Well, Walter Jones appears headed toward retirement, according to his latest tweet on Sunday.
Although the latest news appears a little more conclusive than his previous announcement during the season, it still seems a bit odd that he would choose to make this announcement on Super Bowl Sunday.
Neither the Seahawks or Jones agent, Roosevelt Barnes, have confirmed that Jones, 36, is indeed retiring.
However, on one front the timing does make some sense, after Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll made it a point to address the issue of whether or not Jones will return during a radio interview last week on KJR.
“One of the big issues is Walter Jones, and his ability to return or not return,” said Carroll, when asked about things his team needed to do to get better in 2010. “He has been a great player in this organization for years. And not having him available last year made a difference. And right now we don’t know how he’s going to be able to recuperate, with his injury and all.
“I talked to Walter and he’s doing everything he can and we’ll see in time where he stands. But that’s an issue. And there’s a little bit of a ripple effect, moving guys around to fill that left tackle spot. It’s a skill position in the NFL, and one that’s really critical. So we have to see what we can do there.”
Of course, we’ve been down this road before. Early last season Jones implied through his twitter account that he might be contemplating retirement. However, after spending the season on the injured reserve list and training down in Florida, Jones indicated at the end of the season that he was hopeful he could return to the field this year.
Money also will play a factor in whether Jones returns this season. He’s due $7.3 million in 2010, and Carroll needs to determine if Jones can come back and play at a high level again at left tackle, or if the team needs to continue and experiment with Sean Locklear at that position or draft someone to groom as the left tackle of the future.
Locklear is due to make $4.85 million in 2010.