It’s not necessary surprising when an NFL player backs up another in a contract dispute. It’s also not uncommon for a wide receiver to be at the center of such disputes.
Currently, Atlanta Falcons star wide receiver, Julio Jones, is at odds with the franchise as he awaits a new deal. He has sat out minicamp and it remains to be seen if he’ll be at training camp if a deal doesn’t get done.
“He gotta do, what he gotta do, man,” Green said after being asked about Jones’ situation. “NFL stands for ‘Not For Long’, so gotta get it while it lasts”.
The similarities between the respectively great NFL careers of Green and Jones are uncanny. Both were top 10 picks in the 2011 draft, and they both have 12 Pro Bowl berths between them (Green with seven, Jones with five).
Statistically speaking, Jones has 9,054 yards and 43 touchdowns on 585 career catches, while Green’s numbers are 556/8,213/57. Aside from those similarities, their contract situations are very similar.
Jones is in the middle of a five-year, $71.3 million deal he signed back in 2015. Meanwhile, Green signed his own four-year deal worth $60 million the same year.
While most of us can reasonably deduce the ever-mellow Green simply using player-speak when watching the video, there are potential future signs. With his contract elapsing after 2019, might Green look to pull a Jones-like maneuver next offseason?
There are many sides to another potential big extension for Green. On one hand, he’ll be entering his 10th season and will be approaching 31 years old by the time this current deal elapses. Is it wise to pay big money to a player, albeit a star one, as they are undoubtedly towards the end of their career?
On the other, Green has been the absolute pinnacle of consistency and is one of the best Bengals players to ever don the orange and black. Also at the time of the end of this contract, he’ll likely own every significant franchise receiving record.
And, if there’s a lesson to be learned with losing Andrew Whitworth last offseason, it’s to pay your best players to end their careers with the team—especially if they’re still playing at a high level.
Oh, and just for fun, the TMZ reporter asked Green about Jones potentially joining him in Cincinnati if things don’t work out in Atlanta. Green brushed it off with more player-speak, but just imagine that duo for a second.