Alabama in the Pros

WR Julio Jones makes fifth appearance on NFL’s Top 100 Players list

Troy Taormina - USA TODAY Sports

Fans of the Pittsburgh Steelers and analysts around the National Football League admire Antonio Brown, however, in the southeast region it’s Julio Jones that reigns supreme among the professional ranks. 

Before he enters his eighth year in the NFL, the former University of Alabama star was voted one of the league’s Top 100 Players for a fifth time. Jones was ranked at No. 4, just one spot down from where he was in 2017. He amassed a strong year in receiving, totaling 88 catches for 1,444 yards with three touchdowns through 16 games.

Jones averaged 16.4 yards per reception, earning him a fifth trip to the Pro Bowl – dating back to his first invitation after the 2012 season. 

The 6-foot-3, 220-pound specimen has accounted for five 1,000-yard seasons since being selected in the first round (6th overall pick) of the 2011 draft to the Atlanta Falcons. 

After trading up to get him, Jones has been the face of the franchise.  

He led the league in receiving yards (1,871) and was co-leader in receptions (136) in 2015, while assisting the Falcons to a Super Bowl appearance in 2016. Despite grabbing four passes for 87 yards, quarterback Tom Brady and the New England Patriots snatched a 34-28 win in Super Bowl 51.

Jones is awaiting an update to his contract, as he’ll make $10.5 million in 2018 – seventh-most behind T.Y. Hilton (Colts), A.J. Green (Bengals), DeAndre Hopkins (Texans), Jarvis Landry (Dolphins), Larry Fitzgerald (Cardinals) and Mike Evans (Buccaneers). 

Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

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