Sports

Julio Jones signing deal with Tampa Bay Buccaneers, source says

Veteran wide receiver Julio Jones has a new home and has agreed to a one-year deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter on Tuesday.

The seven-time Pro Bowler hands another gun to soon-to-be 45-year-old Tom Brady in Tampa, Fla. as Jones tries to recover from a poor season with the Tennessee Titans.

Jones joins a receiver group with the Bucs that includes holdups Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Tyler Johnson, Scotty Miller and Breshad Perriman, and welcomed Russell Gage — as did Jones, another former Falcon — this offseason. Godwin had surgery during the offseason to repair a cruciate ligament injury he suffered late last season. The Bucs opted not to put him on the PUP list to start training camp, but a source told ESPN they would be careful with him before letting him train.

Tampa Bay also brought in veteran Kyle Rudolph last week, a move to shore up his tight finishing spot following Rob Gronkowski’s retirement.

The Titans released Jones in March, just one season after acquiring him in a trade from the Falcons.

Tennessee spent two draft picks to win him last year in hopes he would bring some much-needed balance to his passing offense. However, he appeared in just 10 games due to injuries and had career lows with 31 receptions for 434 yards and just one touchdown reception. It was the second straight season that Jones was restricted through injury. He appeared in just nine games for the Falcons in 2020.

The Falcons drafted Jones sixth overall in 2011 and sent multiple picks to the Cleveland Browns to capture the Alabama standout. Atlanta, as it rose to pick Jones, traded its 2011 first-round pick (No. 26), its second-round pick, two fourth-round picks, and its 2012 first-round pick.

Jones, 33, is the Falcons’ career leader in catches (848) and yards (12,896) and is second to Roddy White in touchdown receptions (63). His 91.9 yards per game is the best per-game average in NFL history.

He has also led the NFL in yards receiving since 2014, and Evans leads the NFL in touchdown catches (75) during that span. Now they are both on the same team.

Also on Tuesday, the Bucs waived tight end Codey McElroy with an injury designation. A source told ESPN that McElroy will have foot surgery this week after dealing with the injury during the offseason.

ESPN’s Jenna Laine contributed to this report.

https://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/34298442/julio-jones-signing-deal-tampa-bay-buccaneers-source-says Julio Jones signing deal with Tampa Bay Buccaneers, source says

Emma Bowman

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