The Cardinals signed Jones to a one-year contract Tuesday, Darren Urban of the team's official site reports. With a pair of standout pass rushers in place at outside linebacker -- Chandler Jones and Markus Golden -- Alex Okafor opted to leave for the Saints in free agency, but the Cardinals quickly scooped up Jones to bolster depth at the position. Jones has some connections to Arizona's coaching staff, namely inside linebacker coach Larry Foote, a former teammate in Pittsburgh, and defensive line coach Brentson Buckner, who shares the same high school with the new Cardinal. Although Jones slightly disappointed as a 2013 first-round pick, he's coming off the most statistically significant season of his career, which included 42 tackles (including one sack), two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, and one interception in 14 games.
Jones is expected to sign with the Cardinals, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports. The former first-round draft pick seems poised for a change of pace as he heads to the desert after spending the first four seasons of his career with the Steelers. The 27-year-old has been bogged down by injuries as he has failed to play a full season so far in his career. In 14 games last season, Jones recorded 41 tackles (29 solo), including one sack.
Jones totaled three tackles (all solo), including a sack in the Steelers' overtime win against the Browns on Sunday. Jones finishes this regular season with 41 tackles (29 solo), including the one sack. He also had two forced fumbles, a fumble recovery and an interception. Pittsburgh will next face the Dolphins in the playoffs for the first time since the 1984 AFC championship game.
Jones (ankle) will play on Sunday against the Jets. Jones went down last week with an ankle issue and was unable to return to the game. However, he managed to escalate his participation in practice throughout the week and is good to go for Week 5.
Jones (ankle) was limited in practice on Thursday. Jones returned to the field on Thursday after injuring his ankle in Sunday's win over the Chiefs. If he is ruled out this week, it is likely that veteran James Harrison will take over as starter. Look for more updates to come as kickoff nears.