Atlanta Falcons: Ja’Marr Chase could help you forget about Julio Jones
Let’s go ahead and start this out by saying no Atlanta Falcons fan is ever going to completely forget about Julio Jones.
Jones has been a mainstay here with the Falcons for a decade and he has earned six Pro-Bowl selections and two first-team All-Pro selections during that time. Jones has amassed 12,896 receiving yards and has scored 60 touchdowns in his career.
There’s no doubt that he’s going to be a Pro Football Hall of Famer before it’s all said and done, and he has done nothing but represent this Atlanta Falcons franchise with class and leadership during his time here.
That being said, no one can deny that Jones is getting older. No one can deny that, at the ripe age of 32, his prime is likely past and we are looking at the downtrend of his career. Lastly, no one can deny that Jones’ contract and the current cap space situation for the Falcons doesn’t paint a promising picture for him to remain in Atlanta likely past the 2021 season.
That’s the reason why the Falcons might be tempted to go after an elite wide receiver in this coming NFL Draft.
And that’s why LSU WR Ja’Marr Chase could be the integral piece to help Atlanta Falcons fans move past Julio Jones
No one said it would be easy to move on from Jones, but it’s something that fans need to be preparing themselves for.
Jones is slated to make $23 million this year and he still has two more years left on his contract where he’ll have a cap hit of $19.2 million in both 2022 and 2023. That’s something the Falcons simply can’t afford.
The Falcons are, however, in position to land the next great franchise wide receiver.
Ja’Marr Chase proved at LSU’s Pro Day that he’s going to be a force to be reckoned with at the next level. Chase ran a blazing 4.38 40-yard dash and measured in at 6-foot-0 and 201 pounds. He had a 41-inch vertical and an 11-foot broad jump.
He was an absolute monster during the 2019 season with the Tigers and chose to sit out the 2020 season. While there were some doubts about what he would look like following a season away from the game, it’s clear that he has been working hard to get better.
Can Chase become the same level of wide receiver as Jones? That all remains to be seen. But anyone who has seen him play knows that his ceiling is high enough to make a major impact and become that ‘All-Pro level’ wide receiver.
If he does that and the Falcons choose to pursue him, Chase could make that potential transition away from Jones about as seamless as possible.