Cover 9@9: Deion Jones deal could be done today

Falcons' Deion Jones provides an update on his injury during minicamp at Flowery Branch. (Video by D. Orlando Ledbetter/AJC)

Good morning! Welcome to the Cover 9@9 blog. It’s our weekly list of nine things at 9 a.m. Wednesday that you need to know about the Atlanta Falcons.

1. Deion Jones' deal close. With the team set to report for training camp on Thursday (rookies) and Sunday (veterans), the Falcons are wrapping up some loose ends on the business side.

The braintrust knows that it makes for harmonious locker room when some of the top players are being retained and financially blessed.

The Grady Jarrett deal will play well to the other members of “the Brotherhood.”

The Falcons are working on a extension for wide receiver Julio Jones and middle linebacker Deon Jones.

“One down and two to go,” CBS Sports analyst Joe Corry told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution after the Jarrett deal was reached.

Deion Jones’ agent Drew Rosenhaus is reportedly in town and the parties could reach a deal by end of business on Wednesday.

In the past, general manager Thomas Dimitroff has been quick to point out the fine work of director of football operations Nick Polk in helping to get the deals completed in a timely manner.

Deion Jones is set to enter the final season of his rookie contract. The Falcons know they don’t want him to become an unrestricted free agent in 2020.

Jones has been paying attention as the team placed the franchise tag on defensive tackle Grady Jarrett and has had a protracted negotiation with wide receiver Julio Jones.

After Deion Jones, several other Falcons defenders will be up for contracts, including defensive end Vic Beasley, linebacker DeVondre Campbell and strong safety Keanu Neal. Some will leave in free agency.

Deion Jones, who was taken in the second round (52nd overall) of the 2016 draft and went to the Pro Bowl in 2017, understands the business of football.

“The connection that we’ve made through ball,” Jones said. “Like I said, we really believe in the Brotherhood. The time that I’ve had with them has been great so far. I don’t want it to e5. nd to tell you the truth.”

2. Bartkowski story. Our Steve Hummer and Curtis Compton went out to Montana to spend some time with Falcons legend Steve Bartkowski, who with his wife, Sandee, and son Pete are running the Ruby Drake Lodge. Please enjoy this wonderful storycolumn and the photos.

3. Position by Position preview: In order to help everyone get ready for training camp, here's the 10-part position-by-position series. 

4. Signing bonus: Jarrett will receive an $18 million signing bonus.

5. Guaranteed money: In all, $42.5 million of Jarrett's deal is guaranteed.

6. League standing: Jarrett's deal averaged $17 million per year, which ranks third in the league among defensive tackles. The NFL's two highest paid interior defensive linemen, Aaron Donald ($22.5 million per year) and Fletcher Cox ($17.1 million per year).

7. Win-win for both sides. Jarrett's deal looks like a win-win for him and the team.

“Right before free agency starts, I do an article with about 10 to 15 guys and what they should be targeting,” said Corry, an Emory graduate. “I had Jarrett at $17 million per year, but $85 million over five. I had $52.5 million in overall guarantees, $37.5 million fully guaranteed at signing with $54 million over the first three years. So, this deal at $17 million per year doesn’t surprise me.”

The deal gives both sides some flexibility moving forward.

“Four (years) as opposed to five actually makes more sense,” Corry said. “If he’s continues to play at a really high level, he may only play three of the new years and they’ll renew again in his contract year.”

8. Falcons' open practice dates: Here's the schedule of the open practices:

The Falcons open the exhibition season Thursday, Aug. 1 when they play the Denver Broncos in the Pro Football Hall of Fame game in Canton, Ohio.


Monday, July 22

Practice: 9:35 a.m.

OPEN - Gates: 8:30 a.m.

Tuesday, July 23

Practice: 9:35 a.m.

OPEN - Gates: 8:30 a.m.

Wednesday, July 24

Practice: 9:35 AM

OPEN - Gates: 8:30 a.m.

Thursday, July 25

Practice: 9:35 AM

OPEN - Gates: 8:30 a.m.

Friday, July 26


Saturday, July 27

Practice: 9:35 a.m.

OPEN - Gates: 8 a.m.

Sunday, July 28

Practice: 9:35 a.m.

OPEN - Gates: 8 a.m.

Monday, July 29

Practice: 9:35 a.m.

OPEN - Gates: 8:30 a.m.

Sunday, Aug. 4 | Military Appreciation Day at Mercedes-Benz Stadium

Practice: 12:30 p.m.

OPEN - Gates: 10 a.m.

9. DEPTH CHART: Here's a look at the depth chart heading into training camp:


WR 11 Julio Jones, 14, Justin Hardy, 83 Russell Gage, 13 Christian Blake, 16 Shawn Bane

LT 70 Jake Matthews, 73 Matt Gono, 75 John Wetzel, 69 Lanard Bonner, 65 Jaelin Robinson

LG 77 James Carpenter, 60 Adam Gettis, 73 Matt Gono

C 51 Alex Mack, 71 Wes Schweitzer 61 Chandler Miller

RG 68 Jamon Brown, 63 Chris Lindstrom, 64 Sean Harlow

RT 74 Ty Sambrailo, 76 Kaleb McGary, 67 Devon Johnson

TE 81 Austin Hooper, 88 Luke Stocker, 82 Logan Paulsen, 85 Eric Saubert, 87 Jaeden Graham, 89 Alex Gray

WR 12 Mohamed Sanu, 18 Calvin Ridley, 15 Devin Gray, 19 Kahlil Lewis, 7 C.J. Worton, 17 Olamide Zaccheaus

QB 2 Matt Ryan, 8 Matt Schaub, 6 Kurt Benkert

RB 24 Devonta Freeman, 25 Ito Smith, 23 Brian Hill, 32 Qadree Ollison, 38 Kenjon Barner, 30 Tony Brooks-James, 43 Marcus Green

FB 30 Ricky Ortiz, 88 Luke Stocker, 87 Jaeden Graham


DE 44 Vic Beasley Jr., 91 Chris Odom

DT 95 Jack Crawford, 96 Tyeler Davison, 94 Deadrin Senat, 50 John Cominsky, 77 Ra'Shede Hageman, 93 Michael Bennett

DT 97 Grady Jarrett, 79 Jacob Tuioti-Mariner, 92 Justin Zimmer

DE 98 Takk McKinley, 99 Adrian Clayborn, 50 John Cominsky

WLB 54 Foyesade Oluokun, 42 Duke Riley, 52 Yurik Bethune

MLB 45 Deion Jones, 55 Bruce Carter, 49 Tre Crawford, 46 Del'Shawn Phillips

SLB 59 De'Vondre Campbell, 36 Kemal Ishmael, 53 Jermaine Grace, 48 Durrant Miles

CB 26 Isaiah Oliver, 33 Blidi Wreh-Wilson, 23 Jayson Stanley

NCB 27 Damontae Kazee, 28 Jordan Miller

CB 21 Desmond Trufant, 39 Taveze Calhoun, 20 Kendall Sheffield, 32 Rashard Causey

FS 37 Ricardo Allen, 41 Sharrod Neasman, 34 Chris Cooper, 35 Jason Thompson, 43 Parker Baldwin

SS 22 Keanu Neal, 37 J.J. Wilcox, 40 Ryan Neal


K 4 Giorgio Tavecchio

KO 5 Matt Bosher

P 5 Matt Bosher

KR 38 Kenjon Barner, 18 Calvin Ridley

PR 38 Kenyon Barner, 3 Marcus Green, 16 Shawn Bane

L S 47 Josh Harris, 48 Kyle Vasey

H 5 Matt Bosher


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