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Dre'Mont Jones dedicated to his defensive line job

Third-year Bronco started coming into his own after returning from knee injury last season.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Dre’Mont Jones was an imposing figure last week as he sat his 280 pound frame in a chair for an interview with 9NEWS. A thoughtful, confident person, you could almost sense his mind whirring before he answered the questions.

It was sunny around midday at the Broncos’ UC Health Training Center headquarters and the smoke had not yet rolled in to cover the distant mountain ridge.

“I think Denver is a beautiful place,’’ said Jones, one of three starting Broncos’ defensive linemen. “Super nice. I love the scenery of the mountains. Being here my third season, I’ve never seen anything like that in Ohio. We don’t have mountains. It’s usually a little foggy because it’s a little more humid. But it’s clear skies you usually see (here). The sun is usually beating down on my face. Pretty hot. I like it.”

To show how dedicated Jones is to his craft, he has yet to make the one to two hour drive to the mountains and check them out up close.

“No, not one time,’’ Jones said. “I haven’t had a chance to. Rookie year I couldn’t get up there because I was trying to get a feel for everything so I was a little nervous about leaving. I always had anxiety about leaving and being late for something.

“Last year, no time because of COVID. And then this year, hopefully, I get a chance to.”

A third-round pick out of Ohio State in 2019, Jones broke through last season after suffering a slight MCL tear in a knee in game 2. He missed four weeks and three games, but became a force upon his return, registering 6.5 sacks in the final 11 games. He doesn’t have any yet this season, although he does work in concert with edge rusher Von Miller, who has all 3.0 Broncos sacks through two games this year. Including one where Jones thought he should have at least got half credit.

“It’s how it goes sometimes,’’ Jones said. “It’s all within the scheme of the game. Sometimes he gets them. Other times I’m going to get him. It’s all about timing. More reps, more games, we got 15 more games to get more sacks.’’

Broncos head coach and defensive play caller Vic Fangio was asked this week about Jones’ performance through the Broncos’ 2-0 start.

“Dre’Mont has been doing a good job, but we all think he’s capable of even playing better,’’ Fangio said. “I think he believes that, too. Hopefully that will happen.”

Those words were relayed to Jones who was then asked what he thought the coach meant by them.

“I’m not sure,’’ he said. “They have their assessment and I have my own assessment of myself. I think I’m playing solid right now. But what they say is very important because they’re my bosses.”

During training camp and the preseason, Broncos players talked about becoming a top 10, maybe even a top 5, defense. Jones is part of a unit that ranks No. 3 in total defense (251.5 yards per game) and No. 5 in scoring defense (13.0 points per game). It’s one thing to talk about it; it’s another to do it.

“Exactly. Confidence and a level of talent,’’ Jones said of the defense’s early improvement. “We loaded up a lot at every position. From our point, and everyone else’s point, it seems like we’re doing a good job. But we still have a bunch of games, you don’t want to shoot the gun too early.”

Jones won’t. Know what he does during his after practice off time? It’s not taking a drive up to the mountains.

“I go home and when we get back on the road we like to watch film,’’ he said. “Like the next day after we get back home from the road, on a Monday. I like to watch film on my own. Give myself a little rundown on everything. What I did, what I can get better at. What I did great at. Opportunities I missed I want to make sure I capitalize the next game. I always do that.”

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