BOSTON (CBS) — Julio Jones is reportedly on his way to Tennessee, ending months of rumors and trade speculation surrounding the wide receiver. The New England Patriots were often mentioned in trade rumblings for the now former Falcons receiver, but it doesn’t sound like Bill Belichick and company were ever involved in the process.
In fact, the Patriots were never really that interested in acquiring Jones, according to SI’s Albert Breer.
The Patriots revamped their offense this offseason by adding receivers Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne, along with tight ends Jonnu Smith and Hunter Henry, but bringing an All Pro receiver into the mix is always welcome as well. But Jones’ age and high price tag — along with Atlanta’s steep asking price — must have kept the Patriots out of the conversation.
I believe the Patriots had some initial interest in Julio Jones very early in the process, but the price point was going to have to change, either with trade compensation or the Falcons eating money. It didn’t, and they moved on.
— Jeff Howe (@jeffphowe) June 6, 2021
Jones, 32, has a base salary of $15.3 million in 2021. The Patriots had the cap space to take him on, but probably would have wanted the Falcons to pay a portion of that salary. The Titans are reportedly picking up Jones’ full contract, in addition to sending a second-round pick to Atlanta.