WHEN Nathan Jones runs out onto the MCG this Saturday night, he will become just the second man to pull on the Melbourne guernsey 300 times.

Joining club champion David Neitz in the rare club, Jones’ accolades throughout his 16-year career are unrivalled.

The 33-year-old is a former skipper, a three-time Best and Fairest winner, and the heart and soul of the club.

He’s endured some of the toughest times the game could offer, being a part of a losing side on 198 occasions – the fifth most of any player in the history of the league.

And while he hasn’t had the on-field success he deserves, he has achieved some incredible individual feats along the journey.

Take a closer look at his career below, with a year-by-year look at his rise for the Demons.


Selected with pick No.12 in the 2005 National Draft.


Games: 8

Debuted in a Round 17 win against the Western Bulldogs.

Played under his first senior coach, Neale Daniher.

Received a Rising Star nomination for his 25-disposal effort against North Melbourne, four games into his career.

In just his seventh match, Jones played in a winning Elimination Final against the Saints.

Following Melbourne’s Semi-Final loss to Fremantle, Jones returned to Sandringham and played in a VFL premiership.


Games: 21

Missed just one game with an ankle injury.

Daniher departed Melbourne, with Mark Riley stepping in as coach for the last nine games of the season.

Received a second career Rising Star nomination after collecting 18 disposals and booting two goals against Port Adelaide.

Jones went on to come third in the 2007 Rising Star Award, placing behind Joel Selwood and Scott Pendlebury.

At just 19 years of age, Jones finished second behind James McDonald in the club’s Best and Fairest Award.


Games: 21

Played 21 games for the second consecutive year, being left out of the side in Round 18.

Registered 30 disposals in a game for the first time in his career, against the Eagles in Round 20.

Dean Bailey took on senior coach duties, becoming Jones’ third leader in as many years.

Chalked up game No.50 in the final round of the season, with the Demons falling to Richmond at the MCG.


Games: 20

Added 20 games to his tally after missing Rounds 12 and 20 with illness.

Averaged 22 disposals per game – the highest return in his career to date.

Demons finished bottom of the ladder for a second consecutive season, with Jones managing just seven wins in his past 41 games.

Jones recorded his second top-five finish in the club’s Best and Fairest, placing fifth.


Games: 22

Signed a two-year contract extension with the club after playing every game of the season for the first time in his career.


Games: 22

Brad Green was named the Melbourne captain, with Jones stepping into the leadership group.

Reached his 100th game milestone in Round 9, as the Dees lost to the Saints.

Dean Bailey was sacked as coach, with interim Todd Viney stepping in.

Jones placed fourth in the club’s Best and Fairest Award.



Mark Neeld became Jones’ fifth senior coach in seven seasons.

After averaging 25 disposals per game and slotting 16 goals, Jones claimed his first Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy.


Games: 22

Jones took a step up to the vice-captaincy, under Jack Trengove and Jack Grimes.

Game No.150 came against the Cats in Round 16, but he suffered another milestone loss.

Neil Craig was named caretaker coach for Mark Neeld as the Demons finished 17th on the ladder.

Jones went back-to-back at the club’s Best and Fairest, winning the Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy once again.


Games: 22

Jones was promoted to co-captain, leading the Dees alongside Grimes.

Paul Roos stepped in to become Jones’ seventh senior coach in nine years.

Recorded a career-high 38 disposals against the Saints in the season opener.

Averaged 28 disposals per game and won his third successive Keith ‘Bluey’ Truscott Memorial Trophy.


Games: 22

Jones was named the club’s sole captain for the first time.

Another forgettable milestone match, with Jones getting subbed out of his 200th game after an ankle injury. The Demons went on to lose to Fremantle at Subiaco Oval.

Placed fifth in the Best and Fairest Award, with Bernie Vince taking it home.

Named a life-member of the Melbourne Football Club and re-signed until the end of 2019.


Games: 22

Racked up a career-high 617 disposals for the season.

Came runner-up to Jack Viney in the Best and Fairest Award.

Revealed post-season that he was playing through injury – suffering from a prolapsed disc in his neck.


Games: 16

Viney joined him as co-captain.

Melbourne’s succession plan saw Simon Goodwin take the senior job, with Jones playing under his eighth coach.

After 110 games in a row, Jones missed six matches with a quad injury.

Finished equal-third in the Best and Fairest alongside Jordan Lewis.


Games: 25

Became the ninth Melbourne player to register 250 games.

For the first time in his career, Jones celebrated a win in his milestone, defeating the Dogs at Marvel Stadium.

After a 12-year drought, Jones played in his second finals campaign.

Placed fourth in the Best and Fairest, as Max Gawn claimed the win.


Games: 22

At the conclusion of the season, Jones announced to the playing group he would be stepping aside as captain.


Games: 8

In a difficult year for all, Jones played eight out of the 17 games, missing with both injury and form.


Games: 5*

Jones is set to become the 92nd AFL/VFL player to play 300 senior games this Saturday night.