Aaron Ross apologizes for calling year with Jags a 'paid vacation'

By Ryan Wilson | CBSSports.com

Ross is pumped about being back in New York. (Getty Images)
Cornerback Aaron Ross is back with the Giants -- where he spent the first five years of his career -- after a one-season stopover in Jacksonville in 2012. Or, as Ross put it Friday, "a nice paid vacation to Florida."

Hours later, Ross was on a phone clarifying himself.

"Jacksonville treated me and my wife with the utmost respect and I really appreciated what they did for me and did for us," Ross told ESPNNewYork.com. "The only reason I said the vacation thing is because it was such a short turnaround for me to (come) back home with the Giants, it felt like (being away on) a vacation. I definitely didn't mean any harm to Jacksonviile city or the fans or disrespect to the organization. I have the utmost respect for that organization."

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Ross signed a three-year, $9.75 deal with the Jags last offseason but was released last month after starting nine games in 2012 and finishing with just three passes defended and no interceptions.

The full comment that landed Ross in trouble came during an appearance on NFL Network's NFL AM.

"It was a great experience, a great learning experience," he said. "I don't regret the decision I made. It was a nice paid vacation to Florida, so I definitely wouldn't take back the decision. I definitely wouldn't."

But he later told ESPN that wasn't what he really meant.

"I didn't mean literally on vacation as far as not working hard or taking advantage of the Jacksonville nation," he said while thanking the organization for allowing him to travel to last summer's London Olympics to watch his wife compete. “They allowed me to go to the Olympics which most organizations wouldn't even consider that an option. I have no complaints ... no regrets. If I had to make the decision again, I would definitely (sign that free agent deal with) Jacksonville."

This is slightly different than what he said after he re-signed with the Giants.

"It's great to be back," Ross said in March. "Words can't explain. … From the very start, I talked to [general manager Jerry Reese] when I signed with the Jags. I told him, ‘I have a three-year contract and as soon as it's over, I'll be ready to come back home.'”

As it stands, everybody's happy: The Giants are glad to have Ross and, presumably, the Jags are glad to be rid of him.

 
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