While the rest of the NFL is busy trying to get the best available free agents on their roster, the New England Patriots and the Atlanta Falcons turned to trade dealings. According to multiple reports, the Pats are sending tight end Jonnu Smith to the Falcons in exchange for a seventh-round selection in the 2023 NFL Draft.
The move will help the Patriots get some salary cap relief while Smith provides cover for the Falcons on the tight end position. It will allow Atlanta to be more cautious with their star TE Kyle Pitts, who is returning from knee surgery.
In Atlanta, Smith will be reunited with head coach Arthur Smith. The two previously worked together with the Tennessee Titans, where Jonnu Smith started his career, and Arthur Smith served first as a tight ends coach and later as an offensive coordinator.
The New England Patriots signed Jonnu Smith as part of their big free-agent spending spree ahead of the 2021 season. Smith was coming off a career year with the Titans, which saw him get 41 receptions for 448 yards and eight touchdowns, and he ended up getting a four-year, $50 million deal from the Pats.
However, Smith never settled in New England and delivered two underwhelming seasons. He played 30 games in which he had 55 catches for 539 yards and only one TD.