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JJ says "I'm am Outta there" on Undisputed!

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2 minutes ago, Kaptain Krazy said:

Here's Barnwell's take on feasible trade options. 

Disgruntled Falcons fans should love it - Julio stuck in JAX


I’ve never used African ESPN before. Exotic. Sadly, I don’t have ESPN+ so I have no idea what Barnwell says. 

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6 hours ago, Rings said:

Ok.  We paid a 2nd rounder for Hayden Hurst.  Is Julio at 32 better than Hayden Hurst on his rookie deal?   Unless we either don’t think he would show up at all or think he will be a cancer to the locker room, I can’t see them settling for less than a 1st.  If they settle for a 2nd, it’s because of one of those two things.

H3ll yeah, Julio at 32 is better. He's an instant upgrade to any team. Just like Moss was when the Raiders traded him to the Patriots.

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3 hours ago, Kaptain Krazy said:

Here's Barnwell's take on feasible trade options. 

Disgruntled Falcons fans should love it - Julio stuck in JAX



3 hours ago, Atlantafan21 said:

I’ve never used African ESPN before. Exotic. Sadly, I don’t have ESPN+ so I have no idea what Barnwell says. 

Only in the NFL is June 1 not actually on June 1. On paper, June 1 plays a huge role for teams as they plan their futures and plot their roster moves. It serves as a line of demarcation for salary-cap purposes as players are cut and traded. It also mostly locks in the compensatory draft pick formula for each organization, allowing teams to sign players without having to worry about canceling out one of the picks they earned for losing a free agent.

But in the NFL's reality, June 1 came on May 3, if not earlier. Heading into the NFL offseason, each team is allowed to designate two players as post-June 1 releases. On May 3, the league announced to teams that they were able to process signings and other roster decisions as if they were post-June 1 moves. What amounted to an accounting decision spurred several signings and will result in a handful more in the weeks to come.

Let's get into how the June 1 deadline works for NFL teams, give a couple of examples of how it influenced decision-making over the past few months and then explore what happens next. Now that teams are on the other side of May 3, what sort of signings are more likely to happen? And more interestingly, perhaps, are there potential trades that make sense?

How 'June 1' works

Let's consider two examples of why June 1 matters. First, take the Baltimore Ravens, who have historically been as invested in the compensatory pick game as anyone else. Over The Cap projects that the Ravens are set to earn two fourth-round picks for losing pass-rushers Matt Judon and Yannick Ngakoue.

Baltimore wanted to address the offensive line this offseason in free agency, and by being very specific about who they signed, the Ravens were able to hold onto those comp picks. First, they signed guard Kevin Zeitler, who was cut by the Giants. (Players who are released by their former teams don't factor in the compensatory pick formula.) Then they waited until after the June 1 (really May 3) deadline to sign tackle Alejandro Villanueva.

Since free agents signed after that deadline don't impact the compensatory pick formula, the Ravens added two starters without canceling out either of those fourth-round picks. Those two fourth-rounders are important for a team like Baltimore, which routinely finds players like Judon in the mid-to-late parts of the draft.

Consider the Julio Jones situation for the second example. In terms of accounting, the June 1 deadline determines how much unpaid bonus accelerates onto a team's cap, which impacts their available space. As part of Jones' most recent extension, the Atlanta Falcons gave the wideout a $25 million signing bonus in 2019 and an $11 million option bonus in 2020. While Jones gets paid that money up front, NFL teams are allowed to spread the accounting for bonuses evenly over the remaining length of a player's contract, with a five-year maximum. This works out well for teams until they want to move on from a player.

Leaving the base salaries aside, this is what the accounting for Jones' bonuses looks like on Atlanta's cap:

2019 $5 million $0
2020 $5 million $2.75 million
2021 $5 million $2.75 million
2022 $5 million $2.75 million
2023 $5 million

$2.75 million




If the Falcons want to move on from Jones during the 2021 offseason, there's an issue: They've paid Jones $36 million in bonuses but accounted for only $12.75 million of those bonuses on their 2019 and 2020 caps. Once Jones comes off their roster, that remaining $23.25 million comes due. While it's currently scheduled to hit the cap between 2021 and 2023, moving on from a player causes the remaining unaccounted bonus money to accelerate into the present. Paying this money for a player who isn't on your roster is what's commonly referred to as dead money.

Here's where the timing matters. If the Falcons traded Jones before the June 1 deadline, all of that $23.25 million has to be accounted for on their 2021 cap. By waiting until after the June 1 (again, May 3) deadline, the Falcons gain more flexibility. If Atlanta trades Jones now, it would be responsible for only the dead money already on the 2021 cap, which amounts to $7.75 million. The remaining $15.5 million would accelerate onto next year's cap, where the Falcons have a little more wiggle room.

Falcons trade Julio Jones to ... Jacksonville Jaguars

Atlanta Falcons get: 2022 second-round pick, WR Laviska Shenault Jr.

The rumor mill continues to focus around Atlanta's star wideout, with Jones telling FS1's Undisputed show this week that he is "outta there." The Falcons chose to restructure Matt Ryan's contract this offseason and then drafted Kyle Pitts to supplement their receiving corps. Calvin Ridley is coming up for a significant extension. Atlanta is in rough cap shape, and Jones, 32, is occupying $23.1 million in room this season, which is the largest hit for any wideout in football. Jones is just beginning his three-year, $66 million extension, a deal the Falcons handed him with two years left to go before the 2019 campaign.

Falcons owner Arthur Blank has already paid Jones $36 million of that deal in bonuses, which is just one of the ways this trade would be painful. Jones is due a little over $38.3 million over the next three seasons, which would be reasonable enough for an acquiring team. Given that the top-tier wideout market cratered this offseason, though, and Jones missed chunks of 2021 with a hamstring injury, what would the market for Jones look like?

There's always a chance that some team gets blown away by the name and offers a first-round pick to the Falcons for their future Hall of Famer, but I don't think that's likely. At this point of the offseason, most teams would struggle to fit Jones into their cap situation, even with a restructure. Outside of the Colts, who aren't the type of team to give away significant draft capital for a player in his 30s, and the Raiders, who are out on their own limb, every team that would be in the running for Jones would have a quarterback on a rookie contract.


Could Julio Jones land in Jacksonville? Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

And even those teams would have some trouble justifying a Jones deal. The Browns, Chargers, Dolphins, Cardinals and Panthers are already set at wide receiver. The Ravens, Giants and Bengals just used a first-round pick on a wideout. The Eagles don't have cap space. The Bears don't have cap space and are already down their first-round pick in 2022.

I think you could limit this to five teams with quarterbacks on rookie deals in the Jaguars, Broncos, Jets, Patriots and 49ers. The Broncos have one of the deepest wideout depth charts in football. The Jets just spent big money on Corey Davis and have used consecutive second-round picks on wide receivers. The Kyle Shanahan link makes the 49ers a tantalizing option, but San Francisco is already down so much draft capital from the Trey Lance deal -- and it will need to use its cap space to re-sign guys like Fred Warner and Nick Bosa in the years to come.

So, then: Patriots or Jaguars? I know Bill Belichick has bought low on veteran receivers before and come away with one of the best seasons in league history from Randy Moss. When Belichick traded for Moss, though, he wasn't taking on much risk. The Pats dealt a fourth-round pick for Moss, who was 30 at the time. Moss agreed to take a massive pay cut and played on a one-year, $3 million pact. I don't think Jones is about to take a similar haircut, nor should he. Belichick just got burned sending a second-round pick to the Falcons for Mohamed Sanu Sr., who immediately suffered a high-ankle sprain and never recovered. I think he would tread very carefully here.

For the Jaguars, though, this deal is plausible. Jacksonville has plenty of cap space, and Trevor Lawrence is at least three years away from an extension. The Jags already established that they want to surround Lawrence with weapons, which is why they signed wideout Marvin Jones Jr. and drafted running back Travis Etienne in the first round this offseason. Etienne is taking snaps at wide receiver in minicamp, suggesting that the Jaguars want to use him in a hybrid role as a runner and receiver.

That role seemed earmarked for Shenault, which opens up a trade possibility. Shenault flashed promise as a rookie, but he was drafted by the now-deposed Dave Caldwell regime in Jacksonville. The 22-year-old still has three years left on his rookie deal, which would make him a low-cost option at receiver for a Falcons team that desperately needs cost-controlled talent. Shenault is not the sort of plug-and-play downfield weapon Arthur Smith had in Tennessee, but there's plenty to like with the Colorado player.

So, this trade might satisfy both team's needs. The Jaguars get a true No. 1 at wideout to play alongside Jones and DJ Chark Jr. while helping Lawrence develop. The Falcons get a low-cost solution to try to start replacing Jones and a second-round pick that projects to fall in the top half of the round. It's no fun to see a team move on from a franchise icon, but if it's going to happen, this would be one logical way for Atlanta to clear out cap space and get valuable players in return.


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This is the ultimate grieving thread. 

The Five stages:

  • Denial - has left the station/is a river in Egypt
  • Anger - alive and well on TATF, as per
  • Bargaining - we got a second for sanu and handed one out for Hurst, so we will get the same or better... right?!
  • Depression - this is most of us, silently suffering with the reality
  • Acceptance - also most of us. We aren't happy about it, but we get it.

But wait, let's add a 6th stage for TATF!

  • Mud Slinging - "maaaan F Matt Ryan and his noodle arm, it's all his fault."

The blame it on #2 crowd? You're the worst. And you're kinda dumb, sorry.

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6 hours ago, JBridgez said:

In my opinion, Julio is done here and will hold out if he isn’t traded before training camp. He doesn’t need money, he just wants to win

If he wants to win then he needs to find a way to score in the redzone. After all isn't that what "elite" WR do? 

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