NFL Trade Rumors: 'Most Teams' Eyeing Julio Jones 'Are Leery on Overpaying'

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVMay 31, 2021

Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (11) speaks to a teammate during the second half of an NFL football game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Sunday, Dec. 20, 2020, in Atlanta. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers won 31-27. (AP Photo/Danny Karnik)
AP Photo/Danny Karnik

Teams discussing a trade for Atlanta Falcons receiver Julio Jones are "leery on overpaying" for the future Hall of Famer.

Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated reported teams do not want to pay for Jones' past production. The Falcons have understandably set a high price point for the greatest wide receiver in franchise history, one that no team has been willing to meet.

ESPN's Dianna Russini said recently that Atlanta has an offer of a first-round pick on the table for Jones.

It's unclear whether that draft pick is conditional on the Falcons paying part of Jones' salary or his performance with his new team. NBC Sports' Peter King reported the Falcons would accept a second-round pick that does not come with any conditions, so the logical through line is teams want Atlanta to throw in some help to facilitate the trade.

Jones is due a fully guaranteed $15.3 million base salary for the 2021 season. While that number is slightly below market value for a top-10 receiver, Jones is coming off a campaign wherein he played just nine games because of injury.

He remained wildly productive during those games, hauling in 51 receptions for 771 yards and three touchdowns, but he's a 32-year-old with a decade of NFL experience under his belt. It's fair to wonder when the level of punishment Jones' body has taken will begin lessening his impact.

Several teams interested in Jones will have to maneuver money to fit his salary under the cap. The New England Patriots are the only team regularly mentioned among Jones' suitors who would have to make few to no roster adjustments in order to make a trade work.