JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - After eight seasons as on of the Jaguars' most prominent players, Maurice Jones-Drew signed Friday with the Oakland Raiders.
The Jaguars allowed Jones-Drew to became an unrestricted free agent earlier this month.
Channel 4 sports director Sam Kouvaris says MJD met with Oakland general manager Reggie McKenzie on Thursday morning, but the deal has been in the works for several weeks.
"A whirlwind going around the league looking for a job. The problem is, he wanted too much money from just about everybody," Kouvaris said. "I'm sure late last night he must have decided he wasn't going to get a better deal anywhere else and he decided to sign in his hometown."
Jones-Drew, 29, was born and raised in the area and lives in the Bay Area in the off-season.
Jones-Drew, a second-round selection by the Jaguars in the 2006 NFL Draft, made the Pro Bowl in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Those were his first three seasons as a starter after sharing carries his first three seasons with long-time starter Fred Taylor.
Jones-Drew rushed for more than 1,000 yards in each of his Pro Bowl seasons, winning the NFL rushing title in 2011 when he rushed for a career-high and franchise-record 1,606 yards and eight touchdowns on a career-high 343 carries.
Jones-Drew finished his Jaguars career with 8,071 yards and 68 touchdowns rushing on 1,804 carries, a 4.5 yards-per-carry average. He is second on the team's all-time rushing list to Taylor, who rushed for 11,271 yards in 11 seasons with the team.
PLAYER PROFILE: Maurice Jones-Drew
Slowed by a foot injury, Jones-Drew averaged just 3.4 yards per carry and rushed for 803 yards and five touchdowns in 15 games last season. He also missed 10 games in 2005 due to a foot injury.
Late Friday, the Jaguars released this statement:
"We want to thank Maurice Jones-Drew for all of his contributions to the Jacksonville Jaguars the past eight years. Maurice's toughness, determination and competitive spirit on the field served as a great example to all of his teammates. Maurice has been one of the great Jaguars and he holds several team records for touchdowns that will remain for a long time. His place in Jaguars history is firmly established and we look forward to honoring him in Jacksonville at the appropriate time in the future.
"Of equal importance, Maurice was a great ambassador in the community and his foundation played a major role in making our city a better place for children. On behalf of the entire Jaguars organization, we wish him the best of luck in Oakland."
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