Falcons G.M.: New deal for Grady Jarrett “our priority”

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The Falcons declared getting a new deal for defensive tackle Grady Jarrett a priority last offseason.

Now that he’s on the verge of reaching free agency, there’s even more pressure to take care of him.

Falcons General Manager Thomas Dimitroff told the team’s official website the hope is to get Jarrett signed before March.

We would like to have Grady back for many years to come,” Dimitroff said. “Not only on the field but what he does off the field for us, he’s very important. That has been our focus. We put it aside for a little bit through the season, of course, so he could focus on what he needed to focus on. Now, we’re back focusing on that as really our priority to see how this proceeds, and I’m confident with it.”

The Falcons extended quarterback Matt Ryan last offseason, and also did new deals for safety Ricardo Allen and left tackle Jake Matthews, while adjusting Julio Jones‘ deal enough to make him happy.

But they weren’t able to finish anything for Jarrett prior to the season. He missed two games with injuries (which makes him an ironman there by comparison), and remains one of their top defensive players. He was second on the team with six sacks, and led the team with eight tackles for loss.

If they can’t get a deal done, the franchise tag is always an option, because Jarrett would be in high demand in the open market.