Despite Thomas Dimitroff’s ongoing vague optimism about getting a deal done with franchised defensive tackle Grady Jarrett, there’s been some growing concern. Namely, the team has been working on a new deal with Jarrett for over a year. Dimitroff was forced to use the franchise tag to keep Jarrett out of free agency. With months to negotiate a long-term deal, Jarrett remained stuck on the franchise tag with only hours left to the deadline.
Per ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Falcons are unlikely to get a deal done.
With today being last day franchise players can sign long-term deals this year, here’s what sources say:— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) July 15, 2019
*Houston LB Jadeveon Clowney will not get a deal done.
*Atlanta and DT Grady Jarrett are unlikely to reach an agreement.
*49ers and K Robbie Gould have agreement in place.
We get a little more clarify from NFL dot com’s Ian Rapsheet, who leaves the door open at least three inches.
From @gmfb on franchise tag deadline day: The #49ers struck a 4-year deal for K Robbie Gould, the #Texans and Jadeveon Clowney won't do a deal, while DT Grady Jarrett & the #Falcons have significant ground to close before reaching an agreement. pic.twitter.com/bt3jTkBP99— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 15, 2019
“Significant ground” is not preferable but gives some hope both sides can meet in the middle. That feels pretty optimistic.
This news, if true, suggests it may be unlikely Jarrett sticks in Atlanta for the rest of his career. Few have played out on the franchise tag then returned to their team.
Jarrett can finish up 2019 and then reach free agency in 2020. There should be a high level of interest in Jarrett, especially by teams in friendlier cap situations. The Falcons are and will remain financially limited.
With the Falcons surprisingly unable to workout a deal, it is fair to wonder if he is indeed asking for Aaron Donald money. Dimitroff has not let top players leave, short of a few exceptions like Curtin Lofton (scheme) and Brent Grimes (wife). Fans may be mad at Dimitroff for failing to get this deal worked out, but they’d also criticize handing Jarrett $22+ million per year.
The front office must be surprised at the development. Through free agency and the draft, the Falcons added only Tyeler Davison. If they expected Jarrett to leave, they would have certainly added a defensive tackle early in the draft.
We should officially know if a deal is or is not worked out by 4pm.