Source: The Atlanta Falcons have acquired TE Jonnu Smith from the Patriots in exchange for a pick. The Falcons have exchanged their No. 245) to the New England Patriots in exchange for tight end Jonnu Smith, according to ESPN sources who confirmed previous reports.
After spending the first four years of his career with the Tennessee Titans, Smith signed with New England in 2021. During Jonnu Smith’s time in Tennessee, Falcons head coach Arthur Smith was the Titans’ tight ends coach and then offensive coordinator.
In March 2021, the Patriots offered Jonnu Smith a four-year, $50 million contract that included a guarantee of $31.25 million. As per ESPN’s List The executives Framework, Smith had cap hits of $17,228,529 in 2023 and $18,405,000 in 2024 with New Britain.
According to sources, the deal will include a revision to Smith’s contract.
However, in New England, he never found his groove. He started 11 games in his first season with the team, and he caught 28 passes for 294 yards and one touchdown. He started eight of the team’s 14 games last season and caught 27 passes for 245 yards and no touchdowns.
At tight end, the Patriots have veteran Hunter Henry, as well as developing prospects Matt Sokol and Scotty Washington, a position where New England will have a greater need in the draft or free agency. In 2023, Henry enters his contract’s final year. The Patriots gain approximately $4.4 million in salary cap space as a result of the move.
Smith has started 72 of 90 games in his career and has caught 169 passes for 1,841 yards and 17 touchdowns. He was particularly productive with the Titans, with whom he had the best two seasons of his career, including a 2020 campaign in which he caught 41 passes for 448 yards and eight touchdowns. He may be eligible for a position in Atlanta that is comparable to the one he held in Tennessee.
Smith joins Kyle Pitts, a tight end who was selected in the first round of the draft in 2021 and is currently recovering from knee surgery that ended the season in 2022.
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