One of the biggest needs the Tennessee Titans have ahead of the 2021 NFL draft comes at the wide receiver position — and a certain potential future Hall-of-Fame wideout now appears to be available for trade.
That player is none other than seven-time Pro Bowler and two-time First-Team All-Pro, Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones.
In his latest “Football Morning In America” column, NBC Sports’ Peter King logically speculates that the Titans could be an interested party given their need at the position.
As far as what it could take to land Jones, Breer believes a first-round pick would do it, while King suggests a second-rounder is enough to land him. Because of the Falcons’ need to move him after June 1, any pick used to acquire Jones would be a 2022 selection at the earliest.
So, is this a move the Titans should consider?
As much as we’re a fan of Jones’ career and would love to see him lining up opposite A.J. Brown in a receiving corps. that also includes Josh Reynolds, this isn’t a deal Tennessee should make.
For starters, Jones is 32 years old and on the tail-end of his career. He’s also coming off a season in which he played in nine games, and as someone who is routinely on the injury report, staying healthy doesn’t figure to get any easier moving forward.
Money is another factor. Jones is due base salaries of $15.3 million in 2021, and then $11.5 million in 2022 and 2023, all of which the acquiring team would be on the hook for, as far as we understand it.
The Titans have just a shade over $5 million in cap space, per Over the Cap, and still need to sign their 2021 NFL draft class on top of having more holes that could potentially be filled with more free-agent signings.
As much as we’re salivating at the thought of Jones and Brown being healthy and in the same receiving corps., there are just too many hurdles preventing the Titans from bringing Jones to Nashville.
Look for Tennessee to address their need at wide receiver in the early rounds of the 2021 NFL draft instead, an avenue that would be cheaper and make more sense based on the Titans’ current financial situation.