Would Julio Jones bring the Atlanta Falcons a first round pick in a trade?
The Atlanta Falcons made a lot of moves yesterday and are parting ways with several longtime members of the brotherhood.
If you missed any of the moves that the Atlanta Falcons made yesterday, let’s sum them up for you quickly. Moved on from Justin Hardy, Luke Stocker, Devonta Freeman, and Desmond Trufant while also sending a pick to the Ravens for former first-round tight end Hayden Hurst.
They had a busy day. But after seeing Stefon Diggs traded for a first-round choice and DeAndre Hopkins traded for a second-round selection, the question popped up, what would Julio Jones be worth in today’s NFL?
No, the Atlanta Falcons should not trade Julio Jones, but the purpose of the questions is clearly hypothetical and truly trying to figure out his value when a receiver four years younger and considered to be just as good as he is going for a second-round pick while a guy that is in the tier below both was traded for a first.
Obviously, the value for any player is what a team is willing to accept and what another team is willing to trade them for. To say it is shocking that Hopkins didn’t secure a first-round pick would be an understatement.
When looking at all the three big factors, age, injury history, and production, we all might be upset about what the market is for a guy like Julio.
Starting with age. Julio just turned 31 back in February. While he is older than Hopkins, Michael Thomas and the rest of the young guns in the NFL, he is still in his prime and has several elite years ahead. He is among the best to ever play the game and the rest of the greats were highly productive at his age and beyond.
Julio’s injury history is not great. Since missing 11 games in 2013, he has missed just four games. However, that does not tell the entire story with Julio. As we all know, he has been a game-time decision and has battled turf toe several times. He has not played close to 100 percent in most of the last several seasons.
Finally, there is Julio’s production. He is the only receiver in NFL history to record five straight seasons with at least 1,400 yards receiving and his current streak of six straight 1,300 yard seasons is also an NFL first.
While he took a step back last year, he was still among the league’s best and averaged almost 93 yards per game while averaging more than 14 yards per catch for the eighth time in his nine seasons. Julio has always been among the tops in the league in dropped passes and only has a career catch rate of 63 percent.
Taking all into consideration, the Atlanta Falcons more than likely would not get more than a second-round pick in addition to a couple later round picks. His age and injury history work against his elite ability as a receiver. The notion that Julio would return a bevy of picks for his services just isn’t true, which works out well since we all want him to be an Atlanta Falcons player for his entire career.