The Tennessee Titans acquired All-Pro wide receiver Julio Jones from the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday.
The Falcons agreed to send Jones and a 2023 sixth-round pick to Tennessee in exchange for a 2022 second-round and 2023 fourth-round selection, ending weeks of speculation surrounding the 10-year veteran.
The NFL Network reported the Titans will assume all of Jones’ $15.3 million salary for 2021 and $11.51 million for 2022 and 2023, while the Falcons will take a $7.75 million dead cap hit.
Jones, a seven-time Pro Bowl selection, will join A.J. Brown as wideouts on a Titans team that features bruising running back Derrick Henry. Jones caught 51 passes for 771 yards and three touchdowns in nine games in 2020, when his low production was a byproduct of injuries.
Brown, 23, has actively been campaigning over social media for Tennessee to acquire his “idol” Jones. After ESPN first broke the news of the impending trade, Brown took a bow on social media Sunday for his efforts, writing “I need my commission from them recruiting videos @Titans.”
— AJ Brown (@1kalwaysopen_) June 6, 2021
Brown had 70 receptions for 1,075 yards with 11 touchdowns in 14 games last season.
He told ESPN that the addition of Jones will make the Titans offense all the more dangerous.
“It takes some of the tension off of me and with Derrick (Henry) and Ryan (Tannehill) with Anthony (Firkser),” Brown said. “Having another dominant guy on the other side, everybody has to be honest. Now, you don’t know who’s going to hold who. I may get CB1 or Julio may get CB1. But whoever gets CB2, (that cornerback) is going to be in trouble. It’s going to be fun.”
The Titans saw two of their top pass catchers from 2020 exit in free agency, as wide receiver Corey Davis (65 receptions) signed with the New York Jets and tight end Jonnu Smith (41) joined the New England Patriots.
Henry led the league in rushing with 2,027 yards and added 17 touchdowns in 2020, earning Offensive Player of the Year honors.
The Falcons made Jones the No. 6 overall pick in the 2011 draft. Now 32, he is the Falcons’ career leader in receptions (848) and yards (12,896). His 60 touchdown catches are three shy of Roddy White’s club record.
Calvin Ridley will become the No. 1 wideout on Atlanta with the departure of Jones. The Falcons picked up the fifth-year option on Ridley last month.
Ridley, 26, was a first-round pick in 2018 (26th overall) and set career highs with 90 receptions for 1,374 yards last season, adding nine touchdowns in 15 games. He has 217 receptions for 3,061 yards and 26 touchdowns in 44 games (30 starts) with the Falcons.
–Field Level Media