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Posted (edited)

I agree that we may see a big dropoff this year with Julio. Has to happen sometime and I think this may be the year.

Besides the fact that he was the right pick at #4, I imagine a big part of the team's allure with Pitts is the expectation that the end may be near for Julio.

Edited by zamboni
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Posted (edited)

One of these years will be the year he drops off, but I’m not sure there’s a lot of reason to think this is the year.

In 2019, just the season before last, Julio once again put up elite numbers of 99/1394/6. Then last season he had games of: 

9/157

8/137/2

8/97

7/137

6/94

So even in 2020, battling injuries much of the season, he was still dominant putting up elite numbers. The only real question is can he still do so consistently?

I think he can, but in a different manner. Perhaps fewer targets/receptions on a weekly basis, but in bigger chunks and more TDs. If he stays in Atlanta with Ridley and Pitts, for the first time since his rookie season Julio could be seeing one-on-one coverage. Give Juilo more plays off. Look to Ridley and Pitts more often while targeting Julio more strategically, for big plays and more red zone targets. Used in this manner I can see Julio easily beating one-on-one coverage a few times a game for big plays/TDs. Instead of a volume-rich 9/157/0 we may see 6/102/1, or 5/75/2 which is fine by me fantasy-wise. 
 

The question of trade looms large though, and destination is obviously important. That said, a likely suitor would be one of a serious contender with complimentary weapons already in place. A team that could use him in the manner I described above. How do we think Julio Jones would fare with Aaron Rodgers in GB? Or In Buffalo with Josh Allen? What about with Patrick Mahomes in KC? If Julio lands in a destination like that I think elite numbers are very possible, if not likely. He may not get the volume we’re used to but should see plenty of beatable one-on-one coverage and scoring opportunities. Again, he proved just last season that he can still dominate. Of course, if he lands on a bad team it could spell trouble, but a bad/rebuilding team taking on the massive contract of an aging WR just doesn’t make much sense, and is therefore unlikely.
 

I just think some are writing Julio off a bit too soon, and he may turn out to be one of the best fantasy values in 2021. 

Edited by satch
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19 hours ago, menobrown said:

He's gone.

 

I saw something on NFL Network where the Falcons put out a Wallpaper Schedule for fans that pictured all of their “stars” but no Julio. That could mean nothing of course but seems telling - not only is he still arguably the best player on the team currently but he’s one of their all-time greats.

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Posted (edited)
16 minutes ago, Dr. Octopus said:

I saw something on NFL Network where the Falcons put out a Wallpaper Schedule for fans that pictured all of their “stars” but no Julio. That could mean nothing of course but seems telling - not only is he still arguably the best player on the team currently but he’s one of their all-time greats.

I saw that as well. No way they intentionally leave Julio off a team schedule promo like that unless they know he’s not going to be part of the team. Seems almost too obvious though, would love to hear an explanation if he remains a Falcon. Makes me think they’ve already got a June 1st deal in place. 

Edited by satch
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Just now, satch said:

I saw that as well. No way they intentionally leave Julio off a team schedule promo like that unless they know he’s not going to be part of the team. Seems almost too obvious though, would love to hear an explanation if he remains a Falcon. 

Yes, that’s not an oversight. It’s obviously a measured decision to purposely leave off your biggest star. I’d have to imagine he’s gone.

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1 hour ago, Dr. Octopus said:

Yes, that’s not an oversight. It’s obviously a measured decision to purposely leave off your biggest star. I’d have to imagine he’s gone.

FWIW they claimed it was in fact an oversight and ended up subbing one of the Matt Ryan photos for Julio. I don't believe them.

 

 

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2 hours ago, satch said:

I saw that as well. No way they intentionally leave Julio off a team schedule promo like that unless they know he’s not going to be part of the team. Seems almost too obvious though, would love to hear an explanation if he remains a Falcon. Makes me think they’ve already got a June 1st deal in place. 

It's not an oversight. I worked for the agency handling AT&T's sponsorship of the Cowboys during the period when Zeke had some off-field risk. We had to pivot an entire in-venue experience to feature Witten at the 11th hour, and Zeke was the guy on the Cowboys. Never underestimate how risk-averse teams are regarding PR, or how they contingency plan for the worst case scenarios.

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1 hour ago, scothawk said:

Im trying to move him in dynasty in 2 leagues. Barely a whisper in response.

Tough time of year to trade an older vet at position of surplus for most fantasy teams. Unless you got to clear roster space I'd just sit on him for now.

Even before factoring in his age he's taken a steady 2-3  round drop in redrafts from last year so it's more then age.Then you got swirling trade rumors, another mouth to feed if he's not traded.

Next you got rookie WR's coming in and some other WR's that I'm sure a lot of fantasy owners have hope will emerge so again just overall about the worst timing you could have.

I'm down to one Julio share in dynasty and not really looking to trade him but if I was I'd wait till at least he's dealt. Then I might poke around because for some reason when a player is dealt most of the time you see an initial wave of excitement. For instance I recall Hopkins flying up to late round one last year right after he got traded, and then without anything negative started process of easing back into mid to late round 2 after the hype wore off. So a trade might create you first window. If that does not work just hold into the season, hope he starts well and when the bullets are flying for real, the hope fades for some of these young WR's to emerge and teams find themselves in use of a WR1 type player is the time to try hard to move him if that's your goal.

 

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11 hours ago, Andy Dufresne said:

Doubt they'd trade him to an NFC team. I'd say the Raiders or Titans. Maybe the Chargers.

IIRC, Jones has a $15.3M salary for 2021. LV has $8.2M in cap space and TEN $3.6M. The only team on your list that could bring him in without any other roster moves would be LAC, as they have $20M in cap space.

For whomever suggested GB, they only have $3M in cap space.

That's the 800 pound gorilla in the room. Not many teams have enough cap room to take Jones' contract at this point in the off season. There are probably 6, maybe 7 teams, that could afford him without making subsequent moves.

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11 hours ago, Andy Dufresne said:

Doubt they'd trade him to an NFC team. I'd say the Raiders or Titans. Maybe the Chargers.

Agree with the list.

 

9 minutes ago, Anarchy99 said:

IIRC, Jones has a $15.3M salary for 2021. LV has $8.2M in cap space and TEN $3.6M. The only team on your list that could bring him in without any other roster moves would be LAC, as they have $20M in cap space.

 

True and not saying it's just nothing to consider but I did look at Raiders the other day and it would be very easy for them to create the cap space.  Carr and Ngakoue's stood out as easily being able to create cap space in addition to ability to restructure Julio's deal and spread out some of that hit since he's down to about 2/$23 in 22/23.

I'm for sure not one of those people who say the cap does not matter but they can get it done if they want, have not looked at other teams.

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2 minutes ago, menobrown said:

Agree with the list.

 

True and not saying it's just nothing to consider but I did look at Raiders the other day and it would be very easy for them to create the cap space.  Carr and Ngakoue's stood out as easily being able to create cap space in addition to ability to restructure Julio's deal and spread out some of that hit since he's down to about 2/$23 in 22/23.

I'm for sure not one of those people who say the cap does not matter but they can get it done if they want, have not looked at other teams.

I never know who knows the rules and requirements for cap space and trading around here, so forgive me if you already are aware. But teams have to remain under the cap at the exact moment they complete a trade. So they would have to fit the entirety of Jones' salary at the time they acquired him. Sure, they could reduce his cap hit after they traded for him, but that does not change the requirement that they would need $15M+ in cap space at the time they brought him in (or whatever his salary was at the time they signed off on the trade).

Another option as a possibility is the acquiring team could get the Falcons to convert some of Jones' salary to a bonus and have them pay some of the money Jones is due this year. That just happened with DEN and CAR with Bridgewater. However, whatever portion the Falcons pay they have to eat as a cap hit.

I'm not saying that trading for Jones is a non-starter . . . only that other things / moves would have to happen first to make things work before a trade could be completed for many teams. That being said, I would guess that at least half the league would struggle to find ways to get Jones under the cap without major rework of contracts or player cuts.

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14 minutes ago, Anarchy99 said:

I never know who knows the rules and requirements for cap space and trading around here, so forgive me if you already are aware. But teams have to remain under the cap at the exact moment they complete a trade. So they would have to fit the entirety of Jones' salary at the time they acquired him. Sure, they could reduce his cap hit after they traded for him, but that does not change the requirement that they would need $15M+ in cap space at the time they brought him in (or whatever his salary was at the time they signed off on the trade).

Another option as a possibility is the acquiring team could get the Falcons to convert some of Jones' salary to a bonus and have them pay some of the money Jones is due this year. That just happened with DEN and CAR with Bridgewater. However, whatever portion the Falcons pay they have to eat as a cap hit.

I'm not saying that trading for Jones is a non-starter . . . only that other things / moves would have to happen first to make things work before a trade could be completed for many teams. That being said, I would guess that at least half the league would struggle to find ways to get Jones under the cap without major rework of contracts or player cuts.

I think teams are so creative with the cap nowadays we really have no concept of what a team really can or can't do.

The Rams come to mind with all the capologists telling us they were only going to be able to ink long term deals for like 2-3 out of Goff/Donald/Gurley/Kupp/Woods.  Then they ended up not only signing all five of them but also trading for Jalen Ramsey and giving him a huge deal on top of all that.

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1 minute ago, FreeBaGeL said:

I think teams are so creative with the cap nowadays we really have no concept of what a team really can or can't do.

The Rams come to mind with all the capologists telling us they were only going to be able to ink long term deals for like 2-3 out of Goff/Donald/Gurley/Kupp/Woods.  Then they ended up not only signing all five of them but also trading for Jalen Ramsey and giving him a huge deal on top of all that.

Agreed that teams can get creative on what they try to do, but the Rams have not won a SB and have had some cap flexibility issues because of some of the things they have done. For example, they are eating $24.7M against the cap this season in dead money from trading Goff . . . the largest single season cap write off in league history. They also took the second biggest dead cap hit in league history when they ate $21.8M for moving Brandin Cooks.

I don't know how much better the team would be if they spent all that cap space on players instead, but I'm guessing whomever they had would be better than just eating tens of millions of dollars. They also are eating $8.4M still leftover from Gurley in 2021.

IMO, teams are either loading up for a SB run or trying to build something sustainable over time. The Rams are sort of in the middle. They went all in during their SB season, missed the playoffs one year, and have had a competitive team. Between Goff, Cooks, and Gurley, they essentially wasted almost $65M in cap space across last year and this year. That's just bad business in my book.

It's hard to really know at this point what would have happened (or could happen), but it's possible that Goff and nearly $25M in player upgrades would be a better team than Stafford and no player upgrades. But that's why they play the games and we'll have to see how things turn out.

The other thing about signing players to big contracts is they generally carry low cap charges at the beginning and huge cap hits at the end of contracts. Who knows, but maybe with better salary cap management the Rams could have won 13 or 14 games for three seasons in a row and been a true SB contender instead of dropping back to 9 or 10 wins and being a decent team but not a dominant force.

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I know everyone is down on him in dynasty (and I think that's 100% justified) but in a PPR redraft, any reason he shouldn't still be considered more valuable than say Evans, Godwin, or Lamb for example? 

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42 minutes ago, ffmail4me said:

I know everyone is down on him in dynasty (and I think that's 100% justified) but in a PPR redraft, any reason he shouldn't still be considered more valuable than say Evans, Godwin, or Lamb for example? 

I've felt that way up until I though he'd get traded and consequently he's been one of my most often drafted redraft players so far this year in range for mid 4th to early 5th.

But there are bad landing spots though Baltimore drafting two WR's eased my mind a little so I know I'd for sure take someone like Lamb over him now, plus durability issues but would still likely take him over the Tampa's even with so much unknown.

Twitter was actually busy this morning with Julio news due to Jeff Schultz of The Athletic writing an article and Albert Breer mentioning him. Breer said there has been little smoke going on lately in trade talks and Schultz was laying out why Atlanta still wants to deal him. He also said in a followup tweet he heard from two people that Chargers were a team to watch but listed I believe Titans , SF, Ravens, NE and the Colts as teams in his article that fit critreria of need and cap space. Those are some spots I'd have to drop his value at least a little.

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NBC Sports Boston's Michael Holley reports Julio Jones wants to play for the Patriots.

"You know who (Jones) really wants to play with? He wants to play with Cam Newton," Holley reported on Boston Sports Tonight. Jones also reportedly thinks Falcons QB Matt Ryan has "lost a little on his deep ball." The Julio trade rumors have started to heat up with Atlanta needing cap room to sign draft picks. The Patriots, who acquired Mohamed Sanu from the Falcons for a second-rounder in 2019 and have a history of trading for receivers, are one of the teams that could fit his $15.3 million base salary. The Chargers, 49ers, Raiders, and Colts have also been linked as possible landing spots for Jones.

RELATED: 

New England Patriots

SOURCE: NBC Sports Boston

May 22, 2021, 11:25 AM ET

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12 minutes ago, JohnnyU said:

Just curious, why does he want to play for the Patriots?  It's not like these are the Patriots of yesteryear.

Because they are the most stable franchise in the NFL and after going 7-9 with a very subpar roster (i.e. almost any other Coach would have been 3-13) they have totally remade their roster and will be a team that will be able to play with anyone next year...also (and this part I don't understand) it appears Julio would not playing with Cam...until they have a succession of subpar years or BB is not on the sideline they will still remain attractive to players as was seen by this offseason. 

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34 minutes ago, Boston said:

Because they are the most stable franchise in the NFL and after going 7-9 with a very subpar roster (i.e. almost any other Coach would have been 3-13) they have totally remade their roster and will be a team that will be able to play with anyone next year...also (and this part I don't understand) it appears Julio would not playing with Cam...until they have a succession of subpar years or BB is not on the sideline they will still remain attractive to players as was seen by this offseason. 

I would just think at this stage of his career he would want to play for a team that has a real chance at a Super Bowl.

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Just now, JohnnyU said:

I would just think at this stage of his career he would want to play for a team that has a real chance at a Super Bowl.

Put Julio on the Pats and if Mac Jones becomes the real deal (both big ifs) they become Super Bowl contenders real fast.

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3 minutes ago, Boston said:

Put Julio on the Pats and if Mac Jones becomes the real deal (both big ifs) they become Super Bowl contenders real fast.

Of course you would think that being a Pats fan, and I respect it, but I don't see it.  Yes, they could be better, but I don't see them sniffing the Super Bowl in 2021.

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Posted (edited)
7 minutes ago, JohnnyU said:

Of course you would think that being a Pats fan, and I respect it, but I don't see it.  Yes, they could be better, but I don't see them sniffing the Super Bowl in 2021.

Has nothing to do with being a homer (I was pretty adamant last season was not gonna be pretty with that roster)...has to do what I have seen BB do the past 20 years...they have added a ton of talent this offseason and if he can get legit QB play they will be a contender...obviously not at the level they were with Brady but more than capable of beating anyone in one game.

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3 minutes ago, JohnnyU said:

Of course you would think that being a Pats fan, and I respect it, but I don't see it.  Yes, they could be better, but I don't see them sniffing the Super Bowl in 2021.

The 2021 Patriots with Julio Jones would be substantially more talented on both sides of the ball than the 2018 Patriots team that won the SB. The 2021 version has way more depth across the board. True, they don't have TB12 and that's a huge piece of the puzzle. But they won in 2018 based on coaching and game planning. The offense was Michel and Edelman and not much else (Gronk was mostly a blocker by then).

That probably means the 2018 squad overachieved and probably shouldn't have won that year. But BB and staff with a decent team is always a threat. If you want to suggest this team isn't that talented or their QB situation will kill them, so be it.

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5 minutes ago, Boston said:

Has nothing to do with being a homer (I was pretty adamant last season was not gonna be pretty with that roster)...has to do what I have seen BB do the past 20 years...they have added a ton of talent this offseason and if he can get legit QB play they will be a contender...obviously not at the level they were with Brady but more than capable of beating anyone in one game.

I think he could try and get a trade to a better team if he truly wants to go to a Super Bowl.    I'll just leave it at that.  I respect your opinion even though I don't see them as Super Bowl contenders in 2021.  Stay tuned....

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1 minute ago, JohnnyU said:

I think he could try and get a trade to a better team if he truly wants to go to a Super Bowl.    I'll just leave it at that.  I respect your opinion even though I don't see them as Super Bowl contenders in 2021.  Stay tuned....

As I said...with Julio and good QB play I think they become one...right now they are a playoff-level team that no one will want to play in the playoffs due to BB...all that being said the how good they will be will ultimately come down to their QB play which has a pretty big swing of potentially good to bad right now.

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Posted (edited)
17 minutes ago, Boston said:

As I said...with Julio and good QB play I think they become one...right now they are a playoff-level team that no one will want to play in the playoffs due to BB...all that being said the how good they will be will ultimately come down to their QB play which has a pretty big swing of potentially good to bad right now.

I think it's more than QB play.  Yes, the Patriots addressed their weaknesses in free agency, but how many times have we seen this tried the NFL?  Dan Snyder anyone?  Their DBs may still be a problem and are aging.  I think it will take more than signing Jalen Mills.  They didn't really address DBs in the draft until the 6th round.  Spending a 4th round pick on Stevenson wasn't needed.   Also, they had trouble protecting their QBs in 2020 and I don't think they did enough with their FA signings to address it and didn't draft an OL until the 6th round.   I really like what they did at TE with the Henry and Smith signings and I also like what they've done with their DL and LB through FA and the draft, so DL play and run stopping should be a lot better in 2021.

Edited by JohnnyU
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Someone refresh my memory: Does Mac Jones have a strong arm?  I don't watch much college ball, so I cannot recall how well he throws the deep ball. Leaving aside that Cam is not the passer he used to be, Julio wanting to play for the Patriots and with Cam seems a bit curious since it remains to be seen how long Cam will remain the starter. 

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1 minute ago, Ghost Rider said:

Someone refresh my memory: Does Mac Jones have a strong arm?  I don't watch much college ball, so I cannot recall how well he throws the deep ball. Leaving aside that Cam is not the passer he used to be, Julio wanting to play for the Patriots and with Cam seems a bit curious since it remains to be seen how long Cam will remain the starter. 

I didn't watch a ton of Alabama this year, but Jones is said to have an average arm based on velocity and distance. He is said to be extremely accurate (although I did see an article that even questioned that to a certain extent). I don't know what that would translate to on the field. If he doesn't have the ball speed to hit guys in tight windows but has hit guys in tight windows without having a 100 MPH fastball, then what? 

The article I read said yes Jones was accurate in that he delivered the ball where it could be caught, but he still needs work on hitting receivers more in stride or lead them where they could get additional yards after the catch (on throws that were deeper than swing passes). My take away from the article was yeah he completed a lot of passes but on a few of them he could have done a little better.

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25 minutes ago, Ghost Rider said:

Someone refresh my memory: Does Mac Jones have a strong arm?  I don't watch much college ball, so I cannot recall how well he throws the deep ball. Leaving aside that Cam is not the passer he used to be, Julio wanting to play for the Patriots and with Cam seems a bit curious since it remains to be seen how long Cam will remain the starter. 

What do we mean by "strong"? He has Cousins/Mayfield/Carr level velocity, IMO. 

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10 minutes ago, Anarchy99 said:

Around Boston, the comparison used the most has been Chad Pennington.

I'm far from a QB expert but Mack seems to have a lot more spin on his throws than I remember Pennington having. And CP always kind of had to heave the ball. I don't see that from Mack.

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8 minutes ago, Andy Dufresne said:

I'm far from a QB expert but Mack seems to have a lot more spin on his throws than I remember Pennington having. And CP always kind of had to heave the ball. I don't see that from Mack.

From the way it’s been described, Mac Jones is said to be similar to a young CP before his surgeries. Most of us remember the guy who looked like he was struggling to get much on his throws and was more chucking than spinning. The people that were suggesting this had been NFL folks for decades. I don’t remember the young Pennington, so I will just have to take what they say at face value. 

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30 minutes ago, Andy Dufresne said:

What do we mean by "strong"? He has Cousins/Mayfield/Carr level velocity, IMO. 

That seems good, but not great,  If Julio wants to get traded for Cam's deep ball, he could be bummed quickly if Mac Jones is starting by October. 

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NFL Network’s Mike Giardi reports the Patriots have had internal discussions about trading for Julio Jones.

This builds off a report that Jones wants to play with Cam Newton. The Patriots signed Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne this offseason but don’t have a true No. 1 receiver. That makes them a potential fit for Jones, who has a $23 million cap hit this year and $19 million over the next two seasons. The Falcons can clear Julio’s entire base salary ($15.3 million) and leave only  $7.75 million in dead money with a post-June trade.

RELATED: 

New England Patriots

SOURCE: NFL Network

May 23, 2021, 11:26 AM ET

 

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14 minutes ago, Ghost Rider said:

That seems good, but not great,  If Julio wants to get traded for Cam's deep ball, he could be bummed quickly if Mac Jones is starting by October. 

Cam couldn’t even throw 10 yards by the end of the season. He was bouncing throws to receivers that short hopped their ankles. Why anyone would want to play with Cam is a mystery. 

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Here are the latest Vegas odds for where Jones will play this year from DraftKings Sportsbook:

Atlanta Falcons -150
Indianapolis Colts +500
Los Angeles Chargers +500
Baltimore Ravens +700
New England Patriots +700
San Francisco 49ers +800
Tennessee Titans +800
Green Bay Packers +1000
New Orleans Saints +2500

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1 hour ago, JohnnyU said:

I think he could try and get a trade to a better team if he truly wants to go to a Super Bowl.    I'll just leave it at that.  I respect your opinion even though I don't see them as Super Bowl contenders in 2021.  Stay tuned....

The Bills, Dolphins and Jets are better than they were in 2018. NE went 5-1 in division games, losing only in the Miracle in Miami, winning the other games by an average of 20 points. Their path to a SB is not easy, especially with Cam or Jones at QB.

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13 minutes ago, Anarchy99 said:

Cam couldn’t even throw 10 yards by the end of the season. He was bouncing throws to receivers that short hopped their ankles. Why anyone would want to play with Cam is a mystery. 

Maybe Julio is into fashion...

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