Star Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones is not in Atlanta Falcons minicamp. Jones has three years left on the five-year, $71 million contract extension he signed a few years ago, but his base salaries of $10.5 million, $12.5 million, and $11.4 million over those three years are not exactly commensurate with his talent level given how receiver contracts have exploded over the last few years.
Jones is headed into his age-29 season and still appears to be at or near the top of his game. He’s struggled a bit with injuries over the last couple years, but he’s also shown the ability to play through them and still be effective. If Jones were to wait until his current deal expires to get paid again, he would likely be looking at a significantly diminished contract value.
I care about record-breaking Super Bowl wins and things like that—that’s more important to me, he added.
After the Steelers went 13-3 last season with one of the most talented rosters in the league, the squad remains a top contender to win a Super Bowl in 2018. According to OddsShark, the team has 10-1 odds to win it all, trailing only the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles.
Roethlisberger has been a Pro Bowler in each of the last four years, but he noted other players’ needs above his own in regard to money.
I think there are a lot more, maybe a lot more important people who need to get their deals done now, he said. For me to do it two years out, if it doesn’t make sense for the team, I’m not going to sit here and worry about it.
Perhaps the most notable contract situation is with running back Le’Veon Bell, who is expected to hold out deep into training camp as he did last year. He was placed under the franchise tag but hopes to sign a long-term deal.