The Chiefs were “never truly in” the Julio Jones sweepstakes, according to Peter Schrager of NFL.com (on Twitter). Like every team in the league, the Chiefs would have loved to have him, but it just didn’t make sense financially. Instead, Jones is en route to the Titans, who landed him on Sunday morning.
The Titans shipped a 2022 second-round pick and a 2023 fourth-round pick to the Falcons for Jones. Meanwhile, the Falcons also sent their 2023 sixth-round pick to the Titans in the swap. That’s a far cry from the Falcons’ initial ask of a first-round pick, but that was the best they could do given Jones’ age (32) and contract.
The veteran is owed a $15.3MM base salary for 2021 and still has some guaranteed dollars for 2022. That would have been tough to swing for the Chiefs, who have less than $8MM to work with heading into ’21.
Needless to say, the Chiefs are already well-set on offense with Tyreek Hill, Travis Kelce, and Mecole Hardman in the fold. Jones would have been one heck of a replacement for Sammy Watkins, but it would have come at a great expense.
“If I could play alongside Julio Jones, that would be amazing,” Hill said recently (via FOX 4). “I used to be in high school when he was doing his thing at Alabama and I’ve been a fan ever since.”
The Ravens — who could have teamed Jones with Watkins — reached a similar conclusion, backing out of talks last week. Ditto for the Seahawks, who already traded their 2022 first-round pick for star safety Jamal Adams. The 49ers and Rams also had varying degrees of interest in the multiple-time Pro Bowler, but the Titans ultimately topped every other offer.
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