Buffalo Bills running back and former Eastern Washington star Taiwan Jones’ good deeds often go unnoticed.
Such is the life of a 10-year NFL veteran who primarily sees the field on kickoff and punt coverage.
But Jones, who had one tackle in the Bills’ 27-24 playoff win over the Indianapolis Colts on Saturday, committed an act of kindness that garnered much attention this week.
Jones gave Valentino Dixon – a longtime Bills fan who spent 27 years in prison for a murder conviction that was overturned in 2018 – tickets to Saturday’s wild-card game, which allowed 6,700 spectators after getting clearance from the state of New York.
Dixon was the focus of a documentary produced by a group of Georgetown University students that ultimately led to the man’s exoneration.
“I was already kind of emotional just with everything going on in the world,” Jones told ESPN. “I was reaching out to different organizations within Buffalo to see what I could do to make a difference. When I first read his story, man, it was touching and heartbreaking. I definitely wanted to do something for him.”
A year ago this weekend, Jones was also in the spotlight.
Jones, then a member of the Houston Texans, caught a short pass from a scrambling Deshaun Watson in overtime in the wild-card round against his current team, Buffalo, before bursting for 25 yards to get near the goal line, setting up a winning field goal.
Jones, an All-American running back in college, had 2,345 all-purpose yards as a junior at EWU in 2010 despite missing multiple games due to injury. He skipped his senior season and was drafted in the fourth round by the Oakland Raiders.
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