Ronald Jones will not get the opportunity to play for the Cowboys. With his PED suspension having been served, the veteran back was released on Monday, per a team announcement.
Jones was issued a two-game ban in July, meaning he was prevented from taking the field in Dallas until this point. Given his tenuous hold on a roster spot, it was uncertain if he would have made the team’s final 53-man roster without the suspension in place. The Cowboys are prepared to move forward with their other backfield options in lieu of giving Jones a look in regular season action.
The 26-year-old inked a one-year Cowboys pact in his latest bid to find a more permanent home. Jones began his career in Tampa Bay, but he never found himself as the undisputed lead back during his time with the Buccaneers. He spent 2022 in Kansas City, a team which kept him in place all the way through the Super Bowl but gave him only 18 combined carries between the regular and postseason.
With Ezekiel Elliott‘s release, the Cowboys turned the RB1 role over to Tony Pollard on a full-time basis. The latter – who is playing on the $10.1MM franchise tag in 2023 – has logged a league-leading 48 touches so far, leaving his status on the depth chart unquestioned. Dallas also has former UDFA Rico Dowdle and sixth-round rookie Deuce Vaughn as backups, and their collective performances have made Jones expendable.
Having played sparingly last season and missed game action to begin the 2023 campaign, it will be interesting to see how much of a market Jones generates now that he is free to sign with any team. Other veteran backs – including, most notably, Kareem Hunt – are also unsigned, so Jones’ stay on the open market may be a lengthy one and his next deal will, like his Cowboys one, no doubt be a low-cost flier.