The Falcons as a whole may not have been very good during the 2019 season, but that doesn’t mean there weren’t any exceptional players on the team. One of those players, as you might have guessed, was All-Pro WR Julio Jones, who was named the #3 overall player in the NFL heading into the 2020 season according to Pro Football Focus.
PFF’s annual “PFF50” ranking also had Jones as the #1 WR on the list, ahead of players like Michael Thomas (6th) and DeAndre Hopkins (9th). Here’s how PFF justified the selection of Jones at #3 overall:
Julio Jones is the most productive pass-catcher in football at a time when that skill has never been more valuable. Over the past three seasons, Jones leads all receivers in yards per route run, a statistic he led the NFL in for four straight years. Over almost any time span you choose, he is the league’s leader in receiving yards gained and has now had five straight years with a PFF grade above 90.0, with the three seasons preceding those above 80.0. Jones is the best receiver in the NFL, and he climbs further up the all-time lists with each passing season.
All Falcons fans are well aware of just how dominant Julio Jones is on the football field, and it’s nice to see him continue to garner recognition from across the league. In a down year for Atlanta, Julio still racked up an incredible 99 receptions for 1394 yards (14.1 YPR) and 6 TDs in just 15 games. Each season brings him closer to contending for the title of the best NFL receiver of all time, and he seems to be a shoe-in for the Hall of Fame even if he never ends up passing the likes of other NFL legends. Julio will be 31 in 2020, but has thus far shown no signs of slowing down.
Congratulations to Julio and to DT Grady Jarrett, who was previously named to the PFF50 as the #32 overall player (and 4th overall DT).