By Brent Stecker
Walter Jones is a universally beloved figure in Seattle, and with good reason. The former Seahawks left tackle spent his entire 13-year career in Seattle, during which he played in seven Pro Bowls, was named an All-Pro five times and helped the Seahawks reach their only Super Bowl in 2005.
Jones is on the precipice of even more greatness, having been named a semifinalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame earlier this week, along with other former stars of the past decade like Marvin Harrison, Tim Brown and Michael Strahan.
Pro Football Hall of Fame semifinalist Walter Jones was flagged for holding just nine times in his 13-year career with the Seattle Seahawks. (AP)
Jones’ list of accomplishments stand out even more considering his humble beginnings — as he told 710 ESPN Seattle’s “Wyman, Mike and Moore” on Friday, even during his stellar pro career he stuck with a peculiar workout regimen that began during his days at a small high school in Alabama.
“We didn’t have a lot of weight equipment, so I would push trucks around,” Jones said. “That’s what we was taught when I was in high school. … You put the car in neutral, probably about a 10-percent slope. Once you get it going it was almost like you were pushing a sled. It was something I did in place of doing a lot of the lower back workouts like squats, because every time I used to do squats I would tweak my back. It kept me low and kept me driving after the ball.”
Considering his resume, there’s no use arguing his lack of weight training or notoriousness for skipping preseason workouts and training camp. He was charged with allowing only 23 sacks and flagged for holding just nine times in his entire career.
“The thing that helped me out a lot is I didn’t have to change offenses, and I think you watch the game now and you see a lot of these young guys, they change offensive coordinators every year,” Jones said. “I was in one offense for 10 years. There’s only two ways you can run, right or left, so it made it pretty easy for me to come in and play right off the bat.”
As much as Jones liked playing in the same offense for much of his career, he was just as pleased to have the opportunity to play his entire career in the same city.
“It feels great to end my career in Seattle — to start there and end it there. To be recognized by one team, that feels great, and I love Seattle,” he said. “It was the best opportunity for me to go out there and show my talents in front of a great fan base.”
Now that he’s four years removed from his playing days, Jones is honored that he has a chance to be enshrined with the greats of football history in Canton.
“It’s amazing. Just to be mentioned with those guys, it was a great feeling,” Jones said. “Just to say I did it the right way and I competed on the field the right way.”