Jaguars running back Maurice Jones-Drew gets past Texans defensive back… (Phil Coale / Associated…)
Rumors that Maurice Jones-Drew will report to camp this weekend have given Jacksonville Jaguars fans, as well as Fantasy Football owners, something to look forward to this holiday.
The multiple-threat running back, who led the NFL in rushing last season with 1,606 yards, has been holding out for a new contract. Jaguars owner Shad Khan took a hard line and refused to renegotiate a five-year, $31-million deal that Jones-Drew signed in 2009.
Jaguars Coach Mike Mularkey said that he's heard the rumors of Jones-Drew returning to the team, "but nothing from people that need to tell me its firm. I have not heard from Maurice.”
Speculation has run rampant that Jones-Drew will report this weekend so he will be eligible to receive his salary this season, when he's due to make $9.1 million.
Jones-Drew's holdout has reached 38 days, tying the former UCLA star with receiver Jimmy Smith in 2002 for the longest in Jaguars history. His fines have reached $1.2 million.
Should Jones-Drew return, Mularkey is ready to move forward but he claims not to have given it much thought.
“That’s hasn’t come up, that discussion," said Mularkey, who named Rashad Jennings as the starting running back for Week 1. "We’ve got to get him in first. He’s got to come in. We’’ll go from there. That has not been addressed yet."
Wire service and Internet reports contributed to this story.
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