GREEN BAY (WITI) -- Any player for the Green Bay Packers knows that what he does on Sundays will be what the fans follow -- but one veteran player knows that what he does off the field makes him who he really is.
James Jones has been catching passes in Green Bay since 2007, when Brett Favre was still the team's starting quarterback. Number 89's all-out approach is very familiar to Packers fans.
"If I was to describe myself as a football player, the first word is hungry. I'm hungry. It's my seventh season, and I'm still trying to get better," Jones said.
Jones is still trying to make an impact off the field, too. Jones frequently gives his time to charitable causes, even during the season, whether that's in a big arena in Milwaukee or a TV studio in Green Bay. This year, Jones is working with Feeding America -- the Defeat Hunger Bowl is aimed at helping families who are hungry.
"My mom always told me if your belly is full, and you have a full belly, it makes it a lot easier. You're not just hungry around Christmas time. Kids are hungry year-round -- especially kids who are active these days. It takes a lot of money to keep them full, and it's a year-round issue, so please, please, please encourage others to go and you go and donate year-round," Jones said.
The Packers veteran can empathize with the kids he is now trying to help. The millionaire football player spent part of his childhood homeless.
"I have a picture up in my house of the homeless shelter that I lived in and above it it says 'never forget where you came from.' It just keeps me humble. It helps me to appreciate everything and never take that stuff for granted. When I wake up every morning and go into the stadium and it's all-you-can-eat omelets, waffles, pancakes -- I take none of that for granted," Jones said.
That attitude may partially explain why Jones was still fighting for yards with his team losing by 30 points in the final minutes on Thanksgiving in Detroit.
"To me man, it's all about pride. We all knew that game was over, but I was just telling my teammates -- 'finish with some heart.' We gotta finish the game. We can't just walk off the field and quit right now," Jones said.
That may be the essence of Jones -- on and off the field. He is a product of his experience and he pushes himself and those he influences to make the most of their opportunities.
This is how Jones describes himself as a man:
"Humble. I would say I'm truly humble from the way I grew up. Every day I wake up, I'm truly grateful to see my kids and my family, knowing that they have a roof over their head and they don't have to worry about anything. I am able to provide for them, so I would say I'm humble and grateful," Jones said.
CLICK HERE to learn more about the Feeding America via the organization's website.