WR Julio Jones - Atlanta Falcons
|6-2, 220||Born: 2-3-1989||College: Alabama||Drafted: Round 1, pick 2011|
2019 Week 1 vs MIN (11 / 6 / 31 / 1 rec)
Atlanta kept the tight end and running back at the line to pass protect the Vikings' edge defenders who had the physical advantage, which led to pressure and Ryan throwing an interception into traffic over the middle with Julio Jones as the intended target. The pass protection plan asked the tight end and running back to cross the line of scrimmage to match up each opponent and they were out-matched. Ryan and Jones were not on the same page during the third series, which led to a target where Ryan should have been called for intentional grounding. Ryan found Jones on third down during this series but threw the ball well behind the receiver on a crossing route while under pressure and forced a difficult catch. Ryan tried to target Jones over the middle but Eric Kendricks broke up the pass. Xavier Rhodes faced Jones for nine plays yielding two catches for 15 yards during the first half. Jones dropped a crossing route over the middle when Eric Knedricks wrapped up the receiver on a high third-down throw at the end of the third quarter. Jones dropped another late-game target on a high throw with Harrison Smith delivering the hit ot his back. He caught a short crossing route on fourth down late in the game. A few plays later he caught a fade with a minute left against a rookie defensive back Mark Fields.
2019 Week 2 vs PHI (10 / 5 / 106 / 2 rec)
Rasul Douglas tightly covered Jones throughout the night, thanks to the added confidence of having a safety playing over top with help. Douglas broke up a short out during the first drive and a slant late in the game. Jones and Ryan also had trouble connecting early for other reasons early on. Jones dropped a high-thrown skinny post on third down at the end of the first quarter after Rodney McCloud knocked the ball loose. However, Jones and Ryan rebounded. He caught the skinny post during the first quarter on a 1st and 20. He then made an excellent leaping grab at the right sideline for 27 yards, getting both feet in bounds. Jones came alive in the second half, scoring on the third play of the third quarter on a designed roll and a scramble drill in the back of the end zone and later, a receiver screen on fourth and three and found open field for a 54-yard game winner.
2019 Week 3 vs IND (9 / 8 / 128 / 1 rec)
He earned 17 yards on a play-action dig route to begin Atlanta's second drive and safety Kenny Moore needed assistance after making the tackle on Jones. He exited the field for the locker room. He earned 15 yards on a quick slant to reach the Colts red zone at the end of the half. Ryan found Julio Jones for 34 yards on an out-and-up and Matt Ryan underthrew it to guarantee a catch when the receiver fell down. Jones ran a post-stop route for a third-down conversion during the second series of the half and extended the drive. Jones earned 28 yards for a first down on a high throw of a square-in on 3rd and 12. Jones ran the stop route again for a first down just past mid-field. Jones earned a pass interference call late in the third quarter but the ball was arguably not catchable. The Colts challenged the play and the Falcons won the call. Jones earned a touchdown between two defenders in the back corner.
2019 Week 4 vs TEN (7 / 4 / 52 / 0 rec, 1 / 1 / 0 rush)
Ryan was high of target on a comeback against Malcolm Butler during the opening possession. He earned 20 yards on a well run out route to begin the third series and got Atlanta near mid-field. He dropped a deflected pass on a crossing route in the middle of the second quarter. He followed up on the next play with a catch at the right sideline against tight coverage plastered to his back for the first down. The Titans stuffed Jones for a short gain on an end-around a few plays later. He made a catch of a lowtarget against tight coverage at the two-minute earning. Jones' first catch of the second half came in the middle of the fourth quarter on a busted zone up the flat.
2019 Week 5 vs HOU (7 / 3 / 42 / 0 rec)
Bradley Roby knocked a short pass away on third down and forced Atlanta to punt away its first possession. He earned 14 yards on a leaping catch of a stop route to begin the second series. Three plays later, he caught an over route for a first down and Roby stripped the ball but the ball bounced out of bounds. Tacking on a late hit on Ryan by J.J. Watt, and Atlanta earned the ball at the Texans' 15. Zach Cunningham and Jonathan Joseph combined to break up a slant early in Atlanta's third possession. Jones worked the post to begin the fourth series but Jones couldn't get inside of the safety to reach the ball. Jones earned eight from the slot late in the half to begin ATlatna's fifth drive.
2019 Week 6 vs ARI (9 / 8 / 108 / 0 rec)
Ryan found Jones on a comeback after flushing to his left from a tight pocket for a first down on the opening play of the game. Arizona dropped Jones on a short crossing route to the right flat early in the next drive. A hit dislodged a targeted to Jones over the middle a few plays later but Calvin Ridley committed pass interference and any potential for a fumble was nullified due to the penalty and forced a punt. Jones found an opening up the seam for a quick-hitter on second and long midway through the second quarter. He followed up with another catch up the same seam. Jones beat man coverage midway through the third quarter on a dig route. Jones earned a free release stacked behind Austin Hooper early in the fourth quarter to convert a third down. He worked free on a deep out to get Atlanta to its 30 after Atlanta stopped a Cardinals' fourth-quarter with the game tied in the middle of the fourth quarter. He got across midfield late in the fourth quarter on a quick skinny post up the seam that Arizona gave too much cushion.
2019 Week 7 vs LAR (9 / 6 / 93 / 0 rec)
Atlanta began its offense in an empty set and Ryan found Jones on a shallow crossing route against a zone defense for five yards. Jones earned a first down on an out thrown a little behind him with Ramsey playing off coverage after Jones and Mohamed Sanu worked together on a two-man route combination to keep Ramsey in a passive stance throughout the early phase of the route. Jones caught a crossing route against a blitz that Devonta Freeman picked up for a first down on the initial play of Atlanta's drive during the middle of the second quarter. Ramsey delivered well-timed push on an out route on 2nd and 17 in the middle of the second quarter to disrupt Jones and force a miss. Jones beat Ramsey on a go route up the right sideline on first down late in the half when Ramsey expected a break back to the ball and seemed complacent about trailing. He then got beaten again in third down on another go route but Ryan over threw the ball.
2019 Week 8 vs SEA (12 / 10 / 152 / 0 rec)
He began the second series by breaking off an out route on a play-action pass for the catch one-on-one with a defender and gained 25 yards, mostly with the reception. Schaub overshot Jones on a skinny post during the third series. Schaub found Jones for a short gain on an out but the Seahawks tackled Jones a yard shy of the marker. Jones pushed off Shaq Griffin before making a leaping catch of a fade route up the right sideline. Jones worked through two zone defenders for his third catch on a play action out late in the first half. Jones got open on a fin route and earned a first down at midfield during the second drive of the third quarter. He earned a first down at the end of the third quarter on a curl route off play-action to get Atlanta to the Atlanta 31. He followed up with a catch at the 48 yard-line on a high target a little behind him on a crossing route. Jones earned close to 20 yards on a quick slant during the same drive to get Atlanta into field goal range. Schaub found Jones over the middle at the one between a pair of linebackers with 3:30 left in the game, earning the first down on this third-down attempt. Jones caught a deep out during Atlanta's final drive for a first down, but he exited the sideline with a limp after rolled up during the tackle.
2019 Week 10 vs NO (9 / 3 / 79 / 0 rec)
He dropped his first target on a hitch when trying to turn and look for Marshon Lattimore as he got hit in the chest and the contact jarred the ball loose during Atlanta's second drive. Jones dropped a back-shoulder fake inside the front pylon during the second drive but Lattimore held Jones early and drew the penalty. Jones committed a push-off on Lattimore midway through the second quarter, nullifying a five-yard play to Austin Hooper. Ryan tried forcing the ball to Jones twice during a late second-quarter drive with Lattimore on the sideline but the quarterback was off-target both times. J jones earned 54 yards on a deep over route after Eli Apple ran into his own man just after the two-minute warning. Jones converted a third and five on a dig route against nickel back P.J. Williams--Lattimore's replacement--early in the third quarter. Jones beat Williams again on a dig route for 14 yards to reach the red zone late in the third quarter but the Saints challenged the catch and Jones indeed dropped the ball. Atlanta ran a slant against Williams on the next play, and Jones earned the ball despite the target reaching his back shoulder to nearly reach the same spot. Jones and Ryan had a miscommunication on the placement of a deep target up the left sideline on 3rd and 11 midway through he fourth quarter that resulted in an incomplete pass and a subsequent punt. Atlanta lucked out with a roughing-the-kicker call that renewed Atlanta's drive.
2018 Week 1 vs PHI (19 / 10 / 169 / 0 rec, 1 / 11 / 0 rush)
Jones began the game with a spot-out for 10 yards against the zone and followed up with an end around where he stiff-armed the safety to reach the sideline for a first down. Four plays later, Ryan found Jones on a wide-open sail route on 3rd and 10 to reach the red zone on the opening drive. Jones dropped a pass over the middle to begin the third series. The ball arrived a little behind Jones. Jones caught a comeback to begin Atlanta's fourth series. Jones had to wait on a sideline route during a two-minute drill. He dropped a third-and-short in-cut that bounced off his chest in tight coverage late in the half and it led to a punt. Jones dropped a deep route up the sideline that was subject to one of those minutiae rulings that frustrate coaches, players, and fans alike. Jones ran a beautiful post during the two-minute drill for a 36-yard gain and then an 18-yard gain on an out for a first down. With one second left, Jones misplayed the fade route and couldn't stay in bounds. Most fans will believe it was a bad throw but it was a bad attack of a fade route. Receivers are supposed to jump towards the ball and the ball wasn't too high for Jones to attack with a leap straight up.
2018 Week 2 vs CAR (9 / 5 / 64 / 0 rec)
Featured in the slot as the inside trips receiver, he earned a strong mismatch on the first third down of the game for his first catch. After catching an out at the top of the second drive, he dropped an out delivered over his inside shoulder against James Bradberry.
2018 Week 3 vs NO (6 / 5 / 96 / 0 rec)
He converted a third down with a shallow choice route against a linebacker from the slot during the second drive of the game. Julio earned a first down near mid-field in the middle of the second quarter on a route breaking inside the defense for 17 yards. Jones earned a huge fourth-quarter catch on a 58-yard post.
2018 Week 4 vs CIN (12 / 9 / 173 / 0 rec)
Atlanta went empty on its second third down of the initial drive and Ryan found Jones in the middle of the field while throwing on the move, squeezing the ball between the linebacker and safety to get the offense to the Bengals' 11. Jones converted a third down on the second drive on a quick slant against the blitz and beat the tight trail coverage and turned up field for more to reach the Atlanta 36. Jones earned a pair of key receptions with less than a minute left in the half to get Atlanta across midfield with time outs remaining. Jones failed to corral a sideline route 30 yards downfield and stay in bounds. Jones split a pair of defenders up the middle on a crossing route for a first down to reach the Bengals red zone late in the game. He added a huge gain in the waning seconds on a desperation throw that padded his production.
2018 Week 5 vs PIT (9 / 5 / 62 / 0 rec)
His only target during the first quarter and a half was a short in-cut thrown behind Jones and he couldn't catch the ball that bounced off his hands as he turned into the target. Ryan was behind Jones on a crossing route two plays later on third down but an illegal use of hands by the defense led to an automatic first down. He didn't earn a catch on four targets through three quarters of this game. Jones earned consecutive catches after the Steelers padded its lead to 34-17 in the middle of the fourth quarter.
2018 Week 6 vs TB (14 / 10 / 143 / 0 rec)
He earned a quick throw-out during the first drive and made the first man miss for 10 yards during the first drive. Jones caught a slant during the second drive for a short gain. He followed up on the next play with a crossing route for a 10-yard gain on 3rd and 9 against linebacker Kwon Alexander. Julio Jones flattened an out route due to coverage on a play-action pass during the second quarter but Matt Ryan threw it more like a sail route as if the defensive back wasn't over top and that created an overthrow. Two plays later, Jones lost Brent Grimes on a corner route to reach the Tampa nine. Jones earned 16 yards over the middle with 6 seconds left to set up a half-ending field goal to extend its 8-point lead to 11. Jones earned another slant on third down for a quick conversion of a third down. Jones earned a big gain on an out route off a play-action boot leg early in the fourth quarter. Jones was underthrown on a deep route to the end zone on the next play.
2018 Week 7 vs NYG (12 / 9 / 104 / 0 rec)
Atlanta began with a play-action boot to Jones on a drag route for a 10-yard gain. Backed up at their own one, Ryan found Jones run a 10-yard out for the first down to begin the second series. He earned another 11 yards on a hitch underneath coverage during the third series. Jones gained eight yards on a third-and-long shallow cross for eight yards--breaking multiple tackles--and led to a third punt. He earned 15 yards on a throw up the right sideline with roughly 30 seconds left in the half. Late in the half, Jones got wide-open on a go route and helped draw a defensive interference penalty on an underthrown target to get Atlanta into field goal range. Janoris Jenkins pulled the ball free from Jones on a crossing route in the third quarter after Jones didn't secure the ball to his frame and the Giants petitioned the replay official to overrule the play as an incomplete pass. After the Giants cut the lead to eight, Jones earned a play-action target over the middle and tipped the throw to himself that was little behind his break.
2018 Week 9 vs WAS (10 / 7 / 121 / 1 rec)
Josh Norman knocked away a Julio Jones comeback to begin the first Falcons' series. Jones didn't come back to the ball enough. A series later, Jones earned a catch on a short out for a first down. He earned 20 on an over route on third down for Atlanta's fifth third-down conversion. Jones then got open up the left seam on a deep slant for another 26 yards, beating the linebacker on the route. Jones got open on a 3rd and 13 midway through thye fourth quarter on a deep go against Josh Norman and Norman pulled Jones to the ground for a defensive pass interference foul that cost Washington 47 yards and a first and 10 at the Washington 12. His first touchdown of the season came late in the game on a screen pass where he turned around Josh Norman with a hard stab outside and Atlanta's left tackle and left guard worked inside-out to seal the edge of Washington defense and give Jones a one-on-one in the secondary with the ball in his hand. Jones stiff-armed a defender to the ground to back his way into the end zone.
2018 Week 10 vs CLE (11 / 7 / 107 / 1 rec)
Ryan found Jones on a sit route and he gained 30 yards on the catch and run into the red zone on the play after Atlanta picking off Cleveland. Jones pushed through Denzel Ward on a third-and-one receiver screen for Jones' second score in as many games. Ryan hit Jones on an 18-yard sail route during the two-minute drill after gaining a four-point lead on Atlanta late in the half. Jones began the second half with a 24-yard dino route (in-out-in pattern) with a great Ryan look-off. Jones ended the third quarter with a catch up the left seam. Jones earned a dig route into the end zone underneath Cleveland's soft coverage early in the fourth quarter. Ryan targeted Jones again and drew a pass interference foul on Browns corner T.J. Carrie, which was a questionable call and put Atlanta inside the Cleveland six. T.J. Carrie defended a Julio Jones fade from the one on 2nd and goal with five left.
2018 Week 11 vs DAL (9 / 6 / 118 / 1 rec)
He earned 28 yards to midfield on a crossing route where he earned about half of the yardage after the catch up the left seam on the second play of the game. Jones dropped a wobbly pass thrown under pressure that Demarcus Lawrence disrupted during the first drive. Jones was between two defenders and the ball bounced off his hands inside the Dallas 10. Julio Jones saved an interception when Matt Ryan tried to throw a deep ball up the seam off a three step drop that was woefully inaccurate. Jones tackled Heath and dislodged the ball. Ryan found Jones on a quick slant on third and eight at the two-minute mark of the half and earned a gain of 12 and field-goal range. Jones earned six yards on a short hitch early in the second half. Ryan threw the fade to Jones but the receiver was late to turn to the ball on third down and led to a Matt Bryant field goal. Jones earned 19 on a toe-tapping comeback after Ryan avoided edge pressure early in the fourth quarter. Jones earned 20 on a crossing route against zone coverage to reach the Dallas red zone early in the fourth quarter - Atlanta's firs ttrip there today. Jones had to slow down on a go route to make an over-the-shoulder catch against tight coverage for a 34-yard touchdown inside the two-minute warning, tying the game.
2018 Week 12 vs NO (14 / 11 / 147 / 0 rec, 1 / 1 / 0 rush)
Jones earned most of his gains over the middle on crossing routes and slants. He made a tough catch between three defenders to begin the game for a gain of 12. He got open on a back-shoulder throw between Eli Apple and the safety but Ryan did not place the ball well enough for Jones to turn away from Apple. The target forced Jones to attempt a catch with Apple reaching to knock the ball away easily. Jones caught a crossing route and earned another 10 yards after the catch with less than 20 seconds in the half but as he was working towards the boundary, the Saints' defense helicoptered the receiver and forced a turnover inside the 15, ending Atlanta's drive. Ryan found Jones with pressure in his face and hit the receiver on a crossing route from an off-balanced throw but Jones could only make one defender miss before slipping to the ground at the sideline two yards shy of the marker during the first drive of the second half. Jones earned a short gain on and out against Apple and couldn't earn yards after the six-yard catch. Ryan found Jones for a first down on a crossing route off play-action for the receiver's seventh catch of the night to reach the Atlanta 39. Jones earn a quick slant past midfield on a drive after the Saints went up again by 21. Jones found an open space on a fourth-down dig route with 6:00 left and down by 21 but after Calvin Ridley fumbled away a shot to cut the lead to 14, the rest of Jones' plays were meaningless for all but fantasy owners collecting on thise 11 receptions and 147 yards.
2018 Week 13 vs BAL (8 / 2 / 18 / 0 rec)
He earned a quick nine yards on a play-action crossing route to midfield early in the game. Jones made a great catch against tight coverage for about eight yards against Jimmy Smith on a well-anticipated pass on third and three. Atlanta began the second series with a wounded duck that forced Julio Jones into a jump-ball situation on a deep play-action pass that was way short and Eric Weddle knocked from Jones' grip. Jones dropped a stick route that bounced off his hands near his waist - a concentration drop where he turned his head up field before securing the ball. Marlon Humphrey defended Julio by stacking the receiver and forced Julio into a difficult attack of the ball to force a 3rd and 10. Ryan found Jones on an out but Marlon Humphrey knocked the ball loose with a hard hit but the officials called a helmet-to-helmet hit on Humphrey when it was Jones who lowered his head into the contact and it gave Atlanta new life. Jones dropped a deep over route between defenders where Ryan threaded the needle but a holding call on the tackle would have nullified a catch.
2018 Week 14 vs GB (11 / 8 / 106 / 2 rec)
He was awarded a reception on a fade route up the right sideline that he juggled on the way down and the ball came loose as he hit the ground despite a Packers challenge that took Atlanta across midfield. He was also involved in a close call on the next target--an out where his second foot dragged partially in and then out of bounds--that was called complete. The Packers challenged this play again and the officials upheld the ruling again. Jones scored later in the drive on a crossing route from the 16 and earned 14 yards on his own after the catch for the opening drive touchdown. Jones' fourth catch was a settle route up the seam for six yards. Jones beat Jaire Alexander on the fade to reach the Packers' 13 but Jake Matthews nullified the play with a penalty. Atlanta punted two plays later. Ryan overshot Jones, who beat Jaire Alexander on a deep post, late in the third quarter on 3rd and 10 and it resulted in another punt. Jones scored on a 12-yard hitch in the early fourth quarter after Alexander played too much cushion in the red zone early in the fourth quarter, closing the Packers' lead to 20 points.
2018 Week 15 vs ARI (8 / 6 / 82 / 1 rec)
The opening play was a fade route to Jones on Patrick Peterson that went through Jones' hands. Peterson only faced Jones when Arizona played man coverage, which resulted in giving Ryan and the Falcons an easy tell. Arizona stuffed Jones on a fake toss to Coleman and shovel pass to the receiver inside the five, setting up a third and goal. Jones earned 22 yards up the seam after a fumble recovery to reach the Arizona 12. Jones earned 17 yards on a screen play to the left with a fake toss to the right that set up the play nicely. He dropped a shallow route from trips right on third and one, thanks to a good wrap by Tre Boston playing trail position. This led to a punt. Jones earned two routes at the left sideline late in the half against Peterson and then beat the corner up the left sideline for a 21-yard score. He left the field with 0:13 in the half to get extra attention in the training room due to a rib injury from the diving catch, and didn't play during the first few plays of the initial drive in the second half. He told the trainers on the sideline that he wants to play and returned to the field when Atlanta reached the Arizona 50. However, the coaches benched him by quarter's end after Tevin Coleman's touchdown gave Atlanta a significant lead.
2018 Week 16 vs CAR (5 / 4 / 28 / 1 rec)
Jones earned 11 yards to begin the game on a short pass to the right flat and then was out of the game for the next two plays after facing physical play on the tackle. He was in and out of the lineup for the rest of the drive. He caught a second target during that drive for nine yards as the slot receiver on a settle route under the zone. He earned 12 yards on third down on a crossing route and turned up field on Luke Kuechly to the Carolina three. He scored on a route crossing the end line to the right corner of the end zone on third down to culminate Atlanta's first drive. Jones earned a deep post in the middle of the third quarter but Ryan led Jones too far.
2018 Week 17 vs TB (13 / 9 / 138 / 1 rec)
Targeted on an empty-set slant working from the right against Brent Grimes on-on-one but the corner knocked the target away. Jones earned seven on third and eight, slipping as he tried to avoid Lavonte David. This led to a punt to end the second drive. Jones was tightly covered again on dig route and the cornerback drove on the ball with the safety over top to defend the pass. Jones scored on a post route with 20 seconds left with a good fake outside to the corner and then a strong stab and turn to the post. He caught a short out for nine yards to open the second half. Jones earned a hook up the sideline on 3rd and 10 and worked through a tackle to set up a 1st and goal. Jones earned 15 yards on an out route at the end of the third quarter. Jones earned a 37-yard catch on stutter-and-go in the fourth quarter and took a huge hit on his hip by the safety over top but still retained possession. Two plays later he earned 100 yards receiver, working under the zone and finishing strong through two linebackers for a first down inside the Tampa 30. Jones earned a first down to the Tampa 45 on a 16-yard over route under the safeties late in the game. Jones earned 16 yards on 3rd and 11 late in the game for his ninth catch on a square-in under the deep coverage.
2017 Week 1 vs CHI (5 / 4 / 66 / 0 rec)
Jones caught a slant on a backside slant and spun inside the safety for the first down and additional yards, for 19 off the PA pass. He gained 18 yards on corner route opened by motion of Austin Hooper to same side on out. crossing route to Jones for 25 to get inside the red zone. Then Jones was not targeted the entire third quarter. Jones was thwarted later by a good break on the ball on a spot out cut off by Cooper. Short hook well covered under the zone on 3rd and 10 for a short gain and set up a 37-yard FG.
2017 Week 2 vs GB (9 / 5 / 108 / 0 rec)
He kicked off the game with a five-yard catch in the outside flat just past the man coverage of Damarious Randall. He broke Randall's tackle as he turned up field and gained the first down plus another 11 up the sideline. Two plays later, Jones ran the intermediate slant against Randall for a 33-yard gain off a play-action stretch play. Ryan found Jones on a 3rd and 12 out pattern during the third series from a trips formation where Jones got a free release, caught the ball, broke the tackle, and reached the sticks before exciting the boundary. Jones caught another intermediate cross about 16 yards downfield after breaking a Kentrell Brice tackle near the right sideline. He beat the double team and earned 29 yards to the Green Bay 28. Jones dropped a 3rd and 9 crossing route late in the half against tight coverage from Morgan Burnett. Jones went over 100 yards with a 9-yard gain on a short slant with 4 minutes left as Atlanta bled the clock with a 34-23 lead.
2017 Week 3 vs DET (12 / 7 / 91 / 0 rec)
Jones was double-covered to begin the game on a play action deep corner to begin the game and the pass was over thrown. He took the Falcons inside the Lions 45 with a curl near the sideline and he pushed three defenders for another 6-7 yards. Jones drew a defensive pass interference target up the right sideline on what was really a 3rd-and-2 throwaway by Ryan under pressure that turned into a 22-yard play. Two big Freeman runs to lead off the third series set up a play-action crossing route with a boot to the right, leading to a 13-yard gain and a first down at the Detroit 38. Jones caught a deep sideline route in the end zone on the first Atlanta play of the second half, but his outside foot landed out of bounds. Jones setup a 3rd and 3 late in the 3rd quarter with a 10-yard reception over the middle. He got back into the act on a play-action crossing route, caught the ball for the first down, and earned more after a hard hit to his hips at the catch point. Ryan targeted Jones on a deep seam route on a play-action pass with 10 minutes in the fourth quarter, but high-low bracket coverage prevented the catch in the end zone. Jones earned another first down on a hook working back to the QB late in the fourth quarter.
2017 Week 4 vs BUF (4 / 3 / 30 / 0 rec)
He earned the opening target on a quick out where he juggled the ball against the rookie White but controlled it for a few yards after White nearly knocked it free. Jones earned a third-down conversion on a slant against man underneath and then a second conversion with a shallow route. Ryan overthrew Jones on a deep crossing route near midfield during the second drive. By the fourth series, Jones was sideline with a hip flexor. He tried stretching it out but went to the locker room before Atlanta earned its final two drives of the half and he never returned.
2017 Week 6 vs MIA (7 / 6 / 72 / 0 rec)
He drew a defensive pass interference call on the cornerback Xavien Howard during the opening drive on 3rd and 10 to get past midfield. Jones ran a fall-out in the flat for a quick five. He followed up with a crossing route and he ran through Howard's wrap and avoided the safetey's hit for the first down to the Atlanta 49. Ryan threw the ball low and at the back hip of Jones on a crossing route and Jones dropped it on 2nd and 11 during the third offensive series. Jones and Ryan had a miscommunication on an adjustment where Ryan threw the go route and Jones ran the stop fade. Jones later caught a slant with 0:13 left in the half and no time outs and then a second short pass to the boundary for a few yards to set up a Matt Bryant field goal attempt of 59 yards that was short. Jones took a quick pass to the right sideline on a trips throw-out as the inside man for the first down to kick off the fourth quarter. Down by three, Jones earned a first down on a corner route just ahead of the two-minute warning.
2017 Week 7 vs NE (13 / 9 / 99 / 1 rec)
Although he earned multiple targets and scored late in this game with a corner fade where he pulled the ball away from cornerback Malcolm Butler, Jones and Ryan could not convert big-play targets when it counted most. One of the reasons was double coverage in the middle of the field. Another reason was Ryan and Jones not being on the same page on intermediate routes that also plagued Ryan with Sanu. Jones and Ryan finally connected on a deep out to get inside the 25 of New England late in the third quarter on a pass from midfield. On the next play, Jones caught a crossing route for 15 yards to get inside the 10, earning about 7-8 yards after the catch. Ryan failed to lead Jones on a 3rd and goal crossing route at the end line against Butler, and the CB batted it away. At this point, the game was out of hand and the rest of Jones' work, including a poorly-thrown touchdown was garbage-time production.
2017 Week 8 vs NYJ (6 / 3 / 74 / 0 rec)
His first catch came in the early second quarter on a dig route with a low-thrown target that he dug out near the right hash for 16 yards. He was limited to two yards after the catch on a shallow crossing route prior to the two-minute warning. Ryan targeted Jones on a deep out but overthrew the ball near the front pylon against tight coverage with less than 25 seconds left. Cornerback Morris Claiborne cut off Jones' fade route in the end zone late in the half. He then tightly covered the receiver on an out-breaking route that Jones let go through his hands on third down with Atlanta backed up at its own 1 in the third quarter, setting up another punt. Jones had to wait on the throw, but caught a wide-open 54-yard deep post off play action in the third quarter, setting up a score that kept the game close.
2017 Week 9 vs CAR (12 / 6 / 118 / 0 rec)
The WR ran the deep hook and the defensive back fell during the break, opening up an intermediate completion on the first play of the game. Jones broke the first tackle and earned 34 on the play cross midfield. Four plays later, Jones got open on a double move that ended with a post route and a two-step lead on his opponent, but Ryan led the receiver about 3-4 yards too deep in the end zone. Jones caught a 20-yard dig route just ahead of Thomas Davis' low-side bracket of double coverage to begin Atlanta's second drive. He walked gingerly off the field after taking multiple hits on the play. He walked off the field favoring his hip. He returned later in the drive when Atlanta reached the Carolina 15. Jones got open on a play-action crossing route but Ryan had pressure in his face and had to throw the ball from a position where he could not get velocity on the release and the ball dropped just shy of the receiver's break. Jones caught a corner route for 26 on a pass thrown too far inside, but pressure forced the off-balanced throw late in the half. He gained nine late in the third quarter on a slant and was still favoring his leg after the play. When Ryan was accurate on a deep post on 4th down, Jones dropped the ball against his chest. He earned over 100 yards on the day, but Ryan also didn't target Jones on several single coverage opportunities on the outside.
2017 Week 10 vs DAL (8 / 6 / 57 / 0 rec)
His first catch was a curl of seven yards against tight coverage in the left flat and he had great timing with Ryan. He followed up two plays later with a great extension against tight coverage on a slant on 3rd and 3. He had to leave the field after the play and walk off his lingering injury. Jones caught a stop route near the right boundary to begin the third drive. He worked through the defensive back to get the first down with the move to the inside. He was again on the sideline during the third series, favoring his leg. He gained five yards on a screen pass up the left flat and nearly broke it. Once again, he had to leave the field. He got inside the Dallas 35 on a deep crossing route off play-action for 24 yards. He made a tough adjustment on a crossing route that Ryan delivered under pressure at the Atlanta three in heavy traffic. Jones dropped a 3rd and 6 pass on a short in-cut inside the Dallas 5, leading a 29-yard field goal to extend the lead to 20.
2017 Week 11 vs SEA (10 / 5 / 71 / 0 rec)
He dropped the ball during the opening offensive play after Matt Ryan scrambled to the right. The ball arrived behind Jones, who reached for it but let it through his hands. Jones cut between two defenders on a stutter-comeback route for 16 yards at the right sideline to begin the second Atlanta drive. He earned seven up the right flat late in the first quarter on a hitch. He dropped the ball again on a crossing route against two defenders in the right flat during the third drive. Byron Maxwell pushed Jones out of bounds on a 2nd and 12 streak along the left sideline late in the half for a 23-yard penalty. Lane covered Jones well up the right sideline with 1:30 left in the half on a go route, using his position to pin Jones to the sideline and force an overthrow. He caught a crossing route on a bootleg left to reach the Seattle 25 during the first drive of the second half. He was targeted on a slant against Earl Thomas at the end of the third quarter on a third-down pass from an empty set. Ryan hit Jones against a five-man blitz on a third down in the fourth quarter to get Atlanta to the Seattle 29. Jones earned a step on the cornerback. He was targeted late in the fourth quarter on a 1st and goal drive from the five but he was too tight to the boundary with his route and forced a difficult throw.
2017 Week 12 vs TB (15 / 12 / 253 / 2 rec, 1 / 15 / 0 rush)
His first target was a deep crossing route on a play action pass, but he was doubled teamed and the safety over the top had the best angle to the ball. Two plays later, Jones ran the curl in the left flat for a first down to get Atlanta to the Tampa bay 39. Ryan threw the ball behind Jones' slant route while blitzed by linebackers up the B gaps. Jones caught a near-perfectly thrown 51-yard post route from Mohamed Sanu for a touchdown to cap Atlanta's third drive. Jones made a leaping grab of a well-placed and timed deep out at the right sideline to lead off Atlanta's fourth drive. The ball was a little behind Jones, but necessary due to the coverage. Jones ran an excellent inside setup of the outside break by intimating the post before breaking to the sideline against the trailing linebacker. He followed up with a 15-yard gain on an end around. Jones' second touchdown was a 25-yarder on a great post-out combo to force the cornerback to the ground at the break. After the catch, he dove for the pylon for the score. Jones earned 22 yards on a sail route between the Tampa zone late the half. Jones earned another gain in the middle of the shallow zone for the first down and setup a short field goal with 0:10 left in the half. Ryan targeted Jones on a corner fade with 0:10 in the half, but had to rush the throw and it was an errant target. He led off the second half with a 23-yard crossing route on a bootleg pass. He earned nine yards on a shallow route from a trips left formation where he picked up blocks to the seal the inside for Jones to work up the sideline. They ran a similar play from a bunched trips formation on the following 3rd and 1 play, and Jones earned the first down. After Tampa closed the lead to seven, Jones caught a crossing route for his 11th catch and a 44-yard play. He earned an easy slant under a huge cushion on 3rd and 8 during the fourth quarter to earn the first down and the ball at the 23 of Tampa. Jones caught a 3rd and 8 curl against press coverage and late in the game to earn his 252nd yard of the game and get Altanta inside the Tampa Bay 40.
2017 Week 13 vs MIN (6 / 2 / 24 / 0 rec)
He let the opening series slant go through his hands on a throw above his head. He earned a catch on a low-thrown drag route for a first down on the opening play of the Falcons' third series. Ryan overshot Jones late in the half up the left sideline on 2nd and 4 after the two-minute warning. Jones had maybe a step on Rhodes. Ryan unsuccessfully tried to force the ball into Jones who was working tightly under safety Andrew Sendejo while Minnesota blitzed the quarterback. The Falcons finally began motioning Jones to get him free and used him on a shallow route to earn yards after the catch for a short first down on a tough run in the fourth quarter. Ryan was wide of Jones over the middle on 2nd and 10 late in the fourth quarter. Xavier Rhodes only gave up short passes that were designed to beat man coverage based on defender position and he routinely re-routed Jones with press coverage. Atlanta's staff finally moved Jones around late in the fourth quarter but too little, too late.
2017 Week 14 vs NO (11 / 5 / 98 / 0 rec)
Marshon Lattimore broke up a slant to Julio Jones during the first drive, but the corner was called for holding the receiver's waist on the break. He earned 38 yards on a 3rd and 8 slant at the right hash against Lattimore and side-stepped a second defender while blowing past three pursuing defenders as he crossed the middle of the field. Ryan found Jones for 22 on a back shoulder fake against Lattimore after working from a tight split to work to the sideline. Ryan just missed Julio up the left sideline with Lattimore providing tight coverage. He earned a seven-yard gain with 33 seconds left on a shallow crossing route. Jones had a long gain overturned by an offensive pass interference penalty in the third quarter.
2017 Week 15 vs TB (8 / 3 / 54 / 0 rec)
It was an up-and-down game for Jones. He dropped a 3rd and 5 pass on a pivot route on the opening drive after Brent Grimes wrapped Jones' waist on the break. He then a diving catch near the left boundary, earning eight yards and getting inside the Buccaneers' 30 during the second drive. Jones closest shot at the end zone came on a third-down crossing route for 17 yards through a wide-open middle of the Tampa zone, reaching the Buccaneers' 3. In the second quarter, Jones got open on an option route against a free safety in the middle of the second quarter, breaking the route to a curl and gaining 29 on the play. Matt Ryan underthrew a wide-open Jones up the right seam later in the half because the quarterback didn't trust what was a clear open opportunity and hesitated. Jones returned the bad favor by allowing a perfectly thrown deep crossing route through his hands that could have resulted in a long touchdown in the third quarter.
2017 Week 16 vs NO (11 / 7 / 149 / 0 rec)
Atlanta used Jones in bunch sets frequently enough to keep Lattimore off the receiver. This worked last game and they went back to it early in this one. He earned eight on an opening-drive play-action roll out. Jones worked free to the right sideline on the crossing route. He dropped a 3rd and 12 out route that was thrown late and Marshon Lattimore knocked the ball away as Jones waited on the ball. He earned 16 yards over the middle on the opening play of the second quarter on a crossing route against Lattimore. Jones earned yet another crossing route early in the third series and ran past a linebacker in the flat to earn the first down and a few more up the left sideline. They led off the final drive of the half with a back shoulder fade with Lattimore tight to the inside to reach midfield. Lattimore wrapped Jones too early on a 3rd and 5 early in the third quarter, but the officials didn't call the penalty and it led to a Matt Bryant field goal to cut the lead to 10. ON the following series, the officials ruled there was incidental contact on an uncatchable ball on a go route up the right sideline. Jones beat Lattimore on an out and up and earned three yards of separation up the left sideline for a 44-yard gain.
2017 Week 17 vs CAR (11 / 5 / 80 / 0 rec)
Jones got open on a slant route from a stacked formation during Atlanta's first drive. The first window of Jones' break didn't come open, but Ryan waited in the pocket long enough to deliver the ball from a tight spot to the right has in stride for a completion of 11 yards and a gain of 15. Jones took a huge hit in the chest on the next play, a play-action slant breaking from the back side of the formation. Jones caught the ball but the safety Mike Adams knocked the ball loose. Jones walked off the field under his own power and returned later in the drive. Atlanta ran double slants with Jones and Mohamed Sanu on the right side of the formation early in the second drive, hitting Jones for a first down. Ryan later hung a pass up between bracket coverage up the left flat on 3rd and 8 that reached Jones in stride, but the receiver had to work over the safety to make an attempt on the ball and could not pull it down. This led to a second punt in as many series. Jones converted a third-down early in the second half on a 12-yard out but slipped while turning up field and aggravated his longstanding ankle injury that has forced him to miss small periods of time almost weekly. He missed two plays and limped back onto the field for a 3rd and 1. Ryan avoided pressure off left end and climbed the pocket and found Julio Jones on a shallow crossing route for a first down. He gained 27 after spinning outside a defender on a short look-in and reached midfield midway through the fourth quarter. He let curl through his hands with a defender wrapping his waist midway through the fourth quarter for his eighth drop of the year.
2016 Week 1 vs TB (8 / 4 / 66 / 1 rec)
His biggest play was a crossing route against a busted coverage that resulted in a catch and run for a touchdown up the right flat that cut the Tampa Bay lead to 10 points. Jones dropped a deep cross that hit him perfectly in the hands on a pass from the 40 after getting hit in the back. He was slow to get up and limped off the field after his left ankle got rolled up after he dropped the ball. Jones couldn't hang onto the crossing route that was thrown hard and behind him due to pressure on Ryan. He played the remainder of the game but was clearly hobbled.
2016 Week 2 vs OAK (5 / 5 / 106 / 1 rec)
The Raiders double covered Jones early in this game and it appeared after the first three drives that Jones wouldn't be an active part of the passing game. Things turned around fast when the Raiders let cornerback Sean Smith handle the Falcons' primary option one-on-one. Smith was so cautious about stopping Jones from winning the sideline that gave up too many plays to the inside. Ryan found Jones for a 21-yard score when allowed the inside on a slant to end the Falcons' fourth offensive series. He also beat Smith on a second slant for nine yards in the fourth quarter. Late, Smith gave up the inside on a deep cross and if it wasn't for Reggie Nelson recognizing at the last moment that Smith made a mental error, it's possible Jones catches the cross uncontested and scores. Instead, Nelson made the play on Jones and limited--yes, limited--Jones to a 48-yard completion. This put Atlanta in the red zone and set up the go-ahead score in a 21-21 game. Jones missed Atlanta's final drive with the Falcons up by 7 with a few minutes left and the Raiders still owning three time outs. He aggravated his ankle injury before the drive. Monitor this situation.
2016 Week 3 vs NO (7 / 1 / 16 / 0 rec)
His first target was a corner fade in the end zone late in the half that he caught but couldn't keep both feet inbounds. Jones' first catch was a dig route with six in the third quarter to reach the Saints' 20 for a 16-yard gain. The Falcons' running backs accounted for 71 percent of Atlanta's net offensive yards and it was easy pickings without Jones.
2016 Week 4 vs CAR (15 / 12 / 300 / 1 rec)
The Falcons' top receiver had a career-game with 300 yards on 12 catches. He opened with a 21-yard gain on a max protection, play-action curl route to the opposite side of the field, earning 9 after the catch. Matt Ryan found Jones on a slant on the next play for 14 more and then a third slant on the drive where the cornerback knocked Jones to the ground but the receiver got up fast and still made the catch for a gain of 16. After earning 51 yards on that first drive, he got a clean release on a 44-yard fade route where the cornerback Daryl Worley expected help over top from the safety and didn't receive it. Ryan later underthrew Jones on a go route, forcing the wide open Jones to slow down and give the trailing cornerback Berne Benwikere a chance to catch up and defend the pass. Two plays later, Ryan found Jones again against Benwikere for 53 yards on 3rd and 17. From that point on, the Falcons and Jones abused Benwikere, who tried and failed to press Jones. Atlanta's top receiver put on a clinic with how to release from the line of scrimmage against press, including a slant for a 75-yard gain in the fourth quarter where Jones worked across the width of the field and up the sideline to beat multiple defenders with his speed.
2016 Week 5 vs DEN (6 / 2 / 29 / 0 rec)
The Falcons primary wide out caught a 3rd and 8 crossing route, but he pushed off cornerback Chris Harris at the top of his stem and was called for the offensive pass interference penalty, forcing a 3rd and 18. Ryan later missed Jones on a deep cross from a seven-step drop in the early second quarter. Ryan then overthrew Jones on a wide-open fade up the right sideline two plays later on 3rd and 10. Jones' first catch was a short slant for 9 yards on Atlanta's first drive of the second half. He also found Jones near the Denver 20 on a 1st and 10 pass where Jones made a scramble drill adjustment and the result was a gain of 20 yards midway through the third quarter. Jones later dropped an intermediate cross when hit in the hip by safety Darian Stewart.
2016 Week 6 vs SEA (9 / 7 / 139 / 1 rec)
Richard Sherman covered Jones to begin the game. He jammed Jones on a third down inside the 15 of Atlanta and forced a Cliff Avril strip-sack of Matt Ryan. The next play, Christine Michael scored. Despite Ryan getting hit often, the quarterback found ways to deliver a catchable ball to Jones on some plays of higher difficulty, including a play action comeback to the opposite sideline late in the half, a slant to get Jones inside the Seattle 15, and a deep dig with less than 30 seconds left. However, the dig was nullified due to a Levine Toilolo holding penalty. The Ryan-Jones tandem came alive in the second half with a series if dig routes behind the Seattle linebackers and under its safeties. Jones then got an easy score of 36 yards when Richard Sherman was assigned to the tight end split as part of a twin left set with Jones and Jones drew a confused safety who thought he had help behind him. Jones also had a 24-yard catch against Sherman on a deep out. Late in the game, Jones was targeted a little too wide for his reach on a slant. The ball went through his hands, off Richard Sherman's hands, and into Era Thomas. The safety returned the ball across midfield and it led to the game-winning field goal. Sherman had one last chance on a post route up the left hash but the officials ruled the target incomplete and missed an obvious pass interference foul on Sherman.
2016 Week 7 vs SD (15 / 9 / 174 / 0 rec)
Jones made the first man miss on a short curl-in at the right flat to earn the first down on the second play of the game. He then got away with a drop on a third-down throw with Casey Hayward in coverage that was described in the Matt Ryan section. Jones caught multiple curl-in and dig routes in the open zones of the Chargers' defense, sometimes even in tighter zones between two defenders. He had 107 yards at the half. Late in the game Jones made difficult catches, including a leaping play between two defenders on a dig-route to get inside the Chargers' 40 with 0:01 left, setting up a 58-yard try that bounced off the left (and no-good) upright to send the game to overtime. Justin Hardy: Hardy gained two yards on a short route where he broke back to the ball during the first drive of the game. He also caught a slant for a first down in overtime, which was a tough cach in tight coverage. He is not earning enough targets for anyone to consider him a fantasy factor. .
2016 Week 8 vs GB (5 / 3 / 29 / 0 rec)
The Falcons' leading receiver caught a crossing route from an empty set as the slot man for a first down to begin the second series. On the next play he caught another crossing route, ducking under the wrap of the linebacker two yards past the line of scrimmage and worked up the middle for a first down. In the third series, his opponent Ladarius Gunter was called for a defensive pass interference penalty (a poor call) on a corner route and it put Atlanta beyond midfield early in the second quarter. Jones made a third down catch against Gunter on another short crossing route that led to a second field goal attempt of the half. Early in the third quarter, Ryan tried to split a tight seam on a Jones double move. The ball was thrown behind Jones and despite the receiver getting his hands on the target, hits from two defenders forced the drop and the collision bent Jones' knee awkwardly. Jones was clearly banged up on the play and left for the sideline. He walked gingerly around the sideline before the training staff led him to the table behind the sideline and checked out his leg. Although Jones returned for the next series, he did not see a target until late in the game, dropping a slant in tight coverage inside the Packers 10 with 1:20 left. Monitor him early this week.
2016 Week 9 vs TB (11 / 8 / 111 / 1 rec)
Jones didn't earn a target until the middle of the second quarter. Once he got going, he got hot. His first target came on a dig route from Atlanta's own three during the fourth series of the game for a 22-yard gain. With less than two minutes in the half, Jones caught a short stick route for about 10 yards and then a slant route for nearly 20 on back-to-back targets. In the third quarter, he caught a curl thrown low against tight coverage but Tampa challenged it when the ball appeared to hit the ground as Jones reached the ground and the play was reversed. Ryan went right back to Jones on a dig for more yards on the next play. He caught three straight passes on the first drive of the third quarter. On the third pass, he broke a tackle on an in-cut to get inside the Tampa 20. His touchdown was well-thrown and beautifully caught high-point target on a fade against rookie Vernon Hargreaves. Jones not earning early targets only to heat up later in the game has been a pattern this year.
2016 Week 10 vs PHI (16 / 10 / 135 / 0 rec)
He faced rookie Jalen Mills for much of the day, even before Nolan Carroll suffered a concussion and missed the second half. Jones caught a mix of slants, go routes, deep crossing routes, and a fade. Jones routinely got a step on Mills and had two deep targets overthrown that could have gone for huge gains. When safety Malcolm Jenkins covered Jones, the receiver had more difficulty getting open. Jones also had an uncharacteristic drop late in this game on a wide open corner route that gave the Eagles another late-game drive to extend the lead beyond Atlanta's reach. The game ended with Jones running a hitch and not anticipating Matt Ryan to target him. When Ryan did, Jones was late to work back to the ball and Leodis McKelvin undercut the target for the game-sealing interception.
2016 Week 12 vs ARI (7 / 4 / 35 / 0 rec)
Jones gained six yards on Patrick Peterson during a quick dig on the first drive. He was also targeted deep on a 1st and 10 in Cardinals territory, but Peterson countered Jones' swim move off the line and forced the receiver tight to the boundary. Jones ran an outside-in pivot from a bunch trips left set on 3rd and goal from the Cardinals two and the officials assessed a defensive pass interference on Peterson who didn't hook or hold the receiver. It was good coverage, but it gave Atlanta new life and set up a touchdown run to end the first drive. A fairer interference call on Peterson came during the next series on a slant intended for Jones, nullifying an interception. Jones earned yards on a stop route in the second quarter and then another pivot route against Peterson. Jones then juggled a slant route, losing control, and giving the target to Swearinger for the interception. His best route of the day was a deep out on play action for a first down, making a move inside to fake the dig before breaking outside for 15 yards. Jones nearly lost a dig to Swearinger , who cut off the route and dropped an interception in the middle of the third quarter. Later in the series, Patrick Peterson hurt his ankle/foot on pass to Levine Toilolo that he was running down and was clearly hampered for the rest of the game. By that time, Atlanta was well enough ahead that Jones was not a primary target.
2016 Week 13 vs KC (9 / 7 / 113 / 0 rec)
Jones caught a pair of quick slants and a crossing route to get Atlanta to midfield to start the game. He also had a crossing route to get Atlanta to the 12 after the Falcons nearly blew its red zone opportunity with a holding penalty. He later drew a defensive pass interference foul on Eric Berry on a deep cross on the second play of the second series, getting Atlanta to the Chiefs' 25 in short order. One of the best plays for the Falcons was a 3rd and 7 conversion of a corner route with a shake to the inside for 21 yards. During the third quarter, Jones, made a diving grab on a 1st and 15 route late in the third quarter to get Atlanta past midfield. Although a productive day, Jones and the Falcons had a difficult time cashing in. Jones missed most of the fourth quarter with an injury to his left foot. He was limping and clearly feeling discomfort on the sideline despite not getting any treatment from the staff. He only returned on a 3rd and 1 play as a decoy that helped Matt Ryan find Levine Toilolo on a 42-yard play action throwback, setting up the short-lived, go-ahead touchdowns.
2016 Week 16 vs CAR (7 / 4 / 60 / 0 rec)
He led off the game with a quick slant against tight coverage and a nice release that showed he could make a cut on that foot. He left the field with a slight limp at the end of the second drive but returned to earn a target on a sail route, but a defender held Jones' leg during his release on a 1st and 10 play action pass to begin the third drive. Jones hopped a bit off the field with 13:00 in the second quarter and was not on the field for 3rd and 2 and Ryan got sacked on a blitz with Jones out. The receiver was covered step for step and pinned up the right sideline on 2nd and 10 with 10:30 in the half and forced a throw out of bounds. Jones earned his third catch on a deep slant on a diving grab of a low throw. Jones got 11 yards on a 3rd and 1 pass on a stick route from the slot in the third quarter against a zone defense. Jones had a deep cross raked by the trailng CB to begin the fourth quarter.
2016 Week 17 vs NO (9 / 7 / 96 / 1 rec)
He got open down the middle late in the first quarter but the safety interfered with the receiver. He followed up with 21 yards on a crossing route late in the first quarter, showing off good speed and strength at the finishing collision to earn extra yards to the Saints' three. Atlanta followed two plays later with a corner fade to a wide open Jones for the score. Jones' best gain was a leaping grab at the right hash on a 23-yard dig route inside the teeth of the Saints' zone. He gained 15 yards over the middle during the third quarter on a scramble drill with Ryan in his own end zone. Ryan followed up with a deep cross to Jones near midfield in a wide-open space off play action.
2016 Week 19 vs SEA (8 / 6 / 67 / 1 rec)
The Falcons All-Pro receiver benefitted from stacked formations during the first half of the game, forcing All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman to play off coverage. This gave Matt Ryan room to hit Jones on short passes and Jones room to earn yards after the catch. Jones caught a 3rd and 7, making a nice turn outside to earn the extra few yards for the first down and bounced off a hit to do so. Two plays later, he earned first down on a sideline hitch against Richard Sherman with an excellent break to get Atlanta to Seattlefs 40. This was Jones best play against Sherman when the corner played tight. The off coverage continued with Ryan hitting Jones on a rub route with Mohamed Sanu working a slant under Richard Sherman in off coverage from about seven yards for an easy uncovered touchdown catch to tie the game. Another quick hitch against Sherman in off coverage earned jones 8 yards after Seattle pinned Atlanta inside the 1. Jones then made a sliding catch on the slant and returned to his feet for a run outside for a first down inside the Seahawk 20 late in the half when Atlanta went up-tempo. Ryan hit Jones on a cross on 3rd and 8 to begin the first drive of the second half on a cross from a bunch formation to get the first down. Jones left the game for a while not long after this catch, limping to the sideline with an aggravation to his foot injury. When he returned, he was not as effective, but it was hard to tell whether it was the foot, Atlanta letting Sherman cover him tight, or both. Jones dropped a play action hitch against Sherman in tight coverage, the first tight coverage play of the game with 3:00 in the third quarter. Jones then dropped a short slant against Sherman in tight coverage early in the fourth quarter on 2nd and 10. He was pulled from the game soon after because Atlanta had built a commanding lead.
2015 Week 1 vs PHI (11 / 9 / 141 / 2 rec)
The receiver had a huge night, including two passes over 20 yards up the sideline--a 44-yard gain and a 22-yard score--against single coverage where Jones beat the press like he was swatting a fly. Ryan also found Jones repeatedly on quick-hitting adjustments up the seam where the Falcons were set to run the ball, but the quarterback changed the play at the last minute. Jones might have had closer to 180 yards in this game if not for three nullified pass plays where Jones' teammates blocked too early and were called for interference or straight-up held their opponents. The play call was a quick drag route to the flats where Jones looked great weaving through the defense, but nullified each time. It was mentioned on the broadcast that Chip Kelly lobbied the officials prior to the game about this play and the tendency for the receivers to block too early. Even so, it was a great start to the season.
2015 Week 2 vs NYG (15 / 13 / 135 / 0 rec)
Julio Jones had a very strong performance with Matt Ryan on Sunday and made some very difficult catches look easy. Jones started off this game in dominating fashion as he routinely picked up first downs on slants and quick patterns over the middle of the field, beating his defender soundly each time. The Giants did not have a great answer for Jones who converted a lot of 2nd/3rd downs into first downs by beating his man to the football with his speed/size talent. On one bizarre looking play, Jones was open down field for Ryan but was unable to catch the pass as he was previously forced out of bounds by the Giant defensive back and wisely avoided the penalty by letting the pass fall incomplete. Jones made a spectacular catch deep over the middle of the field in the second half. Ryan threw late over the middle from his own endzone and Jones made a huge diving catch with one hand to secure the ball for the first down. Jones showed off his incredible catching radius along with size to dominate smaller defensive backs. Jones continued to pick up first downs with clean catches in tight windows throughout the game. Jones beat his man one on one on a fade pattern on the final drive for his team and hauled in a well thrown pass in stride before falling over the goal line. Unfortunately for Jones owners, he was ruled down by contact at the one yard line and the score did not count. Regardless, Jones continues to show he's one of the NFL's most complete receivers and can be big for fantasy owners this year.
2015 Week 3 vs DAL (20 / 12 / 164 / 2 rec)
Jones had another monster game, but he and the Falcons got off to a slow start. Ryan hit Jones on a hitch early I the game but then had a slew of low throws that were too inaccurate for Jones to corral in between some completions along the sideline on quick throws. Jones faced physical coverage from Mo Claiborne early, including a red zone slant where Jones failed to finish the route and Claiborne jumped for a near-interception. Jones also dropped a touchdown on a difficult target in third down red zone target with 2:23 in half. Ryan forced Ryan to highpoint the ball into the path of a safety aiming his forearm into Jones' chest to break up the completion. Jones then dropped a play action pass to begin the second half. From that point forward Jones and Ryan got on the same page. Ryan found Jones for 14 on 3rd and 3 late on in this first drive. In the next series, Jones had a diving catch for 22 on a deep crossing route. Although he limped off the field on that play he returned a play later and twoplays later scored on a 49-yard deep cross on 3rd and 3 after getting an easy release off the line and out ran defense across the field before and after he caught the ball. Although still favoring his leg slightly for the rest of the game, Jones got open on multiple look-ins with Ryan for first downs to keep the offense off balance. As long as Atlanta runs the ball effectively, Ryan and Jones will have multiple ways to gouge a defense.
2015 Week 4 vs HOU (6 / 4 / 38 / 0 rec)
Jones had a small stat line because he didn't get a target in the second half. This game was put away early, and Devonta Freeman was finishing drives, giving Jones no chance to even get a red zone target. JJ Watt disrupted a few of Jones' early targets, but in a runaway like this, he wasn't going to have a big game unless he was the one doing the early damage.
2015 Week 5 vs WAS (10 / 5 / 67 / 0 rec)
Atlanta tried to challenge the Washington pass defense with Jones early, but the first pass went through Jones' hands and then Matt Ryan overthrew Jones high and Washington ended the first drive with an interception deep in their own territory. Jones had a chance to make a play on the ball, but it was a bad throw in addition to a mishandled target. From the first drive onward, Jones was consistently stretching his hamstring between series and began missing snaps to stretch the leg. Jones drew an illegal contact penalty on a deep corner route during the third series. Ryan was then on-target on a play action slant to Jones, but the receiver slipped and dropped the pass in tight coverage. Once again, he was clearly stretching between plays and shaking his head while taking snaps off on the sideline and one must wonder if Jones slipped due to his muscle strain. Later, Ryan missed Jones over the middle near the goal line. Ryan later hit Jones on a slant for a first down and more, but Jones could not open his stride. On a 20-yard gain on a slant to open the second half, Jones fumbled the ball and nearly failed to recover it. Although gimpy, Jones got open on a deep route but Washington pressure forced Ryan to check down and Jones was clearly not at full speed. Jones scored in the fourth quarter on a fumble recovery on a Devonta Freeman run stuffed inside the five and stripped loose by defensive end Chris Baker. He made some additional catches late in the game under a soft zone, which padded his stats, but didn't mitigate the concern that his hamstring is getting worse, not better.
2015 Week 6 vs NO (10 / 6 / 93 / 0 rec)
Atlanta adjusted its offense to Jones' injury and ran more crossers and drag routes to give Jones opportunities to earn separation and catch shorter passes in wide open zones. His target count continues to remain strong, but the number of deep targets has diminished greatly. It keeps Jones out of the elite tier of fantasy options until he gets healthy.
2015 Week 7 vs TEN (17 / 9 / 92 / 1 rec)
The Falcons did some nice work to get Jones open during the first half of this game by aligning Jones in trips formations with Devonta Freeman motioned to the single side late to distract the defense. This first gain in this look resulted in a 21-yard play and Jones physically looked sharper in terms of his acceleration. The deep speed still isn't there, but he didn't appear labored this week as a runner. Most of the routes remained shallow crossers, slants, and check-downs and Jones delivered mixed results this week. Some of the throws were off-target, but the majority of Jones' drops came after contact against tight coverage where he took a hit or when Jones was forced to get low on a target and couldn't hang on. His best catch was an out that Ryan had to throw high with pressure coming fast and Jones made the rebound on the 3rd and 5 catch with 8:50 left to set up a first and goal. A short pass to Jones to the right pylon resulted in a 2nd and goal from the one when Jones couldn't get the ball over the pylon before his toe hit the boundary and the Falcons failed in the red zone series, throwing an interception. Jones scored earlier in the game paired with Freeman on a twin alignment to the right in the red zone where Freeman's route worked deeper against the corner and Jones drew edge defender Derrick Morgan in nickel coverage for an easy out route and score. If Jones can avoid any setbacks, he's probably 1-3 weeks away from returning to his dominant physical form and more deep routes will come.
2015 Week 8 vs TB (13 / 12 / 162 / 1 rec)
The Falcons involved Jones early and he delivered, earning 47 yards on his first 3 targetes, including a quick screen for 9, a backside slant for 17, and then a deep out for 21. Ryan also underthrew Jones on a curl during this series. Jones was caught holding on a toss play to Devonta Freeman that nullified a positive gain early. Jones earned another long gain on a quick slant, but the Buccaneers LB Kwon Alexander ripped the ball free and returned it 21 yards. This ironically happened after Alexander had intercepted a Ryan pass in the end zone for a long return with a chance to score if not for Jones running Alexander down from across the field. The play was nullified due to a Tampa penalty, but it's notable that Alexander got some revenge in the context of the game, even if the interception didn't count in the box score. Matt Ryan wasn't deterred by the turnover and continued hitting Jones on backside slants and by the third drive, Jones had 99 yards. Jones caught the late touchdown in the back of the end zone after a Ryan pump fake that helped send the game to overtime. He also broke a tackle on a short out for a longer gain. Jones' burst and staying power with his long speed seems much closer to 100 percent than previous weeks. The deep game should follow soon.
2015 Week 9 vs SF (17 / 10 / 137 / 0 rec)
The Falcons' primary receiver caught a steady diet of crossing routes, dig routes, and slants. The most promising thing he did this week was show off the deep speed he lacked during his month-long bout with a leg injury, catching a deep post. He broke the route from the left seam late in the first half. If Atlanta's offensive line can get healthy soon, Jones has a chance to resume the torrid start to his season.
2015 Week 11 vs IND (15 / 9 / 160 / 0 rec)
Ryan found Jones on a sideline fade against Vontae Davis for 36 yards early in the game and then followed up with a deep dig to the inside for 29 yards to get Atlanta inside the 20. These field-stretchers helped Jones find room on crossers and slants for gains between 9 and 20 yards throughout the half. Although Jones had a strong day statistically, Ryan and Jones faced more difficult targets later, thanks to the fact that Atlanta could not run the ball, Roddy White couldn't get separation, and Leonard Hankerson dropped multiple passes. The Colts knew Jones was the only reliable threat and did not let the receiver get behind them or work deep without two defenders glued to the receiver.
2015 Week 12 vs MIN (7 / 5 / 56 / 0 rec)
The Falcons' primary receiver didn't see a deep target this week, but he had multiple catches in the intermediate range of the field on dig routes against tight coverage. The Vikings risked drawing multiple penalties in this game when they opted for physical coverage of Jones not just at the line of scrimmage, but well into his routes. The risk paid off because Atlanta didn't test Jones deep where officials could have made Minnesota pay. Instead, Jones had to deal with good coverage from Xavier Rhodes, who knocked away a hook during the first quarter. Jones was able to power through a Rhodes tackle for a first down up the right sideline. But later in the half, Jones had a reception knocked away by the safety on a target that was thrown towards his back hip on a play-action rollout. Although the dig routes had success, Jones wasn't featured enough in the deep passing game to help this offense sustain drives.
2015 Week 13 vs TB (17 / 8 / 93 / 0 rec)
Once again, the Falcons failed to target Jones deep. The biggest plays came on skinny posts off play action or deep slants. It was enough for Jones to have a reasonable fantasy day, but nowhere near what he's capable if the offense could take advantage of his deep speed and skill to win the ball in coverage. Jones is a rebounder of a wide receiver and one of the best at it, but the offense is more precision-based than rebounding based. The best opportunity Jones had to score was an improvised route to the end line after the Buccaneers flushed Ryan right, but the coverage trailing Jones knocked the ball loose and Jones couldn't haul in the rebound.
2015 Week 14 vs CAR (10 / 7 / 88 / 0 rec)
The receiver fumbled his first target, a short hitch in the left flat from the slot where Thomas Davis tackled and stripped the ball loose. The ball tumbled out of bounds. Josh Norman successfully screened the ball from Jones on a 2nd and 8 slant from trail position. Norman covered Jones tightly in most matchups with the big receiver, even on completed passes like a 3rd and 7 hook route for a first down. His best play was a 46-yard gain in the second half where Jones ran through a tackle after the catch in the fourth quarter and put a hurting on CB Bene Benikere, who left the game after that play. It was the first route not against Norman where he had some room to run. Curiously, Jones was not in the game for a fourth quarter pass inside the six on 4th and goal, but with Atlanta down 38-0 it probably wasn't a major issue.
2015 Week 15 vs JAX (13 / 9 / 118 / 1 rec)
The veteran earned a steady diet of crossing routes off play action. He did get a deeper target up the left sideline but the target led him a step too far. Jones also drew a pass interference penalty on Telvin Smith on a deeper crossing route later in the game that helped Atlanta answer Jacksonville's comeback attempt. Jones' two best plays in the game came earlier in the contest. The first was a crossing route on third down that extended a drive by breaking a Telvin Smith tackle attempt and getting inside the Jaguars 11. He followed that play up with a drag route off a read-option fake by Matt Ryan that resulted in a score.
2015 Week 16 vs CAR (11 / 9 / 178 / 1 rec)
His first catch came on 2nd and 9 of the opening drive for five yards in the left flat. He then caught the deep out with a great break to beat Josh Norman. Ryan later found Jones on a pivot route to get the first down on a third down after two straight sacks. Later in the drive, Jones dropped a 3rd and 12 target in the short zone to end the series. He caught a comeback on 3rd and long for a 24-yard play, including yards after the catch where he broke a tackle attempt of Josh Norman's for another 7-8 yards. Jones dropped a crossing route in tight coverage that was placed high and in stride but Jones had to stretch and Norman knocked it loose as Jones tried to secure it--a tough play to make. Then Norman stuffed Jones later in the drive on a screen, but Jones followed with a punch of Norman at the line that got him open on a quick hitch for a couple of yards. The biggest play was a 70-yard TD where he got deep on cross against LB Luke Kuechley and Ryan threw Jones open. The receiver leaped above the defender, high-pointed the ball and turned up field for the remaining 20-25 yards. At this point, Carolina reinforced its cautious approach on Falcons receivers, playing the safety too deep and putting the corners in outside position to allow Atlanta to hit inside routes at will between 5 and 20 yards down field.
2015 Week 17 vs NO (11 / 9 / 149 / 0 rec)
Matt Ryan overshot a wide-open Jones on a play-action pass on a deep cross against the safety and it had a good shot to go for a touchdown. On the second series, Jones caught a crossing route for a first down. Later, he dropped a deep comeback on a play-action roll out on 2nd and 8 that hit the receiver in the hands but for added context, he had to dive opposite his momentum for the target. Two plays later, Jones reached the Saints' 29 on a naked boot to the right. Jones got inside the two yard line from a trips set with Jones finding the shallow hole in the Saints' zone. Late in the half, Jones left the field for the locker room after the Falcons scored with 0:26 left in the second quarter to have his ankle taped. Early in the third quarter, Jones made a quick catch at the left sideline for a first down on a short out. He let a curl at the left sideline go through his hands on 2nd and 20 during this first drive of the second half, but the Saints roughed Matt Ryan on the play and the Falcons got the first down. Jones ten caught a crossing route with 5:00 in the third quarter, but left the field after this 20-yard catch because he aggravated that re-taped ankle. Jones limped back in after a few plays and made some pivotal plays despite playing with the injury. He caught a deep corner route at the sideline for a 29-yard gain and caught his ninth ball on the following play, a deep dig to get past midfield with 4:02 left for 27 yards. Jones had an incredible season. If Atlanta can improve its pass protection and get a second receiver capable of beating man coverage routinely, Jones might see fewer receptions but also more vertical routes in 2016.
2014 Week 1 vs NO (9 / 7 / 116 / 0 rec)
The one potential negative with the Falcons offense is that it may have to focus more on quick-hitting plays rather than the vertical game. It means Jones will have to earn his big plays more often on slants, screens, and crossing routes rather than deep fades and posts. Atlanta routinely featured Jones on smoke screens. Jones' first target on this play call resulted in him ripping through a crease up the left flat only to have Saints safety Jairus Byrd rip the ball lose from Jones inside the Saints' 10 and New Orleans recovered. Jones had a couple more smoke screens, but could not break loose for similar gains when the Saints got wise to the call. Jones did gain 20 yards up the right sideline on an adjustment to a Matt Ryan scramble to open the third quarter and nearly scored on a deep slant where he was tackled at the Saints' one. Jones' most "vertical" route was a deep out for 23 yards in the fourth quarter. Jones led the Falcons in receptions, but the distribution among the Atlanta receivers was spread pretty even.
2014 Week 2 vs CIN (13 / 7 / 88 / 1 rec)
Jones dropped a touchdown on a deep pass off play action. The pass arrived over his inside shoulder in the end zone, but he juggled the ball and this allowed safety George Iloka into the play to rip the ball loose from Jones' grip. If Jones makes the snare without a juggle, he had the time to turn away from the defender's reach. This was the biggest play for the Falcons this week because it would have gotten Atlanta back into the game. Jones saw short targets early that were broken up or stuffed by a Bengals defense that sat on the routes early and then gave room to watch it develop and tackle once Atlanta was well behind. Jones earned some deeper targets as the game got out of hand - including a 14-yard touchdown on an out where he was paired with safety Reggie Nelson in the fourth quarter - but if the Falcons offensive line continues to falter Jones' chances to earn consistent down field targets may be limited to the fourth quarter when the game is out of hand.
2014 Week 3 vs TB (11 / 9 / 161 / 2 rec)
With Roddy White out due to a hamstring, Jones was the bulk of the passing game, catching a deep dig off a three-step, play-action pass. He did a good job getting low and under the ball for the sliding catch as he worked back to the target. He followed this up later in the quarter with a touchdown in the back of the end zone on a target over his head. Jones also made a fine block along the left sideline on an end around to Devin Hester for a 20-yard score. He sustained the contact from the 10 to well inside the 5. Jones finished his day with around 8:30 in the third quarter, scoring on a 40-yard deep sideline around to the front pylon. The Falcons' receiver tracked the ball almost directly over his head and caught the ball on a dead run while angling to the pylon - and excellent adjustment.
2014 Week 4 vs MIN (8 / 6 / 82 / 0 rec)
Jones' best play of the day wasn't a catch, but drawing two defenders to the flat in anticipation of a receiver screen that left Roddy White wide open for a 24-yard score. The Vikings did a good job of limiting Jones throughout the day with bracketing the receiver on shallow zone routes by dropping a linebacker or using a safety to undercut routes. When Jones earned single coverage, he and Ryan found their connection. One of them was a dig route in single coverage to reach mid-field in the third quarter and a smoke screen two plays later to get inside the Vikings' 35. Jones also earned an accurate target on a vertical route at the end of the third quarter, but cornerback Xavier Rhodes made a fine play on the ball. The rest of Jones' looks came in garbage time in the waning minutes of the game.
2014 Week 5 vs NYG (16 / 11 / 105 / 0 rec)
Matt Ryan leaned hard on Jones this week. The first catch was a deep out over the shallow zone for a 22-yard gain where Jones made a good catch after contact. A skinny post that was a little high and wide and Jones dropped the ball after contact, but the receiver later followed up with a catch on a crossing route accompanying a play-action bootleg. Jones converted a third down on another crossing route and a third crosser featured one of the best catches of the day--a one-handed stab on a bullet thrown ahead of him in tight coverage. Despite Ryan relying heavily on Jones, the big receiver still had some difficulties getting loose from Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie on a sideline fade that forced a punt at the edge of field goal range. As New York didn't get fooled by the shovel pass in the red zone, the Giants limited Jones in the screen game and forced Atlanta to feed the big receiver on higher risk passes in tight coverage. It's good sign that Jones continues to gain more consistency on tight coverage plays.
2014 Week 6 vs CHI (12 / 4 / 68 / 0 rec, 1 / 1 / 0 rush)
One of Jones' weaknesses when he entered the NFL was his ability to make tough plays in the face of contact. When his back is turned to a hit, he seems to fare better than seeing the likelihood of a defensive back coming for him. Chicago told the FOX broadcast team that Atlanta's receivers weren't tough and the defense believed it could disrupt the passing game with physical play. This week, Chicago was correct. Jones dropped three passes in this contest. The first was a difficult low and away crossing route that bounced off Jones' hands while trailed tightly by a linebacker and a safety coming over the top to clean up the play. Jones juggled a hitch on 3rd and 10 later in the half and as he was trying to secure the ball, cornerback Kyle Fuller stripped it loose. Jones had to scramble around a pileup to regain possession and Atlanta still had to punt. Later in the game, Fuller knocked away a target to Jones late in the third quarter. Jones also dropped one of Atlanta's bread-and-butter plays: a quick play-action post to the backside. The safety over top knocked the ball loose from Jones. One thing that did work out for the first time since Week 1 was the wide receiver screen. Atlanta found Jones for a strong gain of over 20 yards when it ran play action with a pulling guard before delivering the ball to Jones on the trips side. Jones had a reverse that he took up field for a first down, but his teammate Roddy White was called for holding and it nullified the run. Jones did have some decent plays to salvage what was otherwise a bad day, including a 29-yard reception on a skinny post where Jones did a fine job of leading the defensive back outside before a quick break inside.
2014 Week 7 vs BAL (8 / 5 / 56 / 0 rec)
Jones, like the rest of the passing offense, suffered because of the offensive line's lackluster performance. Atlanta had to target Jones on short passes and this made it difficult to sustain drives. Jones gained six up the right sideline on third and long on the opening drive that began deep in their own area of the field. This was a quick throw and Baltimore stymied Jones easily. There was another quick throw outside in the third series for a seven-yard gain and then a 2nd-and-long screen where he stiff- armed safety Darian Stewart in the flat for good yardage to set up a 3rd and 10. Jones' next target didn't come until the mid-fourth quarter on a 24-yard skinny post when the Baltimore defense stopped sitting on routes. Jones left of the sideline with a slight limp that he was trying to walk off. During garbage time, Ryan almost found Jones on a deep fade of 34 yards, but Ryan targeted Jones' outside shoulder and Jones was initially looking to his inside. As long as Atlanta's offensive line is this weak, Jones' upside has a boom-bust quality.
2014 Week 8 vs DET (6 / 4 / 58 / 0 rec)
Matt Ryan tried to find Jones deep a couple of times in this game, but the Falcons' line doesn't give the quarterback enough time to throw vertical routes with the confidence and timing to hit them consistently. He missed Jones late in the half on a sideline fade that Jones caught but the placement was too far outside the boundary. Jones did force the Detroit defense to commit pass interference in the end zone and it set up a score. Otherwise, Jones' best play was a 22-yard gain ona screen pass at the two minute warning that could have allowed Atlanta to kneel on the ball and end the game, but the Falcons got too cute and gave Detroit a final chance to win the game, which the Lions did. Jones looks healthy enough to contribute, but until Atlanta's offensive line can buy time for Ryan to throw deep, Jones is fantasy starter with boom-bust upside.
2014 Week 10 vs TB (11 / 8 / 119 / 0 rec)
The receiver dropped a deep, play-action pass that was a little behind him after breaking free and in position to run under the ball unfettered for a 60-yard score. Instead, Jones had to turn towards Matt Ryan's 55-yard throw that hung in the air and allow the trailing defender a shot at knocking the ball loose from Jones' grip. Jones also dropped an easy smoke screen in the second quarter. These were his worst plays of the day, but they didn't overshadow his best. Jones gained 39 yards on a slant to the Tampa Bay 10 after this second drop, setting up a field goal. He also caught a deep dig with 0:17 left in the half to get inside the Buccaneers 35 to set up a second kick. During the third quarter, Jones limped off the field holding the back of his right knee, missing part of a series, including a third-down passing situation. After stretching out the leg and riding an exercise bike for a few minutes, Jones returned to the game and earned nearly 120 yards this week.
2014 Week 11 vs CAR (11 / 6 / 59 / 0 rec)
Atlanta's big play receiver earned the first, first down of the game for the Falcons at the top of the second quarter on a slant. He also made a leaping catch on an out route during the first possession of the second quarter to get inside the Carolina 40 for the next first down. Matt Ryan tried to target Jones twice in this game on its oft-used smash screen, but Carolina anticipated both plays and broke them up. Ryan's placement was also off-target. Carolina also did a good job defending a slant in the second quarter, but Jones managed to make a couple of plays that set up field goals at the end of each half. Atlanta's line did not afford Ryan to target Jones deep in this game.
2014 Week 12 vs CLE (13 / 5 / 68 / 1 rec)
Both Jones and his quarterback were responsible for a day that could have been much better than it was. Jones dropped an easy out to the flat and let the ball into his body before Buster Skrine cleaned up the play on 2nd and 7 near midfield on the initial drive. He also dropped a ball at his back shoulder on a double move with a slant and go up the left sideline, but the throw was also behind Jones, who would have scored if Ryan placed the ball ahead of the receiver. Ryan later targeted Jones on a deep out where Joe Haden read the quarterback, undercut the route, and made a leaping catch in perfect position ahead of Jones for the interception. There was also a sideline fade in the second half where Jones made his leaping attempt a step too early and the ball went through his outstretched fingertips. Jones knocked away what looked like a certain interception for Buster Skrine in the fourth quarter that would have sealed the game for Cleveland. It was a solid fantasy day for Jones due to the touchdown, but his upside remains limited because the vertical passing game is limited by the Falcons offensive line and Ryan's propensity for deep throws that lack velocity and distance due in part to the incoming defensive pressure.
2014 Week 13 vs ARI (12 / 10 / 189 / 1 rec)
It was a career day for Jones, who learned this week that Patrick Peterson gave the receiver some bulletin board material through the media when the corner asked his team to put him exclusively on Jones. Although Jones had a fine day, Peterson's day was equally bad. Of the 10 catches Jones' earned in this game, only twice did Peterson try to jam the receiver at the line of scrimmage. Even then, Peterson failed to get his hands on his opponent early enough to alter a route down field and it drew a defensive penalty on one of them late in the second half that resulted in a 41-yard gain on a catch that Arizona should have challenged because Jones didn't get both feet in bounds. On the other, Jones made a leaping catch on a slant to begin the day with a 24-yard gain to get Atlanta to the Cardinals' five yard-line after working off Peterson's press technique. Otherwise, Peterson offered no resistance off the line for Jones on a fade up the left sideline for a 30-yard score and later a skinny post late in the first quarter that put Atlanta near the red zone. Jones also blew by Peterson in the flats to get Atlanta into scoring position multiple times in this game. Jones even made a nice block on a crossing route to Harry Douglas that opened a 14-yard gain on the third series of the day. The only negatives involving Jones were a near-interception at the goal line when slot cornerback Jerraud Powers read Matt Ryan's eyes and abandoned his assignment to jump Jones' shallow cross to foil a touchdown and a pick-six in the first half where Rashad Johnson came over top Jones' deep slant and took it 88 yards through the Atlanta offense.
2014 Week 14 vs GB (17 / 11 / 259 / 1 rec)
It was a career night for Jones, whose 250-yard outing was a fine display of aggressive work between the receiver and his quarterback as well as poor work from the Packers defense. Ryan found Jones at the Packers' 25 on a sideline curl against Sam Shields in the first series. Then Jones settled in the left flat for eight yards at the left hash to set up a third and seven where he caught a quick-hitter up the seam past Micah Hyde and ran through a tackle to get inside the five to set up a Steven Jackson touchdown. Ryan later earned enough time on a seven-step drop in the mid-second quarter to hit Jones on a 17-yard crossing route at the left hash. Jones nearly lost the ball, but gained 25 yards with his run after the catch. Then Ryan overshot Jones up the left seam late in the first half on third down and forced a punt, but Ryan later found Jones on a deep slant that got Atlanta to mid-field with less than 30 seconds in the half--a gain of nearly 30 yards. In the second half, Ryan and Jones caught fire thanks to cornerbacks that refused to jam Jones and a Packers defense that continued to use single coverage on the receiver. Ryan found Jones on the first play of the second half on a deep slant and go Jones sold as well as any route I've seen him run. Jones caught the ball at the 50 and weaved through a part of the Packers' secondary for a 79-yard gain to the Green Bay 3. On the next series, Ryan threw a quick play-action pass to Jones in end zone, but Jones caught it out of bounds. Green Bay finally bracketed Jones after the receiver earned 179 yards on the night, but Atlanta countered by moving Jones to the slot on several plays. Ryan targeted Jones early in the fourth quarter for a 12-yard gain. Jones only true mistake was an illegal shift that nullified a gain by Steven Jackson to get inside the 15 of Green Bay, but the receiver made up for it with a spinning grab on Sam Shields , who didn't even try to jam the red-hot Jones. The play resulted in a touchdown and Jones had over 200 yards by the middle of the fourth quarter while cutting the lead to 10 points. Jones got open in the left flat once again in the early fourth quarter on the next drive to up his total to 232 yards. At this point, Green Bay finally broke up a target to Jones in single coverage, thanks to a diving play by Davon House. However, Jones still got wide open against a blitz to reach to the Green Bay 33 and reach the 250-yard mark. Jones' stamina became an issue and he had to leave the field to get a breather after the next snap. Later in the series, House defended a fade in the end zone and nearly intercepted the ball if not for Jones making a good play on the defender. Jones finished the game with reception for the first down inside the Packers' five on a route from the slot, breaking a tackle in the process. However, Jones left the game holding his side a play later and with five minutes left, he sat out the rest of the contest due to what was initially called a hip injury.
2014 Week 16 vs NO (8 / 7 / 107 / 0 rec)
Atlanta's big-play threat performed admirably with an injured oblique that cost him last week's game. He didn't play every series, but he did an excellent job despite rotating in and out of the lineup frequently. He opened the game with a leaping, turning catch on a back-shoulder fade with excellent extension of his arms to the ball while wrapped, gaining 23 yards on the second play of the game. He missed some time in the second quarter, but he returned with a tough play up the left sideline for a first down, breaking tackles and fighting for yards. He later caught a 3rd and 10 skinny post in stride for a 23-yard gain to get Atlanta inside the Saints' five. Despite missing intermittent amounts of time he was productive and integral to the offense: He opened the second half with a gain of eight; caught a comeback later in the quarter and earned a tough 5-6 yards after the catch; and then earned over 100 yards for the day on a deep out. Don't worry about his health moving forward.
2014 Week 17 vs CAR (8 / 4 / 58 / 0 rec)
The Falcons' star only had a few catches in the first half. He did his best work on dig routes on Sunday. What hurt his productivity was the pressure that forced Matt Ryan to abandon early reads, which are often going Jones' way. When Ryan found a way to target Jones on perimeter routes, Josh Norman had the luxury to play off Jones and cut off the throws, nearly intercepting multiple passes on the day. When Atlanta lacks time, Jones production becomes a bigger issue.
2013 Week 1 vs NO (9 / 7 / 76 / 1 rec)
The ineffectiveness of Roddy White hurt Jones' game in the sense that the Falcons had to use Jones in three-receiver groupings to flood zones and prevent consistent double coverage. The bigger issue for Jones was the Falcons' offensive line. The front five allowed too much pressure for Matt Ryan to look deep to his receivers and this restricted White to screens, seams, and crossing routes. One of Jones' best plays of the day was also his worst: a play-action dig route where he fought for additional yards, but the Saints defensive backs stripped the ball from Jones' grasp as he extended his body forward. Nearly a third of Jones' yards (22) came on the final drive against a two-minute offense on a seam route. He also made a fine, back-shoulder catch on a slant that Ryan placed there by design. Throw in a score on a crossing route and Jones had a solid afternoon, but his big-play upside might be in purgatory until the Falcons' line and Roddy White can perform better.
2013 Week 2 vs STL (14 / 11 / 182 / 1 rec)
Jones had moments this week where he carried this offense. The screen game was a big part of it, but it didn't start off with much success. He was held to four yards on the first two screens in the first quarter. Later he couldn't bring a sideline fade inbounds against Janoris Jenkins. The corner pushed Jones out of bounds after Jones made a full extension on the ball. But Jones followed up later in the quarter with a seam route on third-an-one where he made a move inside that fooled Jenkins and then bent the break outside the corner to catch the target in stride, break the corner's wrap and take the ball a remaining 60 yards for an 81-yard score. While the Falcons were silent in the third quarter on offense, Jones helped revive the unit in the fourth quarter on a scoring drive where the receiver caught three straight passes, including two screens. One was a 16-yard run where he hurdled a defender's wrap attempt to get down field. Another was a third-down reception between two defenders in zone after he worked to the middle of the field to get open for his quarterback, who was forced from the pocket. He did an especially good job hanging onto the ball after sandwiched by both defenders.
2013 Week 3 vs MIA (12 / 9 / 115 / 0 rec, 1 / 7 / 0 rush)
Jones made some nice plays, but it's clear that the Falcons miss a healthy Roddy White in the primary role. Jones was often used on crossing routes, screens, and square-in routes and he did a fine job on these short passes to make the play. However, the Falcons weren't confident in its pass protection to go deep with play action and its only intermediate route was a first-half sideline fade that Jones extended to catch, but then dropped when the safety Rashad Jones delivered a hit to Jones' back and the receiver dropped the ball. Whenever Jones was matched with Nolan Carroll, the defensive back looked overwhelmed. Carroll allowed Jones to post up on a play that he had room to defend but seemed a step slow to reaction in this game. Until Roddy White can return to form, Jones will see a safety over top on intermediate and deep routes and the Falcons lack the protection up front to take a lot of shots without White opening the field so Atlanta can use Jones on the twins or trips alignments to cross up zone assignments.
2013 Week 4 vs NE (13 / 6 / 108 / 0 rec)
The third-year receiver had a fine game in the box score and excellent moments, but some of those opportunities came courtesy of New England changing its priority from stopping Jones to limiting Tony Gonzalez. Jones dropped three passes in this game, two of them in situations where the Patriots placed a defender over top to allow an underneath defensive back to watch the quarterback and earn position under Jones to force a tight-window throw that the receiver couldn't handle. Jones also dropped a crossing route that was placed a little behind the receiver but should have been caught and this forced a punt in the third quarter. Jones also couldn't beat Aqib Talib in single coverage on a slant route on the play before. Talib played well as a man-to-man safety in this game against both White and Jones. This included a deep sideline route against Talib, but mistimed his leap over top and behind the defender inside the five. In the fourth quarter, Talib earned inside position on a streak up th right sideline and never gave it up, intercepting a deep pass with 9:35 left on the first play of the series. Despite these struggles, Jones also came up big in moments the Falcons needed him most. He injured his knee in the fourth quarter on a pass at the right sideline, taking a hit to his hip and landing on his knee while fumbling the ball out of bounds. If not for issues with the replay equipment, Bill Belichick might have succeeded in having the play ruled an incomplete pass because it was that close a call. Jones limped off the field and missed the remainder of the series. However when the Falcons scored a touchdown and closed within 10 points, Jones returned to the game and despite being gimpy between plays, he got down field and made two excellent plays. The first was a fade where Jones earned separation with a late push on the defender and caught the ball over his head with his back to the boundary as he exited the sideline with two feet inbounds. On the final drive, he made a fantastic, catch over his inside shoulder in the tightest of coverage on a perfect throw to get the Falcons into Patriots territory. Monitor Jones' injury because the adrenaline of the situation might make it appear less serious than it might be once Jones' body cools down. Jones played well enough that he should be good to go next week despite the minor concern.
2013 Week 5 vs NYJ (11 / 8 / 99 / 0 rec)
Jones made several fine plays on Monday night. He scooped up a loose ball for an extra 15 yards after Roddy White had the ball knocked free on a quick slant in the first quarter. Jones then earned a nice gain on a corner route against two-deep zone in the late second quarter to get inside the Jets' 25 yard line. However, Jones really didn't earn opportunities to shine until the fourth quarter when the Falcons were down by double digits. Jones made a diving attempt on a go route in the end zone that he nearly secured if not for a fine play by Antonio Cromartie ripping the receiver's arms at the last second. In the following series, Jones juggled a sideline fade and lost control before exiting the boundary. He was also called for pass interference against Cromartie on the play. However, Matt Ryan went back to Jones on the following play and the receiver made an awesome one-handed grab over his outside shoulder with his outside hand while Cromartie held Jones' inside arm down field. Cromartie was called for a pass interference foul, but the reception put the Falcons into Jets territory and set up a 20-yard touchdown run to bring Atlanta within 6 of the Jets. Jones isn't seeing looks in the red zone and his down field targets are more limited than they would be with Roddy White healthy, but he's generating at least one 1-2 big plays a game that are making a difference.
2012 Week 1 vs KC (9 / 6 / 108 / 2 rec)
hose wondering if Julio Jones dramatic preseason would carry over can stop wondering. It was incredible just how open Jones was able to get, no matter who was covering him or whether the Chiefs were playing man or zone. His first catch came against zone coverage, and he found a whole right in the middle but he finished the drive by outrunning his man to the corner of the end zone. The impressive part was, it was only a 10 yard route but he beat his man to the corner by 2 steps. Jones second TD came on an inside screen that was probably an illegal pick. Still once, Jones caught the ball at the line of scrimmage he ran by the four defenders in the area as if they were standing still. Jones was uncoverable on the slant, the fade, the out, the screen. In year two he's gotten much more precise in both his routerunning and body control. He truly looks elite in just about every aspect of his position.
2012 Week 2 vs DEN (7 / 4 / 14 / 0 rec, 1 / 1 / 0 rush)
Indifferent is the only way Julio Jones' outing can be described in this game. Jones' first reception came on a screen pass when the Broncos swarmed to him to prevent him from getting back to the line of scrimmage. He lost a yard but there was very little he could do about it. On his first play in single coverage with Tracy Porter, Jones swept past him down the sideline to be wide open in the endzone. Despite catching the football initially, he couldn't hold onto it as he fell to the ground. It was a catch you would expect Jones to make 99/100 times. The Falcons immediately looked to get Jones involved on the next drive with an end-around. He never had much of a chance however as he was required to beat two defenders to get past the line of scrimmage. Jones dropped another pass that he should have easily caught, while he wasn't getting many opportunities to go deep because Ryan was getting rid of the ball quickly. Jones appeared to be replaced by Harry Douglas at halftime in the team's two wide receiver sets. While the reasoning was unclear, he still played an important part as he caught what was essentially the game sealing reception. On third and 5 in their own territory with two minutes to go, Ryan threw a pass off his back foot to Jones running an underneath crossing route. Jones was wide open, but still had to use his power and length to gain forward moment and reach for the first down.
2012 Week 3 vs SD (7 / 5 / 67 / 1 rec)
On the game's very first play from scrimmage, Jones made a tough grab over the middle and held on despite taking a big shot as he caught it. Shortly thereafter, the announcers reported that Jones had left the game with a hand injury. Some sources were reporting that he was out for the game, but he in fact returned in the middle of the second quarter. He caught a deep ball down the middle and was close to breaking it, but had his foot tripped up as he turned upfield. Soon after, he caught Matt Ryan's third touchdown pass of the game. Jones did a fantastic job of twisting his body in mid-air on a high fade to the corner of the end zone. He made a nice grab and showed excellent body control as he turned towards the ground and managed to tap both feet inbounds. He was seemingly holding his arm or chest area after the score, but didn't seem to be in any pain or anything unusual. As with most of the Atlanta offensive players, Jones had a pretty quiet second half as the team kind of took the air out of the ball and focused on running out the clock.
2012 Week 4 vs CAR (8 / 1 / 30 / 0 rec)
Julio Jones was kept under wraps for the majority of this game, and much of it can be attributed to the rapport that Matt Ryan has with Roddy White. The Ryan/White combination were clicking throughout the game, converting third downs and creating splash plays. Jones was asked to run intermediate to deep patterns, and the Panthers played a lot of two-deep looks defensively, taking away the big play. Jones was targeted by Ryan early, including one end zone shot, but the passes were well broken up. Ryan put his faith in Jones on a crucial third down late in the game, and the big man delivered with a catch in traffic. Jones could have had a 40+ yard reception credited to him on a 9-route, but he was unable to tap his second foot in bounds. Jones was a feature of the offense throughout - he simply wasn't able to break out in the box score on this day.
2012 Week 5 vs WAS (15 / 10 / 94 / 1 rec, 1 / 1 / 0 rush)
The gifted second-year receiver from Alabama was a no-show in Week 4 against the division rival Panthers, and in truth, had been quiet since the first week of the season against the Chiefs. Putting what most considered a mild hand injury behind him, Jones led all Falcons receivers in targets with a whopping fifteen. He converted those targets into ten receptions for ninety-four yards and a touchdown, proving to once again be an offensive weapon that simply defies matchups. Jones dropped a deep ball early, but recovered to make a spectacular catch on the side of the end zone for his touchdown.
2012 Week 6 vs OAK (8 / 4 / 63 / 0 rec)
Julio Jones had 4 catches for 63 yards on the day. 5 of Jones's 7 targets were deeper passes, including a long of 25 yards on the first play of the game. Jones also had a nice 18 yard diving catch that was initially ruled a catch, but was called incomplete upon a smart challenge by Oakland because he didn't have full possession as he hit the ground. Jones also narrowly missed out on a touchdown, taking a 19 yard gain to the Oakland 2 yard line, which set up Roddy White's short touchdown catch. Jones also had a deep ball thrown at him in the endzone that was intercepted, but the fault was all Matt Ryan's, as the pass was underthrown and chucked into triple coverage. It's clear that White and Jones can co-exist as 1a and 1b, and if Ryan hadn't had such a bad day, it's very possible Jones could have seen 10 targets on the day.
2012 Week 8 vs PHI (5 / 5 / 123 / 1 rec, 1 / 9 / 0 rush)
Jones was the leading man in Atlanta's air attack against the Eagles. Catching all five passes for a game-best one hundred and twenty-three yards, Jones manhandled Philadelphia's elite secondary. The Alabama product caught the longest pass play of Atlanta's season, a sixty-three yard go route heave from Matt Ryan in which Jones matched up against famed corner Nnamdi Asomugha in single coverage. Jones used his size and speed to roast Asomugha and haul in Ryan's perfectly placed pass for a touchdown to put the Falcons up by fourteen. Jones was involved in two other big plays at Lincoln Financial Field - a faked screen pass in which the Eagles defense ran towards him that set up a fifteen yard Drew Davis touchdown, and another screen pass that Jones caught and outmaneuvered the Philadelphia secondary for thirty-seven yards. Jones received but five targets on the day, with the Falcons ahead for all of the game and content to run the ball in the dreary Philadelphia weather.
2012 Week 9 vs DAL (6 / 5 / 129 / 0 rec, 1 / 8 / 0 rush)
Jones had a great game against the Cowboys on Sunday night, routinely abusing rookie cornerback Morris Claiborne. Jones primarily ran go patterns and deep crosses from the left side although he was sent in motion on a number of plays. When not going deep, Jones ran quick slants across the middle as an outlet receiver and quick hitches in an effort to draw Claiborne closer to the line of scrimmage pre-snap. He finished the day with five receptions (on six targets) for 129 yards. His best catch came on a 48 yard gain down the left sideline that drew an interference penalty from Claiborne. Despite the significant contact, Jones was able to haul in the pass for the large gain. Jones speed and sure hands make him a difficult matchup regardless, but the Cowboys inexplicably left him in single-coverage much of the night allowing him to have three receptions of over 18 yards. Jones was whistled for offensive pass interference on a deep pass in the fourth quarter. Thankfully for him the Falcons were able to pick up the first down three plays later. Jones also had an 8 yard rush on third down around the left end on a reverse. The play call showed the Falcons' confidence in both the line blocking and Jones quick acceleration.
2012 Week 10 vs NO (5 / 4 / 75 / 0 rec)
Jones did most of his damage on one pass play. The Falcons attempted to get him going with a couple of short passes, but he suffered a shin injury in the first quarter and went to the locker room. Jones came up big for the Falcons on their first offensive possession in the fourth quarter. Sprinting down the sideline, Jones leaped over coverage to bring down a deep ball from Matt Ryan for a fifty-two yard gain, setting up the Falcons at first-and-goal at the New Orleans five-yard line. Though he was absent for the majority of the game, he seemed to suffer no ill effects from his injury on that incredibly display of athleticism. He finished the day with four catches for seventy-five yards receiving.
2012 Week 11 vs ARI (7 / 3 / 33 / 0 rec)
Julio Jones was making his return to the field on Sunday after an injury and still looked like he wasn't quite 100%. Jones did not quite have his elite speed as he struggled to separate a lot from corners. QB Ryan was also looking to WR White far more often to convert first downs as he probably knew Jones would have a harder time getting open. Jones got a lot of quick patterns that were designed to get the ball into his hands fast and allow for yards after the catch. Jones also got open on a deep curl route and hauled in a great high pass from Ryan for the first down. Jones' final catch was a simple screen pass that did not develop right and he was taken down quickly. Jones got fewer targets and shots deep down the field than we are used to as he returns to regain his form after injury. The Falcons also struggled big time with turnovers/interceptions which greatly limited the stats for every player as their drives were cut short often. QB Ryan will sometimes lean heavily on WR White and somewhat ignore Jones, who is more of a big play boom/bust WR. Often times if Jones fails to haul in a big pass play, his numbers will not look very impressive. His injury will clearly hamper for now this but look for him to improve every week and hopefully regain his explosiveness down the field.
2012 Week 12 vs TB (9 / 6 / 147 / 1 rec)
Jones' first reception came wide open down the left sideline for 10 yards on third and four. Jones ran a skinny post route with a defender on his back for his next reception. Ryan hit him in stride for a first down. Jones was penalized for pass interference in the endzone when he pushed off against a defender by the pylon after running a post route. Jones redeemed himself two plays later when he converted third and 11 with a nice move to beat two defenders near the goalline. Ryan looked to Jones on the very next play in the same corner of the endzone as before, but he was squeezed out of bounds by two defenders. After twice failing to get into the endzone from the redzone, Ryan went straight to Jones at the beginning of the next drive for an 80 yard touchdown. Jones beat the defender trying to cover him deep down the field, before shrugging off his tackle attempt and sprinting down the sideline for a touchdown. Jones caught a nine yard curl pass later in the fourth quarter as he found a soft spot between two defenders. Jones caught a deeper curl on the next drive in between two defenders.
2012 Week 13 vs NO (8 / 5 / 48 / 0 rec)
After dropping a slant on a previous drive, Jones caught his first reception for a first down on a slant against Patrick Robinson in tight coverage. Ryan went straight back to Jones over the middle when he caught the ball between the linebackers and safeties for a first down. He bobbled the football when he was hit by the safety, but was quick to react and catch it before it hit the ground. Jones caught a screen pass on second and 15 for eight yards on his team's first drive of the third quarter. On a relatively quiet night, when Jones and Ryan weren't consistently on the same page by any means, Jones added a four yard reception underneath against single coverage. A few plays later, Jones caught a pivotal pass on third down and eight when he ran away from a defender to convert.
2012 Week 14 vs CAR (11 / 5 / 66 / 1 rec)
Julio Jones, like most of Atlanta's offense, was kept quiet until the second half. Jones made his presence known in the contest with a beautiful diving grab on a 15-yard dig pattern, laying out for the ball and trapping it in his strong hands. Jones had a couple of drops to his name as well, including a deep out pattern. The pass was contested, but he would have been favourite to secure it. Jones got into the end zone on a well-designed backside screen pass as Atlanta was set up deep in the red zone. Jones suffered due to Atlanta's inability to generate any consistent offense in the first half.
2012 Week 15 vs NYG (6 / 6 / 74 / 2 rec, 1 / 18 / 0 rush)
With WR White slightly hobbled from injury, Julio Jones stepped up in a big way to help secure a relatively easy win over the Giants on Sunday. Jones was on fire from the start of the game and made plays throughout the game. Jones got several screen pass plays on the outside that allowed the WR to use his speed to pick up first downs in open space. Jones' biggest play came on a simple streak pattern as he was able to blow past the rookie CB easily down the sideline and haul in a perfect pass from QB Ryan in the endzone. Jones also showed terrific patience and speed again on a simple end around rush attempt, getting to the corner and making NYG pay. Jones' second touchdown came on a fade route to the endzone. Jones was covered well by a NYG DB but the pass was perfectly located and Jones used his size to box out the defender for the score. Jones dominated the field at times, looked explosive everytime he got the football and the Giants did not have a good answer for stopping the young speedy WR.
2012 Week 16 vs DET (11 / 7 / 71 / 1 rec, 1 / -7 / 0 rush)
Julio Jones continues to prove why he's one of the game's best wide receivers. Jones displayed both his soft hands and precise route running by catching intermediate and deep passes. During the first half, Atlanta set-up two short wide receiver screens for Jones. Jones was able to secure minimal five yard gains, but these plays set-up his touchdown grab. Right before halftime, Jones ran to the back pylon and Ryan delivered a perfect throw. Jones plucked the ball out of the air and gingerly drug both toes to secure the 16-yard touchdown. After halftime, Ryan misfired on three deep passes, but found Jones working the middle of the field. During the fourth quarter, Jones picked up a key third down to extend the eventual touchdown drive. Jones was working against Chris Houston and fought back across the field to secure the catch. Jones' sole rushing attempt was stifled as he failed to get out of the backfield.
2012 Week 17 vs TB (6 / 3 / 56 / 0 rec)
After four touchdowns in the previous three games, Jones was held out of the end zone by one of the worst pass defenses, statistically-speaking, in the NFL. Tampa Bay pressured Matt Ryan all day, which limited Jones' time to get down the field. If fact, 28 yards of Jones' total came on a receiver screen where he had a head of steam to get down the field. On Jones' two deep targets of the game, Ryan underthrew passes. Jones did not have much of a chance to play the ball in the air, or run up the ball with his excellent speed, two of his biggest strengths as a receiver. Jones' six targets match his lowest in a game since Week 10 and a quiet end to his very successful sophomore season. Despite being fifth on the team in targets against Tampa Bay, Jones led all Atlanta receivers in yards.
2012 Week 19 vs SEA (10 / 6 / 59 / 0 rec, 1 / -1 / 0 rush)
Jones intercepted Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson's Hail Mary pass as time expired to give Atlanta its first playoff win in the Mike Smith era. When he was not moonlighting as a defensive back, Jones caught six passes for fifty-nine yards on ten targets from Matt Ryan. Not a particularly stellar day from the second-year receiver from Alabama, who saw coverage from both towering Seattle cornerbacks Brandon Browner and Richard Sherman. Sherman batted away two would-be huge plays out of Jones's reach, one pass on the Falcons' first play of the game, the other a go route pass in the end zone. Tight coverage from the Seattle secondary forced the Falcons to attempt shorter pass plays with Jones to get him in space, and those came with mixed results. The sophomore wide receiver did catch a pass on a short inside slant from quarterback Matt Ryan and took it downfield for a twenty-one yard gain, a completion that set up a five-yard touchdown pass to running back Jason Snelling. If the Falcons are to have any success against San Francisco's powerhouse of a defensive unit in the NFC Championship Game, the team will need to lean on Jones's size against the 49ers smaller secondary.
2012 Week 20 vs SF (0 / 11 / 182 / 2 rec)
The second-year receiver looked more focused than ever in the biggest game of his NFL career to-date. He put on a show with 100 yards and a long touchdown in the first quarter alone and added another beautiful touchdown catch to open the second quarter. Jones showed a full arsenal of skills in the early going by boxing out a defender on a short contested catch, blowing past a confused safety on a deep route, and showing good hands with defenders on his hip. Jones continued his impressive performance in the second half with two clutch receptions. One came after a big hit on a deep in-cut route and another on a key third down comeback route. While finishing with over 180 yards and two touchdowns on the day, Jones had a deep target broken up by a defensive back in the fourth quarter, potentially adding 40 or more yards to his total. After a huge second season, the sky is the limit for Julio Jones as a top-5 receiver in 2013.
2011 Week 1 vs CHI (6 / 5 / 71 / 0 rec)
Julio Jones had a great performance as a rookie but you would be forgiven to think it was a dissapointing performance after all the hype during the pre season. Jones was not the explosive, bomb threat we expected him to be in this game but did show some very nice things to his game. Jones has great concentration and hands for the ball which led to many catches that were highly contested with a close defender or in traffic. Ryan was unable to go deep in this game due to a stifling Bears defense but against another team on another day, he could prove much more dangerous. Jones has the speed to get behind defenders when left with 1 on 1 match ups and the physicality to play up close on short routes.
2011 Week 2 vs PHI (7 / 2 / 29 / 0 rec)
Despite his QB looking his way early and often on Sunday night Jones managed a measly 2 catches for 29 yards on the night. One of his receptions was a beauty as he skied over two defenders down the middle of the field for a 15 yard gain. Like White, Jones was contained by the Eagles top notch corners in week 2.
2011 Week 3 vs TB (7 / 6 / 115 / 0 rec, 1 / -9 / 0 rush)
His 1st touch of the game was an end around and 36 year old Ronde Barber who had an amazing game for the Bucs including a couple of turnovers tracked down Jones on the play for a 9 yard loss. This really set the tone for the Bucs defense throughout the day. His big play of the day was probably the long ball he adjusted to. Jones ran past the Bucs defenders down the middle of the field and then had to make an adjustment to an under thrown ball form Matt Ryan who had the Bucs bearing down on him. Had he caught it in stride it would have been an easy TD for Jones. Julio is still learning the game but he managed to get separation at times on a pretty good Bucs defense. Jones has a lot of speed and even with all the terrible pass protection throughout the game he still managed to make a big impact and likely a good showing for most fantasy owners.
2011 Week 4 vs SEA (17 / 11 / 127 / 0 rec)
Jones has obviously earned the confidence of Matt Ryan, earning a whopping 17 targets in this game, in which he outshined teammate Roddy White. Jones made the most out of his short receptions in the early going, turning a routine short crossing route into a 30 yard gain. Ryan continued to use him in this way, and we saw that Jones has good, sure hands -- and he's FAST, often able to break away from coverage after the catch. To start the second half, the Falcons changed things up and threw long to Jones down the sideline. It was a good throw but he wasn't able to catch it in tight coverage. Jones would continue to be used as a deep target as he had a sneaky habit of getting behind the defense. Ryan actually seemed to underthrow him a bit, so that part of their game continues to be a work in progress.
2011 Week 5 vs GB (4 / 1 / 16 / 0 rec, 1 / 17 / 0 rush)
Julio showed off his speed on an end-around that he took from Ryan, in which Jones turned on the after burners and streaked up the left side for 17 yards. But other than that, Jones didn't get many opportunities. Ryan threw one jump ball to him deep, but he left it kind of short and Julio was unable to grab it over the defender. Ryan needs to put more air in those jump balls. Then Ryan missed Julio on a deep ball, though Julio came up grabbing his hamstring. Julio never returned to the game and only finished with one catch.
2011 Week 9 vs IND (4 / 3 / 131 / 2 rec, 2 / 33 / 0 rush)
Julio Jones had an incredible game that any rookie would be envious of and really demonstrated his talent on so many levels. Jones only caught three passes but everyone saw his explosiveness to turn any pass into a touchdown. Jones somehow hauled in a Hail Mary type pass from Ryan for his first touchdown. The pass was hung in the air for a long time and the defenders simply watched as Jones got very low and secured the catch. A few plays later, Jones caught a routine slant and then used his elite speed to run away from any potential tackler. Jones immense talent and skill set was on full display on Sunday for everyone to see and he could not have looked more impressive. He has the size, speed and hands to be a dominant WR. He also has the QB that can get him the ball frequently and he looks to be worth every draft pick the Falcons paid to get him.
2011 Week 10 vs NO (5 / 2 / 9 / 0 rec)
Julio Jones left this game early and perhaps should have never even attempted to play the game as he must have tweaked his hamstring injury. Jones managed to draw a PI early on and catch a short pass as he looked unaffected by his injury at the start of the game. He was targeted in the redzone as well but was unable to make the catch. He was promptly taken out of the game as his team probably did not want to cause further injury to his hamstring.
2011 Week 12 vs MIN (0 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)
Julio Jones looked invisible and perhaps he was not 100% healthy in this game. It looked like Jones was going to haul in a bomb pass from Ryan but the ball bounced off his hands and he was flagged for pass interference aswell. Jones could only watch as WR White dominated this game. The rookie should look up to WR White and everyone should remember who the tested and trusted veteran is before expecting too much from a talented but somewhat raw rookie WR. A lot of Jones' production this year has come from big plays but Ryan was happy to settle for a methodical approach in this game and the game plan was more suited to a big day from WR White and TE Gonzalez. Jones will continue to have big play opportunities down the stretch however.
2011 Week 13 vs HOU (11 / 4 / 68 / 0 rec)
Jones day was a bit of a mixed bag. On the one hand, he had a number of excellent catches. On the other, he dropped a very catchable ball in the end zone that would have forced overtime. Jones continues to evolve as a matchup problem for other teams. He is quick and fast in the open field, but his ability to get free at the line of scrimmage has improved each week of the season. He now requires having a safety rolled to his side as defenses try to avoid him breaking a long gain. His best catch of the day came on a pass down the right sideline that went for a 26 yard gain. Jones showed a veteran's savvy in timing his run just right to catch the ball at full speed and gain a few extra yards before being pushed out of bounds. On the game's final play, however, he ran an excellent route to the left side of the end zone and out-jumped the Houston defense with ease. Unfortunately, the ball hit him in the hands and dropped harmlessly to the turf.
2011 Week 14 vs CAR (8 / 3 / 104 / 2 rec)
Julio Jones, after a rather slow start to this game, came to life in the second half. Jones was targeted three times in the red zone, often with the football hitting him in the hands, but he could not convert. In the second half, Jones caught a pass from Ryan just short of the end zone and reached his long frame over the plane for a 17-yard score. Then, with less than five minutes remaining in the fourth, Jones broke free for a 75-yard touchdown. He ran a quick hitch route, caught the pass and made a man miss, then turned it up the field. His downfield speed was too much for the Panthers to chase down. The inconsistent elements of Jones' game will have to improve in the offseason but when he produces plays like his two touchdowns, it will be hard to ignore his talent.
2011 Week 15 vs JAX (6 / 5 / 85 / 1 rec, 1 / 6 / 0 rush)
Any owner wondering to start Jones tonight didn't have to wait long to be rewarded, on the opening drive Jones caught the ball in stride for a 5 yard completion then exploded up field to turn the reception into a 29 yard touchdown. Jones has such freakish physical abilities he makes defenders look completely silly, from running after the catch to out leaping corners in triple coverage for receptions. If Jones allows himself to be mentored by his great teammate Roddy White the sky is the limit for the rookie wide receiver, at times Jones needs to continue to focus on catching the ball cleanly, affecting his downfield receptions.
2011 Week 16 vs NO (14 / 8 / 128 / 1 rec)
Jones had another great night statistically, but it could've been even better based on how the game unfolded allowing for a gaudy 52 total passing attempts. The physically gifted athlete does such a great job at getting off the line of scrimmage forcing the defense to bracket cover him early on which was evident on his 21 yard touchdown forcing Ryan to place the ball in a tight window. Jones was able to get open deep but the thrown balls weren't placed in the right spot or on time. Jones does such a great job at gaining yardage after contact usually running routes underneath and routinely able to run through the first tackle attempt and gain positive yardage but his strength also hurt his team; causing him to fumble which ended the drive and his teams chances of getting back into the game. Julio also could've gotten another touchdown inside the 10-yard line but was not able to come down with both feet in bounds in the end zone. Another factor taking away from his production is his inability to consistently catch the football with his hands usually allowing the ball to hit his body or tends to bobble the ball before securing it.
2011 Week 17 vs TB (5 / 4 / 76 / 2 rec, 1 / 9 / 0 rush)
Incredible touchdown on his 1st trip into the end zone. Jones managed to run thru 3 DBs on his way to the end zone. In fact he left 3 guys in a pile while he stepped his way into the end zone. He ran a crossing pattern across the middle of the field and caught the ball in stride which makes him even more dangerous. Only thing better than the 1st touchdown was the 2nd touchdown which was thrown into double coverage and he still managed to come down with the football, he bobbled it only slightly and secured it while he was on the ground and then gets up and finished the final 10-15 yards dragging Bucs DBs with him into the end zone. Jones is a stud right now. This guy has been a difference maker all season and he has a chance to cause some serious damage in new York next week to open the playoffs. He makes circus like catches look routine.
2011 Week 18 vs NYG (8 / 7 / 64 / 0 rec, 1 / 13 / 0 rush)
Rookie sensation Julio Jones was kept quiet by the Giants secondary in this game, although he did make a couple of catches that could be considered "explosive" plays in this game, including a 20-yard catch on a deep dig route out of a stacked receiver alignment. This allowed Jones a free release, which he took advantage of. Jones was also used in the backfield, taking a toss for 10 yards and fooling the Giants. Overall, like White, Jones' impact was minimal.