Nathan Jones miffed by Melbourne Demons' captaincy move

Melbourne's Nathan Jones has revealed he was initially disappointed by the move to share the Demons' captaincy with young star Jack Viney.

Jones was appointed co-captain with Jack Grimes in 2014 and assumed the role in his own right the following year.

Having led the club through some testing times, Jones admitted he had to be convinced by coach Simon Goodwin of the need to split the job from this season with the club seemingly destined for a period of on-field success.

"I think initially, to be completely honest, I was disappointed and frustrated," Jones told Fox Footy on Monday night.

"At the time, being a super-competitive person, I felt like something was being taken away from me.


"(But) I was really conscious and aware of not letting that influence my professionalism, leadership and training standards or impact on the playing group.

"Since then I was able to sit down with 'Goodi' and discuss how he saw it and why the decision was made and I now see it as a real opportunity.

"I'm confident ... that we form a really strong partnership."

Viney, 22, has long been groomed for leadership at the club, but Jones fully expects to continue in the top job next season.

"I think since that initial 24-48 hours I've been able to digest it and only see it as a positive and an opportunity," the 29-year-old said.

"We can work together as a team, share the load, and bridge the gap between younger and older players.

"I think I'm in a terrific position at this stage with my maturity and experience.

"I think Jack and I working together can only be a positive."

Jones also believes maligned forward Jack Watts has done enough to earn a spot in the Demons' round one side.

Watts spent a good part of the summer in Goodwin's doghouse and wasn't picked in the club's first two pre-season clashes after he failed to meet selection criteria.

The club has been careful not to go into the detail about how Watts drew the ire of his coach and teammates.

But it has become apparent questions were asked about the 25-year-old's focus and desire to improve after he returned from the off-season break.

"I was disappointed (and) 100 per cent I told him that," Jones said.

"The players are held accountable for the condition that they come back in and the standard that they play at.

"I think he's the most maligned and interrogated player in the competition in terms of his performances over his career, which has been quite unfair.

"But from my point of view Jack has accepted the reasons he didn't play early on in the (pre-season series) and I think if you (asked him) he'd be able to articulate that."

Watts has played 137 games since he was taken first overall at the 2008 draft and is widely viewed to have played the best season of his career in 2016.

Melbourne open their 2017 premiership campaign against St Kilda at Etihad Stadium on Saturday.