Should Falcons do this trade for Justin Jefferson?

NFL: SEP 14 Vikings at Eagles

The Falcons are gearing up for a highly anticipated 2024 campaign.

After three 7-10 seasons under Arthur Smith and poor quarterback play, Arthur Blank moved on to Raheem Morris, who went out with Terry Fontenot in one swift offseason and fixed the most important position in the sport.

The Falcons inked Kirk Cousins to a rich $180 million deal to seemingly be the highest-end bridge quarterback they could find as Michael Penix bides his time behind the veteran.

The expectation is clear — win the NFC South. Anything less than a division title would be seen as a failure for Morris in his first season as the Falcons head coach. That doesn’t mean this is a Super Bowl-caliber roster.

Jimmy Lake’s defense could still use some talent, particularly in the secondary, but another proven pass rusher on the edge wouldn’t hurt either. Hell, another proven pass catcher to join Drake London and Darnell Mooney could be seen as a necessity.

Well, Bleacher Report sees your WR2 and raises you the best wide receiver in football. Amid OTAs, Bleacher Report ran through the possible trades the Vikings might garner for superstar wideout Justin Jefferson.

Charley Walters of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported that “there was buzz” that Minnesota wanted to move up from No. 11 to No. 5 in the draft to take Malik Nabers and they would have traded away Justin Jefferson if they were successful.

Jefferson is set to enter the final year of his rookie contract and is expected to become the highest-paid receiver in the league, but the Vikings might not want to pay him, and Bleacher Report sees a reunion with Kirk Cousins in Atlanta as a possibility.

Would you do this Falcons trade for Justin Jefferson?

 

Minnesota Vikings Receive: WR Drake London, 2025 first-round pick, 2025 fourth-round pick

Atlanta Falcons Receive: WR Justin Jefferson

Justin Jefferson and Kirk Cousins have enjoyed their best years together in Minnesota. Cousins’ best record as a starter (13-3) came in 2022 when Jefferson won Offensive Player of the Year, putting up 128 receptions, over 1,800 yards and eight touchdowns.

As for Drake London, the former 8th overall pick has yet to crack 1,000 yards in a season, putting up a career-high 905 yards last season. However, much of London’s lack of production can be attributed to poor quarterback play.

Unlike Kyle Pitts, London has never played with a competent quarterback. Marcus Mariota, Desmond Ridder, and Taylor Heinicke isn’t exactly a star-studded cast.

Jefferson and Cousins already have a strong rapport, but would the Falcons be comfortable trading three years of London, who can still breakout as a WR1 with Cousins, at a team-friendly rate along with a first-round pick for Justin Jefferson, who will need to be paid $30-ish million per year on his new deal?

That’s a difficult question to answer, and as an LSU alum, I would do almost anything to have Justin Jefferson in a Falcons uniform, but I’m not sure this deal makes sense for Atlanta.

If Michael Penix Jr. was the starter and the Falcons didn’t invest $180 million in Kirk Cousins, these are the kind of luxuries the club could afford, but Atlanta isn’t going to be able to capitalize on Penix’s rookie contract with Cousins’ deal running in unison.

Photographer: Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire
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