Should fantasy managers invest in Jacksonville’s backfield?

The Canadian press

Falcon’s trainer spoke about Julio Jones’ future

ATLANTA (AP) – The Atlanta Falcons began their offseason training program on Tuesday without longtime star receiver Julio Jones, who appears to have no intention of returning to a rebuilding team that is still struggling to break below the salary cap. Rookie trainer Arthur Smith was excited about the Hawks’ options but insisted he not disapprove of Jones for voicing his opinion. “We encourage our players to speak for themselves,” said Smith during an interview session that was dominated by questions about Jones’ future. “That doesn’t change anything for us. We understand our plan for the future. We had several private conversations with our players. These conversations will remain private to me. After many questions about the seven-time pro bowler who has been the face of the franchise with Matt Ryan for a decade, Jones turned the situation on its head in a brief interview with former NFL star Shannon Sharpe on Monday. “I’m out there,” Jones told the host of the “Undisputed” on FS1. When asked where he would like to play, the 32-year-old replied: “Right now I want to win.” The Falcons, who are losing their third straight season, are unlikely to do so. Atlanta fired coach Dan Quinn and general manager Thomas Dimitroff after a 5-0 start into a year that ended 4-12. Smith and new general manager Terry Fontenot have made it clear that all options are on the table as they attempt to rebuild the roster and deal with several salary constraints that trading with Jones could ease significantly. After months of silence from both sides, Jones seems to be pushing for an addition to his interview with Sharpe, a photo of the recipient posing with the fan while wearing a Dallas Cowboys sweatshirt surfaced on social media. When asked about Jones’ choice of clothing, Smith called it “irrelevant.” “You can wear what you want,” said the coach. “I do not care.” While the Cowboys might not seem in the market for any other top recipient, there are teams that would surely benefit from a dynamic player who had six consecutive seasons of 1,300 yards or more by the time he went to nine games in 2020 due to injuries Among the teams who might be interested in Jones: the San Francisco 49ers, coached by former Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan, the New England Patriots, who have already achieved great success in the free hand, and the Jacksonville Jaguars backed by a new franchise, Quarterback (Trevor Lawrence) and more seated than any other team in the league. Jones’ status has certainly become a hot topic in the league. Arizona recipient DeAndre Hopkins even sent a tweet – since deleted – meaning he’ll have to restructure his contract if that was what Cardinals needed to take care of Jones. Hopkins was back on Monday, posting a picture of himself on Instagram with Jones, recipient AJ Green and former NFL star Michael Irvin at the 2016 Pro Bowl. He added the message, “Julio, you remember what we’re about Smith repeatedly refused to discuss any aspect of the Jones drama, from reports that the recipient privately requested a deal prior to the NFL draft, to whether there was any chance of reconciliation with one The coach said that every player on the roster was given a game book and all information about the volunteer OTAs (organized team activities). “We have so much respect and appreciation for what Julio Jones did to this franchise here and what it means to this town,” said Smith, “but we have constant conversations about our roster. We need to have contingency plans. “Jones’ base salary of $ 15.3 million is guaranteed and he’ll cost the Falcons just over $ 23 million against the salary cap for the next season. If it trades after June 1, they could split the dead money over two seasons, which would make their dire financial situation a lot easier. As it stands, the Hawks are still billing millions of dollars to sign a drafting class led by Kyle Pitts, the No. 4 overall winner. While trading with Jones makes financial sense, especially given the advent of recipients Calvin Ridley and Russell Gage, the situation has dwarfed a franchise that has never recovered from a 28-3 lead in the 2017 Super Bowl seemed. Ryan made it clear last week how much Jones meant to the team’s success. “I love Julio. I’ve been very fortunate to play with him for the past ten years, “said Ryan.” He is an incredible competitor and one of the best to have made his position. “___ Follow Paul Newberry on Twitter at https://twitter.com/pnewberry1963. You can find his work at https://apnews.com/search/paulnewberry ___ More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https: //twitter.com/AP_NFL Paul Newberry, The Associated Press

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