Jones was due to make $8.2 million in base salary this year, but agreed to defer $4 million of that salary to the 2022 regular season in exchange for having his 2022 base salary fully guaranteed, giving him certainty about his future for two more seasons.
Jones now has a $4 million fully guaranteed roster bonus in March 2022 -- paid out over the course of the 2022 regular season -- on top of his fully guaranteed $9.64 million base salary for 2022. The deal also includes the equivalent to one extra week's worth of salary as the NFL is on the precipice of announcing the expansion of its regular season to 17 games.
For the Falcons, the $4 million in cap savings for this year is pivotal during a year in which teams around the NFL have had to make difficult roster decisions with the salary cap dropping to $182.5 million from the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Atlanta has been relatively quiet in free agency, but recently signed running back Mike Davis to a two-year deal and currently owns the fourth pick in the NFL draft, which could carry a cap charge around $6 million for 2021.