Wednesday Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones told reporters he will not hold out. He will not make his pending contract status a situation.
That should not be a surprise.
Sure, Jones is going to want to get paid. He's one of many receivers who are close to hitting the jackpot with a new NFL contract. But Jones has never come off as the type of person that would allow this type of story to become a distraction for his team and his teammates.
The Falcons want to get Jones signed, but they are likely trying to be creative with Jones' agent, Jimmy Sexton, to not cripple the franchise moving forward. The team already has quarterback Matt Ryan in a long-term deal, and the Falcons did a good job of having that deal be flexible enough not to dictate the salary cap for future seasons.
Jones is obviously a player the Falcons must keep for the long-term. The Falcons gave up a ton in a trade to move up to draft Jones. Plus, he's shown, especially last season, how dangerous a player he can be as a threat for Ryan at receiver.
Jones had 1,593 receiving yards last season with six touchdowns. The previous season Jones battled a foot injury, which is something the Falcons do not seem nervous about.
The 6-3, 220-pound super freak athlete is 26 years old. With Roddy White now 33 years old and at the end of his career, the Falcons need to invest in Jones for the long-term.
It would be preferable to get the contract out of the way before training camp starts so this won't be a lingering story. But at least we know with Jones' comments Wednesday that he will not let the contract discussions impact his preparation for the upcoming season.
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Jones hoping to get extension done soon
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