Matt Ryan Targeted Julio Jones 19 Times vs Eagles, But Still a Mess in Red Zone

Julio Jones dominated the opener, but can't get on the same page with Matt Ryan in the red zone.

It was clear against the Eagles that Matt Ryan will be targeting stud WR Julio Jones heavily throughout the 2018 season. Although he didn’t find the end zone (surprise, surprise), Jones corralled 10 of 19 targets for 169 yards — which totaled a game-high 23 fantasy points (.5 PPR) on the night. If Thursday night’s opener was any indication of what the Falcons’ offense will look like this year, Julio Jones’ owners will be very happy.

Although Julio dominated between the 20s, Ryan and Jones could once again not get on the same page in the red zone. Ryan was abysmal in that area, going 1-9 with an interception and 0-3 (INT) when targeting Jones in the red zone. Dating back the last two seasons, Ryan is 1-20 when targeting his Alpha Target Hog in the red area. How does that even happen?

Being optimistic, Jones had a great night and his stock should be on the rise as he gets a few extra days of rest before they get the Panthers at home next weekend. Jones’ night would have been even better if the NFL could figure out their own catch rule, as the refs overturned a clear 51-yard reception. He could have had a vintage Julio 200-yard game in Week 1 against one of the league’s best defenses! It’s clear offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian and Matt Ryan are going to try to get the ball into their playmaker’s hands (on pace for an absurd 304 targets) — now let’s get him in the end zone.


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