South Notes: J. Jones, Titans, Hardy, Jags

Falcons owner Arthur Blank and new head coach Dan Quinn have both expressed in recent weeks how much Julio Jones means to the franchise, but the club has yet to start discussions with the wideout about a contract extension, a source tells Vaughn McClure of Having exercised their fifth-year option on Jones last spring, the Falcons will have Jones under contract at least through the 2015 season, but he’s currently eligible to hit the open market in 2016, so the team figures to open extension talks at some point in the coming weeks or months.

Here’s a round-up of a few more items from around the NFL’s two South divisions:

  • Per McClure (via Twitter), the contract that new offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan signed with the Falcons is a three-year deal.
  • Former Bucs GM Mark Dominik told Alex Marvez of SiriusXM (on Twitter) that he gets the sense that the Titans are trying to generate interest for a trade of their No. 2 overall pick.
  • Andrew Brandt of examines the Greg Hardy situation, which has become complicated despite the fact that his legal case has been resolved. The Panthers defensive end is a test case for the league’s new personal conduct policy, and the NFL’s decision on him could significantly impact his free agent stock next month.
  • Tight end Julius Thomas makes total sense for the Jaguars and should be near the top of their Plan A list, even if he’ll cost more than Marcedes Lewis, opines Ryan O’Halloran of the Florida Times-Union. Besides Thomas, another Broncos free agent – free safety Rahim Moore – would be a solid fit for them in his view.
  • Our preview of the Saints‘ offseason was published earlier this morning.

Luke Adams contributed to this post.

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