In two days, the window opens for a potential Julio Jones trade that minimizes the 2021 cap consequences for the Falcons. Wherever Julio lands, the new team could eventually have a different kind of cap consequence.
According to a source familiar with Jones’ past contractual expectations, the team that trades for Jones needs to account for the very real possibility that Jones will want a new deal.
Currently, he’s due to make $15.3 million this year, $11.513 million next year, and $11.513 million in 2023. That’s $38.326 million over three years, an average payout of $12.775 million annually.
Sure, Jones’ current deal has an average annual value of $22 million. His new team, however, is getting him on a three-year, $12.775 million deal. That’s how Jones or any other player would view it.
The question is whether he’ll want a new deal on the way in, or whether he’ll want one after the 2021 season. Either way, the notion that the Jones contract is attractive because an elite player can be gotten for $12.775 million per year over three years overlooks the reality that, sooner than later, Jones will want his contract to be adjusted — especially if he has a huge first year at his next destination.
And that could be one of the various reasons why the Falcons haven’t been able to get their expected return of a first-round pick with no commitment to pay any of his salary. The team that buys the Jones contract also will be buying the reality that Jones will want that contract to be torn up.