Undrafted – The Network

Julio Jones Will Land With…

The Julio Jones hype is building and after a pretty conclusive & controversial call with Shannon Sharpe live on air, the writing seems to be on the wall. Julio is ‘outta there’. His days in Atlanta are most definitely coming to an end, and the news sent the rest of the league into a frenzy of recruitment. The 32 year old wants to win, and I’d say the fact that he likely has two years left at the elite level restricts his options in potential landing spots. Of course, Atlanta has the final say… but here are each of our thoughts on where the big man will be suiting up on Sundays this season…

Alex: Julio Jones Will Land With…

The Kansas City Chiefs! Currently, the Chiefs are sitting on around $8-9M in cap space, they could make this work. The Falcons are going to have to swallow some dead cap on him, as Julio’s contract currently takes up over 12% of their total cap value. Julio played in 9 games in 2020, and with Calvin Ridley coming up strong, and the addition of Kyle Pitts, the Falcons can afford to cash in on Julio Jones and begin rebuilding for their future.

The Chiefs don’t have the equivalent of a Bucs Mike Evans kind of receiver. They rotate the guys who spend time lined up outside. In fact, the only receiver on the roster who spent more than 51% of his snaps lined up on the outside was Demarcus Robinson. Everybody else moves around the line up and spends time in multiple spots pre snap. While this is one of the things that makes the Chiefs offence both unique and unpredictable, having a receiver like Julio Jones, who can attack a contested catch and win most one on ones, would add an element to their roster that they don’t currently have.

Depth is lacking on the Chiefs roster at the receiver position. While Byron Pringle can make somewhat of a contribution, the depth isn’t there. Julio would be a weekly starter, and would replace the gap left by Sammy Watkins, who moved on this off season. Adding Julio Jones to their roster puts the Chiefs one step closer to taking themselves all the way again in 2021. This year Kelce and Tyreek Hill had over 2600 yards in the regular season between the two of them. Sammy Watkins had 421 of his own. If you split that 3000 yards between Kelce, Hill, and Julio Jones… you have three pro bowl talents, each with a 1000 yard season catching passes from the best QB in the league. Good luck stopping that. 2nd round pick… Make it happen KC.

Adam: Julio Jones Will Land With…

For me this has the Indianapolis Colts written all over it. They have a low-key good squad and a player of Julio’s calibre could be the spark needed to push them over the top. I have all the faith in Carson Wentz which some people do not. I think reuniting him with Frank Reich should go some way to sorting his head out and that means getting rid of the ball quicker. If he has a target like Julio to throw to it also helps to make that decision even easier. The Colts are the sort of team who i envisage working the cap around Julio’s wage demands. That said, I can also see Julio being willing to restructure if he is at a team he thinks can get him that ring.

The Colts have receivers but none of this standard. T.Y. Hilton is on his last legs, Michael Pittman, whilst young and having shown flashes last season, really only ran one route. He ran it well and it was effective but he needs the development that can only come with time. Parris Campbell is the forgotten man here and, if fit, could play a part. Aside from these guys there are a bunch of nobodies. Teams are going to have to stack the box to contain Jonathan Taylor which will open up space for the receivers and that means myriad chances to score. If Julio lands here you may as well give the Colts the Division title now.

The Colts do not have the most cap space of the teams mentioned in this article but they have more than enough to make this move work. I can see the Colts going 5-1 in Division and could even scrape 12-6 if Julio is on board. That may well be enough for a bye to the Divisional Round of the playoffs. If Julio joins count me in for those having a cheeky flutter on the Colts to win it all. I may even go and put that tenner on now, before the odds shorten after Julio signs up in Indy…

Murray: Julio Jones Will Land With…

I personally see Julio heading to the Tennessee Titans. AJ Browns’ idol, Julio will give Titans that extra something that can make them a legit Super Bowl winning team. AJ has already come out and said he’s willing to give up the number 11 for Julio. Derrick Henry has been training with him this off season, it all makes sense. The only thing stopping teams snapping up Julio, is the cap hit that comes with him. Titans however have the cap available and are set up, oven ready for a Super Bowl run. Falcons have said they’ll accept a second round pick for Julio, if you’re going all or nothing this season then it would be a fantastic idea. Titans should put all their chips on one of the most prolific wide receivers in the NFL

Julio Jones fuels Titans rumors in workout with Derrick Henry
Credit: USA Today

Tom: Julio Jones Will Land With…

Green Bay, if and this is a big if, Aaron Rodgers stays. With Julio opposite Davante Adams, the league is immediately put on notice. If A-Rod can go for an MVP season, with one legitimate top tier target, imagine what he can do with two of them. The Run game benefits from this, the other receivers are wide open pretty much every play, and if you double team one of them the other one will destroy everything. Jones has dealt with some health issues but he comes into a situation here without the number 1 target on his back anymore, and as the second receiver look for him to be top 5 in the league come the end of the season.

Wherever Julio Jones goes though, it must be to a situation where the team is ready to compete and ready to win. He is not going to a rebuild, he is not going to a team on the cusp but with the possibility of a missed opportunity. Therefore, and I know this is not really fair, but Aaron Rodgers does leave Green Bay, Jones will not be moving to the Frozen Tundra that is Lambeau Field. He will instead move to sunnier climates, for his final years living near the ocean. If Aaron Rodgers leaves Green Bay, I except Jones in L.A with the Rams.

The Rams have shown they do not care about moving around players, both in and out of the club, and with the recent acquisition of Matthew Stafford, they are in a position to take the next step. Add All-Pro Julio Jones to that mix and all of a sudden, the Rams will start building up a gap to the competition behind them. Never have I seen a coach go after what he wants like Sean McVay and I fully expect him to do the same here. When he is firing on all cylinders, Jones is a matchup nightmare. Stafford will have a legitimate star to pass to again and expect it to thrive like the Megatron connection, except this time with two hands on the Lombardi.

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