Julio Jones: ‘It Wasn’t Really About Coming to Tampa’

Julio Jones

Getty Julio Jones catches a pass at Buccaneers training camp.

Julio Jones recently became the newest recruit of Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady, but the new Bucs receiver didn’t want to give any inside details.

After new Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Julio Jones flew in last minute before training camp, the media prodded him on how really joined the team.

Bucs quarterback Tom Brady has been known to recruit players to Tampa before.

“That’s confidential,” Jones joked with the media about conversations with Brady.  “Tom’s a great guy, man — who you want to be leading your ball club, who you want to play for.”

“I talked to him, I talked to Tom several times. It wasn’t really about coming to Tampa. We were just communicating, feeling each other out, I guess. It was probably a tactic,” Jones added humorously. “But I’m here now.”

Jones added that the Bucs had been on his radar since the Tennessee Titans released him in March after missing seven games due to injury last season. The Bucs signed Jones on Tuesday for a one-year contract for $6 million according to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero.

“It’s just for me to come out here, knowing my value and what I have to offer,” Jones said. “The Buccaneers organization has just given me the opportunity to come here and showcase my skills. And just to be a part of something new, be a part of this team. Like I said, they have everything that they need already. But you’ve got to put the work in each and every day.”

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Jones: ‘Why Gotta Bring Up Old Stuff’

Jones will join forces with the quarterback who denied him his previous best shot at a Super Bowl ring. Brady brought the New England Patriots back from 28-3 down to beat Jones’ Atlanta Falcons in 2017 with a 34-28 overtime victory.

“Why we gotta bring up old stuff? He did it. He did it. He did it,” Jones said humorously. “It’s just a surreal moment. It’s amazing. I’m ready to go though. At the end of the day, it’s all about accountability. I have to be accountable for him, the team, everybody, right? With all that said and done, I’ve still gotta come to work. I still have to put the work in.”

“But that’s the past,” Jones said. “I’m here now. I’m looking forward. I’m not looking backwards. It’s a great opportunity for me to be a part of something special in the Buccaneer family. Just looking forward to getting to work.”

Jones, who once gave the Bucs trouble during his 10-year career in Atlanta, downplayed seeing his old team twice this season.

 “I come in the same way every game,” Jones said.

He will cross paths with his other old team in Nashville during joint practices and a preseason game in August.

Jones Says He ‘Feels Amazing’

Injuries hobbled Jones at the end of his time in Atlanta with seven games missed in 2020 followed by an injury-riddled stint in Tennessee.

Jones told the media that it’s in the past, too. He said he “feels amazing” and is healthy coming into the Bucs’ training camp.

“I don’t have any issues, nothing lingering, holding me back, anything like that,” Jones said about his health. “But it’s just the beginning. So I just have to check all those boxes first and then come out here and play.”


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