Falcons extend Grady Jarrett and what is next for Thomas Dimitroff

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If you asked ESPN’s NFL Insider, Adam Schefter, and the rest of the minds around football; they would have said Grady Jarrett playing under the franchise tag next season was close to an inevitable conclusion. Shefter even tweeted that out early this morning, but by this afternoon, there was hope a deal could be struck before the 4 P.M. deadline, as both sides were working together diligently. And just before the buzzer sounded, news broke that an agreement was reached for four years, $68 million.

If you struggle with math, that is an AAV of $17 million. It was reported at the beginning of the offseason that Jarrett was looking for Aaron Donald money. Well, he got about half of that, and this looks like a fantastic deal for Atlanta at first glance. They lock up their star defensive tackle and don’t handcuff themselves to where they cannot extend other young players like Keanu Neal and Deion Jones.

Last year, Jarrett had 52 combined tackles, eight tackles for loss and six sacks, receiving an elite grade of 91 from Pro Football Focus – good for the fifth-best among all defensive lineman. He’s always been stout in the run, but it is his improvement as a pass rusher that has made him so valuable. This is more than a fair deal for the Falcons, who desperately needed to hang on to Jarrett considering how porous their defensive line options are around him.

What’s next?

Now that Thomas Dimitroff has completed his top priority coming into the offseason; his focus shifts towards two other Falcons stars. Julio Jones has wanted a new contract since last year; however, he has recently told reporters that he is not worried about it because the Falcons’ owner, Arthur Blank, has assured him an extension is coming. Another Jones, Deion Jones, is also in line for a new contract. The Falcons middle linebacker is scheduled to become a free agent after this season, and there is no way Atlanta plans on letting him walk. Look for Thomas Dimitroff to turn his attention to those two players now that Jarrett is a Falcon for the foreseeable future.

Adam Schefter reports Deion Jones’ agent, Drew Rosenhaus, and the Falcons have scheduled a face-to-face meeting in Atlanta on Wednesday.


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