Julio Jones on Atlanta Falcons future: 'I'm out of there'
Falcons receiver Julio Jones was asked about his future during a phone call with 'Undisputed' co-host Shannon Sharpe, although it wasn't clear whether the seven-time Pro Bowler knew he was on live television.
Last Updated: 25/05/21 6:26am
Wide receiver Julio Jones let it be known on Monday that he does not intend to return with the Atlanta Falcons this offseason.
Jones was called up live on air by Hall of Famer and co-host of sports chat show 'Undisputed" Shannon Sharpe, who asked about the All-Pro's future in Atlanta.
"Oh, no, man, I'm out of there, man," said Jones.
Sharpe proceeded to question Jones on whether he had a preferred destination in mind, to which he replied: "Right now, I want to win".
It was not clear, however, whether the seven-time Pro Bowler was aware he was on live television, the prospect of which prompted criticism on social media.
NFL Network's Ian Rapoport followed up by explaining that Jones requested a trade from the Falcons months ago, with the team open to offers. It also comes a day after NFL Network's Mike Giradi claimed the New England Patriots had held discussions over a possible trade for Jones, with Atlanta reportedly asking for a first-round draft pick in exchange for their star weapon.
Jones, who has three years remaining on his current deal, is due $15.3m for the 2021 campaign and $11.53m for 2022 and 2023, with his salary cap hit for the upcoming season $23.1m.
He recorded 51 catches for 771 yards and three touchdowns in nine games last season after being restricted by a hamstring injury, having entered the year averaging 96.2 receiving yards per game, the best in NFL history.
The Falcons sought to strengthen Matt Ryan's receiving options this offseason by drafting Florida tight end Kyle Pitts for the No. 4 overall pick in what looked like a move to complement the likes of Jones and Calvin Ridley.
Given recent events, it appears his production may well be a replacement for that of Jones.
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