The Atlanta Falcons’ asking price in a trade for wide receiver Julio Jones reportedly is dropping if the New England Patriots want to jump into negotiations on a potential bargain.
Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated believes it would only take a second-round pick for the Falcons to part with Jones in a trade. The Falcons were asking teams for a first-round pick before the 2021 NFL Draft, Breer reported Monday.
The Patriots have $15,078,316 in salary cap space, per Miguel Benzan, aka @PatsCap on Twitter. Jones comes with a $15.3 million base salary, so New England only would have to make a minor roster move to fit him under the cap.
There’s certainly space for Jones in the Patriots’ starting offense. With tight ends Jonnu Smith and Hunter Henry projected to start, New England only has space for two starting wide receivers. Nelson Agholor is penciled into one of those roles. Currently, Jakobi Meyers and Kendrick Bourne are expected to battle it out for the other spot.
Jones would come in atop the Patriots’ wide receiver depth chart, bumping everyone else down one level.
The 32-year-old missed seven games with a hamstring injury last season but still caught 51 passes for 771 yards with three touchdowns. Jones was coming off of a 99-catch, 1,394-yard, six-touchdown campaign in 2019. He led the NFL in receiving yards with 1,677 in 2018.
Jones is a seven-time Pro Bowl selection, two-time All-Pro and made the All-2010s team. He’s spent his entire NFL career with the Falcons after being selected sixth overall in the 2011 NFL Draft out of Alabama.