We’ve got less than a week to go until the Atlanta Falcons kick off their training camp in earnest, and some of the final pre-camp roster moves are starting to trickle in. After the surprise retirement of defensive lineman Eddie Goldman, Atlanta has one open roster spot to fill. Today also marked the official start of the training camp PUP (Physically Unable to Perform) list across the league.
The Falcons joined five other NFL teams in placing at least one player on PUP. For Atlanta, that player is Deion Jones.
We have placed Deion Jones on the PUP list.— Atlanta Falcons (@AtlantaFalcons) July 21, 2022
Jones is recovering from an offseason shoulder surgery that has sidelined him throughout the entirety of OTAs and minicamp. It appears he is still not ready to take the field, though earlier reports indicated that Jones was expected to return for the start of training camp. Arthur Smith is notoriously tight-lipped about injuries, so it’s unlikely we’ll get an update on Jones’ status until he’s closer to returning.
Unlike the in-season PUP list, players on the training camp/preseason PUP list continue to count against the roster limit. However, they can also be activated at any time. With Goldman’s retirement, the Falcons roster currently stands at 89 players.
Once one of the most exciting young linebackers in the league and a fan-favorite, Debo has been the subject of many offseason discussions due to his high salary cap hit—the highest on the team at $20M—and apparent poor fit in Atlanta’s new defensive scheme. The team has been rumored to be shopping Jones on the trade market, but with his health uncertain, such a trade seems unlikely at this point. A post-June 1st trade of Jones would save the Falcons approximately $10M in cap space, while a post-June 1st cut would save just over $1M.
We hope for a speedy recovery for Jones, and a mutually beneficial arrangement for both him and the team heading in to the 2022 NFL season.