In the first real shocking roster move of training camp, the Atlanta Falcons have released Jamon Brown, who was one of the team’s major free agent signings just a year ago.
Brown was initially brought in to compete for a starting guard job but ended up falling behind in the competition in 2019. He had mixed success when he got in games last year, and came into this year hoping for better. Between a stint on the non-football injury list and the concussion protocol, that opportunity never materialized. The Falcons have thus opted to go their separate ways and admit Brown as a sunk cost in regard to his cap hit, releasing him and giving him a chance of catching on with another team before the season starts.
The #Falcons released veteran G Jamon Brown after just one season with the team. They signed him to a 3-year, $18.75M deal last offseason.— NFL Update (@MySportsUpdate) August 24, 2020
Brown was one of the two major interior offensive lineman signed in free agency along with James Carpenter last offseason. He was a $4.3 million cap hit in 2019 and carries $6.58 million in dead cap if cut this season (post-June 1st cut), providing $0 in cap savings if cut due to his identical $6.58 million cap hit. He is still due $4.75 million in guaranteed money from the team this season.
Browns battled an illness (not related to COVID) and then a concussion which has kept him sidelined for most of the last two weeks of training campamp. In the meantime, he seems to have fallen far enough behind Carpenter, Matt Gono, and rookie Matt Hennessy in the left guard battle to the point where the team has elected to cut their losses. It’s likely that Gono, the loser of Carpenter/Hennessy, Justin McCray, and maybe Sean Harlow will now be competing for reserve interior linemen gigs.
Brown started nine games in 2019, many at right guard covering for the injured Chris Lindstrom, and posted a mediocre 53.2 overall PFF grade, though that grade was higher than Carpenter’s. Cutting him next offseason would have resulted in cap savings of $6 million, which would have been a no-brainer, but the team apparently felt it was better to move on now, likely figuring Brown would not have caught up to grab a starting job in Atlanta. We wish him well wherever he lands.