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#pounditFriday, December 3, 2021

Articles tagged: Julio Jones

This team is reportedly viewed as the frontrunner for Julio Jones

Julio Jones

It does not appear that things are any closer to a Julio Jones trade, but there does appear to be an emerging frontrunner within NFL circles.

According to Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk, the Tennessee Titans are viewed within the game as the most likely trade destination for Jones. The belief is that the Titans will ultimately be able to part with a second-round pick to land Jones, though the Falcons have been steadfast in demanding a first-round selection. That reflects the reality that the Falcons will likely have to lower their asking price if they expect another team to take on Jones’ entire contract and open up the cap space that Atlanta desperately needs.

Florio does add that the New England Patriots should not be ruled out, as the organization likes to work quietly and could have something being worked on in the background. However, at the moment, it does not appear they are the leading contender.

Jones remains elite when healthy, and if he can stay on the field, he and A.J. Brown could form a lethal combination if he went to Tennessee. Brown would definitely welcome that, which may make it an even better fit.

Photo: Lisa Ferdinando/U.S. Secretary of Defense via CC-BY 2.0

Has this issue caused holdup in Julio Jones trade talks?

Julio Jones

The Atlanta Falcons have had discussions with numerous teams about a potential Julio Jones trade, but they may have to lower their asking price in order to complete a deal. While Jones’ age and injury history are factors in that, his contract may also be a concern for rivals.

A source familiar with Jones’ thinking told Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk that the star wide receiver could very well want a new contract if and when he is traded.

The contract Jones is currently playing under has an average annual value of $22 million, but a lot of that is the responsibility of the Falcons. If he’s traded, Jones will be owed $38.326 million over three seasons from his new team. That is viewed as a bargain for one of the top receivers in the game, but it may not be a bargain for long.

As Florio notes, Jones will likely want a new contract either immediately after he is traded or after the 2021 season. He could see how his first season with his new team goes and then ask for a substantial raise if he has a monster year.

Obviously, we’re dealing with a lot of ifs here. Jones might not even be traded, and one notable team has reportedly dropped its pursuit of the 32-year-old. Plenty of others are still interested, but Peter King of NBC Sports said Monday that he does not believe the Falcons have been offered a first-round pick.

The Falcons will save more than $15 million in salary cap space if they trade Jones after June 1, which is Wednesday. That may not be the driving force behind the discussions, but it is certainly a factor.

Photo: Lisa Ferdinando/U.S. Secretary of Defense via CC-BY 2.0

This team is reportedly out of Julio Jones trade pursuit

Julio Jones

As the market for Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones continues to heat up, one notable team is backing away from a trade pursuit.

According to Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk, the Los Angeles Rams explored the possibility of trading for Jones, but have backed out of the pursuit for the moment. This is down to several factors, including need and a lack of quality assets to offer the Falcons in trade talks.

The Rams have had cap issues, and do not have a first-round pick until 2024. In addition, the Rams already have the likes of Robert Woods, Cooper Kupp, and DeSean Jackson at the receiver position, so there is no glaring need for them to add Jones.

Even without the Rams interested, the Falcons should have no problem finding a suitor for Jones. In fact, there’s one team that plays with the Rams in the NFC West that could be willing to make the move.

Photo: Lisa Ferdinando/U.S. Secretary of Defense via CC-BY 2.0

Report: Seahawks emerge as potential Julio Jones suitor

Julio Jones

The Atlanta Falcons are working to find the best trade offer for Julio Jones, and another team has reportedly entered the sweepstakes for the All-Pro wide receiver.

The Seattle Seahawks have had discussions with the Falcons about a potential trade involving Jones, ESPN’s Dianna Russini reports. Jones and Russell Wilson have also spoken with one another about the possibility of playing together.

Wilson was openly frustrated with the Seahawks earlier in the offseason, and they have since made some moves that appear to be aimed at addressing the quarterback’s concerns. Obviously, trading for a star receiver like Jones would please Wilson.

It seems inevitable that the Falcons are going to trade Jones. They can save more than $15 million against the salary cap if they unload the 32-year-old after June 1, and they are desperate for cap space. Jones also admitted on live TV earlier this week (perhaps unknowingly) that he wants Atlanta to trade him.

If Jones does wind up in Seattle, we know one Hall of Famer who thinks that might be a bad spot for him.

Photo: Lisa Ferdinando/U.S. Secretary of Defense via CC-BY 2.0

Report: These two teams could be intriguing suitors for Julio Jones

Julio Jones

A Julio Jones trade looks inevitable, but the teams most interested remain something of a mystery. A new report could give us a clue as to who might be willing to make a deal.

ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler said on “SportsCenter” Saturday that the name he has heard the most around the league as a Jones trade candidate is the San Francisco 49ers.

“The team that comes up most often is league circles is the San Francisco 49ers,” Fowler said. “They have $17 million or so in cap space to make a deal and a Kyle Shanahan connection, but not a lot of first round capital other than the Trey Lance rookie contract they just did with the trade.

Interestingly, Fowler also named the Baltimore Ravens as a team that would be “willing to get involved if the price is right.” Baltimore has made the wide receiver position a major focus this offseason as the team tries to get more weapons for Lamar Jackson. Jones would certainly be a huge addition in that regard.

There are two other teams that Jones would reportedly prefer to land with, and they’re also at least lurking around the market. One major stumbling block would be Atlanta’s asking price, which may have to come down before some of these teams can really get involved in trade discussions. With the knowledge that the Falcons desperately need to clear cap space in a Jones deal, some of the teams might be willing to wait it out and dare them to stand pat.

Photo: Lisa Ferdinando/U.S. Secretary of Defense via CC-BY 2.0

Deion Sanders shares advice for Julio Jones on potentially changing teams

Deion Sanders

The Atlanta Falcons appear to be on the verge of trying Julio Jones, and a situation could arise where they let the Pro Bowler chose his next team if there are multiple similar offers. Deion Sanders has some advice for Julio Jones on how to handle that opportunity should it arise.

Jones admitted on live TV this week (perhaps unintentionally) that he wants the Falcons to trade him so he has a chance to win somewhere. Sanders said Jones is right to want to go to a winning franchise, but he cautioned him against joining a team that plays outdoors in a cold climate.

The Patriots were considered the betting favorite to land Jones as of Friday. While Sanders thinks they would be a good fit for the 33-year-old from a culture standpoint, he obviously thinks the New England weather could present issues for Jones.

Several NFL stars have been recruiting Jones like he’s a free agent, but he does not have a no-trade clause. The Falcons are going to take the best offer, as they should.

Is this the real reason Julio Jones wants the Falcons to trade him?

Julio Jones

Julio Jones revealed this week that he wants the Atlanta Falcons to trade him, which came as a surprise to some. Before the All-Pro made that admission, the belief was that the team planned to unload him in order to obtain some much-needed salary cap relief. Both of those things may be true.

Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reported this week that Jones requested a trade. In an appearance on “The Rich Eisen Show” Thursday, ESPN’s Dianna Russini said that trade request (or demand) came after Jones found out the Falcons were shopping him around.

“The Falcons had been doing work over the phone probably since early March,” Russini said. “They started to put it out there that, ‘Hey, we’re open for business.’ They had a few teams and had some interest.

“The way I gathered the information since I started hearing about this a few months ago, it was Atlanta open to a trade and then Julio found out about it. And that’s how that began.”

You can hear more of Russini’s report below:

It is certainly plausible that Jones, a seven-time Pro Bowler, took it personally when he learned that the Falcons want to move on from him. That may have led to a situation where he essentially told the team, “You can’t fire me, I quit!”

For what it’s worth, Jones may not have ever wanted the public to find out that he wants a trade. We only know because he admitted it when Shannon Sharpe called him on live TV (video here). Jones may not have known he was on the air, which could lead to some serious trouble for Sharpe.

Photo: Lisa Ferdinando/U.S. Secretary of Defense via CC-BY 2.0

Falcons getting closer to Julio Jones trade?

Julio Jones

There is a growing belief that it is only a matter of time before the Atlanta Falcons trade Julio Jones, and it is starting to sound like the All-Pro wide receiver may find a new home sooner rather than later.

The Falcons have been mulling over several trade offers for Jones, ESPN’s Dianna Russini reports. One of those offers includes a future first-round pick.

Atlanta can save more than $15 million in salary cap space if Jones is traded after June 1. According to Russini, the sense from NFL teams is that Jones could be moved as soon as next week.

It initially seemed like the Falcons wanted to trade Jones because they are in desperate need of salary cap space. However, we learned this week that Jones requested a trade earlier in the offseason. The 32-year-old admitted that on live TV (video here), though it is still unclear if he knew he was on the air.

Several teams reportedly have interest in Jones, so the Falcons obviously want to create a bidding war. Jones is said to have two teams at the top of his wish list, though he does not have a no-trade clause.

Jones had 51 catches for 771 yards and three touchdowns in nine games last season. It was the first time he did not surpass the 1,000-yard receiving mark since 2013, when he appeared in just five games.

Photo: Lisa Ferdinando/U.S. Secretary of Defense via CC-BY 2.0

Did Shannon Sharpe break California law with Julio Jones phone call?

Shannon Sharpe

Shannon Sharpe delivered a major scoop earlier this week when he got Julio Jones to admit live on the air that the star wide receiver wants the Atlanta Falcons to trade him. The big question is whether or not Jones knew he was on the air. If he didn’t, Sharpe may have technically broken the law.

Sharpe called Jones during FS1’s “UNDISPUTED” on Monday and asked him if he wants to remain with the Falcons. The Pro Bowler, who was on speakerphone, emphatically said, “I’m outta there man.” That was his first public admission that he wants a trade. You can see the video here.

According to a report from Front Office Sports, Sharpe’s on-air exchange with Jones has caused issues between FOX and the NFL. The Falcons were also blindsided, and Jones’ representatives at Creative Artists Agency have reached out to the network about the situation. One source told FOS that it has “become a huge deal.”

There is also a legal element to what transpired. As FOS notes, “UNDISPUTED” is produced at the FOX Sports studio in Los Angeles. California is a two-party consent state, which means you cannot record or air a conversation like the one Sharpe and Jones had unless both parties agree to it. Sharpe could, in theory, be charged with a misdemeanor under California Penal Code Sec. 632, which carries up to a $2,000 fine and/or a year in jail.

Jones would have to file a complaint in order for Sharpe to be charged. That has not happened and it is highly unlikely that it will.

If Sharpe did not inform Jones that he was on the air, it would be the second major flub for the host in the past month or so. He also recently embarrassed himself when he used a fake quote in an attempt to call out Kevin Durant.

Titans’ AJ Brown sends recruiting message to Julio Jones

AJ Brown

AJ Brown wants Julio Jones on the Tennessee Titans.

Brown shared on Twitter Tuesday a video recording of the messages he left for Jones on Instagram. Brown had sent Jones a message over Instagram in 2019 to thank the Atlanta Falcons receiver for paving the way for him. That message was sent prior to Brown entering the NFL Draft.

Now, two years later, Brown is recruiting Jones to his team.

He left Jones an audio message telling the 32-year-old to come help the Titans win. Brown said in the audio recording that Jones could “carry the load.” However, Brown was no longer offering to give Jones his jersey number.

Titans safety Kevin Byard chimed in too and said he supported the message 100 percent.

Jones recently confirmed on TV that he wants a trade from Atlanta. There are two teams reportedly on his wishlist.

Jones is a 7-time Pro Bowler and has led the NFL in receiving yards twice and receptions once.