request, it signals that Jones’ days with the Titans are likely over.
Jones’ agent and attorney Manny Arora would not confirm what the source indicated.
“The Titans have publicly stated that they are looking at all their options concerning Adam Jones,” Arora said. “If and when the Titans make a final decision, we will test the market on Adam’s behalf.”
Jones has been suspended since last April 10, but would not necessarily have to be reinstated by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell before a trade could be finalized, according to the league office.
“A suspended player can be traded like any other player under contract. (The team is trading the contract, in essence.) The trading period for this year begins on Friday,” league spokesman Greg Aiello said in an e-mail.
The Titans had no comment Wednesday evening, but have consistently deferred to the NFL regarding Jones’ status throughout the suspension. They last issued a statement on Jan. 31 that read in part, “we did inform his representation that, at some point, we would investigate all of our options. We will not comment otherwise until the suspension has ended and we have reached conclusions about his future with the club.”
Jones last week had the review of his case by Goodell and Goodell extended the suspension until sometime before the opening of training camp. He was also barred from the Titans’ facility again as part of last week’s ruling that continued the suspension. That banishment could coincide with the decision to grant permission for Jones to explore trade opportunities.
Jones, who turns 25 in September, had three punt return touchdowns in 2006, and was also a valuable contributor on defense for a Tennessee team that rebounded from an 0-5 start to finish 8-8 that season.
However, he has been arrested six times and has been at or near a dozen police investigations since being drafted by the Titans with the sixth pick overall in the 2005 draft.
Most recently, Jones used an Alford plea to settle a felony obstruction of an officer charge in Fayette County, Ga., stemming from a 2006 arrest he failed to report to the Titans or the NFL.
He also settled a case from last year in Las Vegas in December by pleading to a gross misdemeanor of conspiracy to commit disorderly conduct, after originally being charged with two counts of felony coercion there after a strip club fight escalated into a triple-shooting in the parking lot of the Minxx Gentleman’s Club.
Jones’ agents said last week they would be willing to restructure the cornerback’s contract, if need be, to a more incentive-laden deal if it helps Jones get another chance to play in the NFL either with the Titans or another team.
Arora said last week at the NFL Combine that he would consider asking Goodell to possibly review Jones’ case closer to the time of the April draft to give him a bigger window to be in a team’s plans for 2008.