Atlanta Falcons WR Julio Jones has come to an agreement in principle with the front office and will report to training camp, per the team.
This means that Jones’ holdout, which looked like it might be a long one as recently as earlier today, appears to be over. We don’t yet know what Julio is getting from the Falcons, but the team alluded to an adjustment in their statement and a larger conversation about a re-worked contract in 2019. Thanks to ace NFL reporter Ian Rapoport, we also know the move is “cap neutral” for 2018, which means the Falcons aren’t in more of a jam than they were yesterday.
The #Falcons and WR Julio Jones have agreed on a revised contract that adjusts his 2018 salary. He’s showing up, as the team announced. This is a move that’s cap neutral, so it won’t affect other deals getting done.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 26, 2018
Obviously, this is big relief for Falcons fans preparing to spend the next month following practices that didn’t feature Jones and worrying about whether he’d be playing at the start of the 2018 season. Julio presumably gets something that gives him the opportunity to earn more money this year and perhaps gives him a bit more security in case of injury, and the Falcons get one of their most important players on the field, where they need him.
The team broke the news late Wednesday night, as you can see above. Here’s what GM Thomas Dimitroff had to say (credit to The Mothership’s Matthew Tabeek for the quote):
“We have had continued dialogue all offseason with Julio and his representation. We have come to an agreement with Julio, and we will re-address everything in 2019. I appreciate everyone’s hard work and communication on this.”
This leaves a lot of questions to be answered, but it’s obvious the team took his threat of a holdout seriously and were willing to blink, however little, to make things better for #11. No matter where your allegiances were as this saga played out, it’s fantastic news, and it lifts a huge weight off the team’s shoulders.
So assuming you’re still awake, go get yourself an adult beverage and rejoice. Discuss!