Report: Falcons have tried and failed to trade Deion Jones

Falcons Jones

Deion Jones is the highest-paid linebacker for the upcoming season with a cap hit north of $20 million and has played like anything but the top-earning player at his position. For several seasons now, Debo’s effectiveness has dropped with many concerns about his attitude and leadership qualities. Many speculated he’d be traded this offseason, but nothing has come to fruition. Now, reports have surfaced that the Falcons have tried and failed to trade Jones.

Atlanta just recently placed Jones on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list, which means he cannot be traded or cut but can be activated anytime during training camp or the preseason, complicating any plans to deal the former LSU Tiger. The financial ramifications of parting ways with Jones justify trading him. However, cutting him might not be the most economical decision.

According to OverTheCap, cutting him would create nearly $19 million in dead money with a savings of $1.07 million this season, but the advantage would be him being off the books next season. The Falcons would have cap savings in 2023 of $13.1 million and dead money of $5.3 million. If they did indeed part ways with Jones in this fashion, Atlanta would have a record-breaking $82 million in dead cap, which is 40% of the total cap.

Obviously, that isn’t the ideal scenario. That is a ton more dead money for a team that is already setting records in that sense. If it were the Falcons’ preference, they’d trade him with a June 1st designation. The dead cap figure would only be $5.34 million in 2022 and 2023, with savings of $14.7 million and $13.1 million, respectively.

The Falcons likely aren’t going to be challenging anyone for a playoff spot in 2022, so it won’t exactly create ripples whichever way the team decides. The defense as a whole should improve, so the staff and front office may want to see how he fairs the second season in a new system. However, if he’s considered a negative influence in the locker room, the Falcons might not have a choice in parting ways with Jones.

Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire

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