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Chris Jones unsure if Saturday will be his last game at Arrowhead

Kansas City’s biggest star on defense could be entering his final days with the Chiefs, but he would rather wait four more games to worry about it.

Kansas City Chiefs v Los Angeles Chargers Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images

As the Kansas City Chiefs prepare to host the Miami Dolphins for a Wild Card round playoff game on Saturday, it is easy to forget the constant changes the looming offseason brings to every NFL team.

Whenever the Chiefs’ season ends, the focus will immediately turn to the future of a franchise legend in defensive tackle Chris Jones. Jones is in the final season of an extension signed in 2020, and he could not come to terms with the team on a new long-term deal last season.

The longest-tenured Chiefs defender recognizes that Saturday could be his last home game as a member of the team, but he is much more focused on what he can do to win a third Super Bowl as a Chief.

“I think it’s more the goal,” Jones stated of where his mind is. “You usually reflect after. After it’s all done, you kind of reflect on what’s the next chapter for you [or] for the team. I try not to think about it. It could be my last game at Arrowhead. Who knows? Most importantly, we’ve got a game to play. We’re trying to make a deep run in these playoffs. If it is my last time, we’ve got to make it worthwhile.”

Cincinnati Bengals v Kansas City Chiefs Photo by Ryan Kang/Getty Images

The game may be worthwhile if the Chiefs continue to play at their season-long level defensively. Jones agrees this year marks the best defense he has played on since joining the Chiefs in 2016.

“Yeah, collectively,” said the pass rusher. “We have a lot of good individuals in this room who have exceeded expectations throughout the year. We still have a ways to go; we have four games to go. We’re going to continue to build on what we put out throughout the regular season and continue to maximize our efforts.”

In recent media comments, quarterback Patrick Mahomes has suggested that — at least for now — he is willing to defer to the defensive strength of the team and not continually force plays, knowing the Chiefs can win without huge scoring totals. Jones denied that the play of the offense should dictate the attitude on his side of the ball.

“It’s a team effort collectively,” Jones explained. “If the offense doesn’t score 40 points the defense has to hold them to under 10. If the offense does score 40 points, we still have to hold them. Whether the offense scores or not it still comes down to the defense still has to hold the [opposing] offense to score less and not give them huge chunk plays. We go into every game with that mind frame as a defense: to hold the offense to minimum yardage, points and whatever else we can.”

In Week 9, the Chiefs defeated the Dolphins 21-14 in an international game played in Germany. Jones cited the Chiefs' inability to defeat either the Denver Broncos or the Las Vegas Raiders in the second meetings this season as a reason for caution as they prepare for a rematch with Miami.

AMFOOT-GER-NFL-DOLPHINS-CHIEFS Photo by KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP via Getty Images

“They’re a good team,” he observed. “You look at the history of us this year, the teams that we played twice this year...that’s the Raiders and the Broncos. So, it’s a point of emphasis this week to make sure we key in on details and be attentive. We have a really, really good team coming in this week, a high scoring offense, a fearless coach and a quarterback with a lot of weapons around him.”

Although the possibility of leaving the Chiefs soon is very real, Jones reiterates that it is currently far from his mind — and that nothing is certain.

“It hasn’t crossed my mind,” he declared. “I’m just thinking about playing the Dolphins. If it is — it is. If it’s not — it’s not. You can’t think about what-ifs. You can’t think about the future because the future tends to change. People change by the day. Feelings change by the day. You’ve just got to roll with the punches in life.

“If they give you lemons, make lemonade. Right now, we’re trying to make lemonade of this. We’ve got an exciting Dolphins team coming. We’re looking forward to it. We made the playoffs. [We] won the AFC West. We’re slowing knocking our goals we wanted to do throughout this year.

“First thing was to win the AFC West and have a home-field game back at Arrowhead. Then, it’s to get the Lamar Hunt trophy again. We’re slowing checking those boxes, and if we continue to do that, we’ll figure this out at the end of the year.”

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