Patriots: Rumored asking price for Julio Jones means NE must pull off trade

Falcons WR Julio Jones (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Falcons WR Julio Jones (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /

This portion of the NFL offseason is usually a dead zone as far as premium content is concerned, but Julio Jones and the Atlanta Falcons have come to fans’ rescue.

It seems like a matter of when, not if, the All-Pro receiver is traded and the Patriots are reportedly one of the teams in the running to acquire him.

In fact, a report from this weekend claimed they’ve had “internal discussions” about trading for Jones.

While all fans would take Jones in New England in a heartbeat, they’ve expressed a little trepidation about how much it would take to acquire him, and rightfully so, given his injury history and forthcoming entry into his age-32 season.

Well, the Falcons’ rumored asking price for Jones has just been revealed, and if it’s accurate the Patriots have no excuse not to pull the trigger.

According to insider Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated, Atlanta would “probably do it for a second-round pick at this point.”

The Falcons’ rumored asking price for Julio Jones proves the Patriots must trade for the superstar receiver.

A second-round pick? For a seven-time Pro Bowler and arguably the best receiver of his generation who’s showing no signs of slowing down despite being on the proverbial back nine of his career? How could the Patriots possibly justify bypassing this opportunity? They couldn’t.

Perhaps just as important is that New England has often showcased an unrivaled aggression when it comes to pursuing a receiver they think could put their offense over the top.

They famously acquired Randy Moss during the 2007 draft, traded a first-rounder for Brandin Cooks (!) a decade later in 2017, and signed Antonio Brown following his Raiders release right before the start of the 2019 season.

What’s even better for the Patriots? The fact that Jones has already made up his mind about leaving Atlanta. During a phone call with Undisputed co-host Shannon Sharpe on Monday (live on air, though we’re not sure if both parties knew that), Jones was adamant in confirming the end of his Falcons tenure.

The former No. 6 overall pick also nixed the Cowboys as a potential destination, so that bodes incredibly well for the Patriots’ chances.

While Jones didn’t come outright and say he wants to play in New England — a report already claimed he’s eyeing Cam Newton as his next quarterback — this phone call confirmed Atlanta has lost any leverage they had in negotiations.

If that doesn’t motivate the Patriots to get a deal done, then nothing will. However, they better act fast, because as soon as other teams catch wind that the Falcons are starting the bidding at a second-round pick for the perennial Pro Bowler, his market could explode.