Jones attended University of Southern California (USC) for his freshman year, during which he saw action as a special teams and backup player for the USC Trojans Football team. In the first eight games, he recorded 13 tackles, including 1.5 tackles for loss. During the game against Oregon Jones suffered a neck injury. He was later diagnosed with spinal stenosis and the USC medical staff would not clear him to play for the team again.
When the USC medical staff would not allow Jones to practice in the spring of 2010, Jones asked for and was granted a release to transfer. His high school coach contacted Georgia, Auburn, and Florida State to discuss the possibility with the teams' coaches. After meeting with Georgia Bulldogs defensive coordinator Todd Grantham, Jones underwent medical testing by the Georgia staff and was cleared to play football for the University of Georgia. He would have to redshirt during the 2010 season in compliance with NCAA transfer rules.
Jones started every game in the 2011 season, recording a career high 4 sacks against Florida on October 29. He posted 70 total tackles including 19.5 for a loss, 13.5 sacks (which led the SEC), 2 forced fumbles and 26 quarterback hurries.
In 12 games, Jones recorded 85 tackles, 24 tackles-for-loss, 14.5 sacks, 1 interception, 7 forced fumbles, and 2 fumbles recovered. He missed games against Kentucky and Florida Atlantic. He played an integral role in wins over Missouri and Florida. So far Jones has been named an AFCA First Team All-American, the Southeastern Conference Defensive Player of the Year by the Associated Press and voted The 2012 Premier Player of College Football by sports fans.
On April 25, 2013, Jones was selected with the 17th overall pick by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 2013 NFL Draft. He wears jersey No. 95 for the team. Throughout the early part of the season, he has been in regular rotation with Jason Worilds at right outside line backer. His first sack in the NFL was recorded on November 10, 2013 against the Buffalo Bills. During his rookie season of 2013, Jones played in 14 games making 40 tackles, 4 passes defended, and 1 sack.