The high ankle sprain that limited the production of Texas Longhorns safety Brandon Jones throughout his breakout junior season is nearly an ailment of the past.
Jones underwent successful surgery in late February and is now close to full clearance for offseason workouts, head coach Tom Herman told Jeff Howe of Horns247 at the Angelo Football Clinic this week. Along with redshirt sophomore defensive end Max Cummins, who missed the 2018 season due to a knee injury, the two players are entering the last weekend of their respective recovery processes.
“They’re doing almost everything with some slight modifications,” Herman said. “We think by Monday both of those guys will be without any modifications.”
Jones suffered the high ankle sprain on a punt return in the season opener against Maryland when he was dragged down by his jersey collar along the sideline. Ten tackles in that game, including one for a loss, led the team in the loss. As a result of the injury, Jones missed the following game against Tulsa, but returned to once again to lead the team in tackles against USC with nine.
At the team hotel prior to the West Virginia game, however, Jones aggravated his injury and sat out that game and the two following games before returning against for the regular season finale against Kansas. He totaled 11 tackles and a fumble recovery in the final two games before announcing his return for his senior season.
Despite the ankle injury limiting him all season, Jones still finished fourth on the team with 70 tackles and added 5.5 tackles for loss, two interceptions, two fumble recoveries, one quarterback hurry, and one pass breakup.
And although he missed his final spring practice in Austin, Jones should improve his production as a senior if he can stay healthy given what he accomplished last season playing 10 games on an injured ankle that eventually required surgery.