Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones is inactive for tonight’s game against the Saints, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. The Falcons ruled Jones out after testing his shoulder strength and it’s not immediately clear whether he’ll be able to play in Week 14 against the Panthers either.
Jones’ right shoulder will cause him to miss his first regular season game since the 2016 season. Through eleven games this year, Jones has reeled in 64 catches for 950 yards and four touchdowns – good numbers in spite of the Falcons’ overall woes.
After signing Jones to a three-year, $66MM extension in September, the Falcons would probably like to play it safe with Jones and keep him out of action, since the playoffs are out of reach. That’s unlikely to fly with the multiple-time Pro Bowler, however.
Jones’ unprecedented contract is fully guaranteed, with all but $2MM being completely locked down at the time of signing. After years of pushing for an extension, Jones set a new benchmark at his position and passed his previous AAV of $14.25MM – good for just 12th among wideouts – on a rocket ship.
The Falcons figure to overhaul their team in the offseason, but Jones will remain the face of the club for years to come.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.