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Kentucky Football: Jordan Jones bypasses 2018 NFL Draft to return for senior season

The Cats get back their All-SEC linebacker.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 29 Music City Bowl - Kentucky v Northwestern Photo by Jamie Gilliam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Kentucky Wildcats will retain all of their junior defenders who were considering an early entry into the 2018 NFL Draft.

On Thursday, All-SEC linebacker Jordan Jones decided he was returning to UK for his senior season, according to SEC Country. This is very big for UK, as Jones is one of the SEC’s best defenders when healthy.

Jones’ draft stock for 2018 is virtually nonexistent right now after he missed a good stretch of this past season due to a shoulder injury. He did finish with 64 tackles, two sacks and 7.5 tackles for loss, but it was still hard to see him getting picked before Day 3 of the draft (Rounds 4-7).

Jones’ NFL prospects came largely from his All-SEC sophomore season in 2016, when he led the SEC in solo tackles per game and had as many as 19 tackles in a single game. He led the team and ranked third in the SEC in tackles per game with 8.4 (109 total). He even ranked 16th nationally in solo tackles per game (5.7)

Jones was a constant presence in opposing backfields, leading the team with nine quarterback hurries and 15.5 tackles for loss.

Jones joins linebacker Denzil Ware, safety Mike Edwards and linebacker Josh allen to return to Uk for their senior season. As of now, UK is set to have every underclassmen back from last season that logged significant playing time.

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