Jones birdied four of his last six holes. He also played in the morning.
“We definitely got the good side of the draw,” Jones said.
Despite the cooler weather, the tournament set an attendance record for the third straight day with an estimated crowd of 123,674. Since Monday, an estimated 313,054 people have attended the event. The seven-day record of 538,356 was set in 2008.
It also was expected to be cool over the weekend, with highs in the low-60s.
Jones is a regular at the course, but doesn’t consider that an advantage.
“The golf course is so different tournament week than it is when you play out here regularly,” Jones said. “It’s a lot harder, a lot faster. The greens are a lot quicker. The pins are a lot more tucked out here. So, it’s like a new golf course when you come here for a tournament.”
Brandt Snedeker had the best round of the day, a 64 in the morning to reach 8 under.
“My putting, plain and simple,” Snedeker said. “I hit the ball extra good yesterday and had some of the worst putting I had all year. Today, I kind of did the opposite.”
La Quinta winner Patrick Reed also was 8 under after his second 67. Playing alongside Watson, Reed hit to a foot for a birdie on the par-3 16th stadium hole.
Making a statement about the PGA Tour’s decision to ban caddie races to the green on the rowdy hole, players Robert Garrigus and Morgan Hoffman sprinted to the putting surface. Garrigus made a birdie, and Hoffman had a bogey.
Keegan Bradley followed his opening 66 with an 80, The score was the second-highest of his PGA Tour career, following an 82 last year in the Masters. He made a triple-bogey 8 on No. 3 and had eight bogeys and two birdies.