Julio Jones is a wide receiver who continues to push the boundaries on what we believe humans to be capable of. It’s why he’s become the most beloved athlete in Atlanta since Chipper Jones decided to hang up the bat and glove.
He was destined for greatness in Atlanta early on. In high school, he earned the nickname “Waffle House” because he was always open. A Falcons receiver with that nickname — a beloved Atlanta-based chain — is almost too good to be true.
Julio Jones makes plays that send a jolt of energy through your body. His 2016 season was a complete display of this, making plays through the end of the Super Bowl. The starting point to enjoying any player in any sport, is resonating with their style of play. Jones offers that.
But everything else about Jones is subtle, yet great. He’s still able to come off as relatable, even as one of the best pro athletes in the world. You’ve just never noticed it.
He still appreciates the value of a fresh haircut
He’s earned nearly $52 million over the course of his NFL career. Making that type of bread will change a person. Yet Jones still enjoys the things in life that really matter — like a fresh cut.
An urban legend (it’s totally true) says that after a fresh cut, the recipient of said cut is invincible for 24 hours. There’s nothing like a brand new line-up (and a fade, for some of us). It’s the self-appearance version of a direct deposit hitting your bank account — it’s pretty, and the only way from there is down.
The proof is in the caption.
Aside from a clean cut, there’s other ways that indicate Jones doesn’t need much to be happy.
He finds joy in the most simple things
After the Super Bowl, Jones appears to be at a fun outdoor gathering. There’s a server walking around with drinks, and based on the clothing Jones and the man to his right are wearing, they must be in a preferred location weather-wise for it to be late-February.
However, he can’t be concerned with the main attractions. This picture with a squirrel was much more important.
Out of everything and everybody that was likely at that event, this was the one thing that stuck out to him to post on his Instagram. With how concerned people can get with their social media habits and image, it’s dope to see Jones just decide he’s going to get one for the ‘gram with a person in a squirrel costume.
He enjoys real animals, too. He spent some time this summer at a beach feeding a pig some carrots.
That’s how you do a vacation, y’all.
All of the previously mentioned items are good and cool. But there’s still a part of Jones that does things a superstar wide receiver would do.
Jones still does superstar receiver things on his own terms
Everybody has an idea of what they would do if they had access to the money, places, and people that athletes, entertainers, and other rich and famous people do. Jones doesn’t show off a whole lot when it comes to that, though he has put himself first in line to be the fourth member of Migos if there were ever an opportunity.
First, there were these bad-ass customs by Under Armour that were based off the Culture album cover:
Jones also made an entire music video with Migos for their song “11 Birds” which is about the Atlanta Falcons and Jones. They’re tossing the football around in the street with random break-ins of them eating at the Busy Bee Cafe in Atlanta — because we all need good soul food in our lives.
During the summer, Jones showed up at the BET Awards in support of Migos. If you haven’t realized it by this point, Jones takes his Instagram game seriously with all of these spicy captions.
This one read “C A S K E T” because he was killing it with his suit. Migos originated the A L L C A P S W I T H S P A C E S Instagram caption style, and Jones stayed true to form.
Yet only the greats become memes
Things got more interesting than him just showing up at the BET Awards. Migos and Joe Budden got into what can barely be called a scuffle. One of the hosts, DJ Akademiks, had the audacity to ask Takeoff (Migos rapper for the uninitiated) why he was left off of “Bad and Boujee,” and then make him repeat his answer. Though to be fair, it did seem loud in there.
Budden then got up and dropped his microphone in frustration, as Akademiks called Migos one of his favorite groups. It sparked Quavo, Takeoff and Offset to get up, ready to square up.
Jones was there and concerned, turning into an amazing meme that no one could have ever imagined — look at the concern in his face:
Jones hasn’t made himself this megastar off the field, but it’s neat to see him still become cool with Migos. They’ve become the biggest music sensation in Atlanta, and one of the biggest in America since dropping Culture.
Atlantans hold the Falcons and their music icons near and dear to their hearts. To see the two most popular in each setting come together so casually warms the soul.
There are endless reasons why Jones could be a bigger star than what he is now — but he’s not concerned with that. He is himself, doesn’t aspire to be anybody but himself, and has made it impossible for anybody to dislike him.
He’s going to play football at a high level, and have some fun with where the pigskin takes him. We should be enjoying every minute while he’s around because in Atlanta, things can end in an instant, as we’ve seen in the past.