Rapoport says the deal could take a while. However, team owner Arthur Blank has said he’s committed to a new deal and the team is confident it will reach an agreement with Jones.
For his part, Jones has said that he trusts the team and doesn’t plan to hold out from training camp to force progress in negotiations.
“Mr. Blank gave us his word,” Jones said. “That’s golden. His word is that it’s going to get done. There’s no stress on my end. I’m not thinking about it. He makes it easy for me to go out and just work every day and not have one of those situations where there’s a holdout or anything like that.”
Indications are that Jones and Saints WR Michael Thomas should reestablish the top-of-the-market salary for the receiver position once their new deals are done. Cleveland’s Odell Beckham is currently the highest-paid receiver in the NFL at $18 million per year.
Jones, 30, is a former first-round pick of the Falcons back in 2011. He’s currently in the fifth year of his six-year, $81.432 million contract that includes $47 million guaranteed and stands to make a base salary of $12.5 million for the 2019 season.
The Falcons adjusted Jones’ contract last year to pay him an additional $2.9 million in 2018 and included a $4.4 million signing bonus.
In 2018, Jones appeared in all 16 games for the Falcons and caught 113 passes for 1,677 yards receiving and eight touchdowns.
We’ll have more regarding a new deal for Jones as the news is available.