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Julio Jones plans to play Sunday as talks continue

Julio Jones still doesn't have a contract extension with just days before the Atlanta Falcons kick off the 2019 campaign Sunday against the Minnesota Vikings.

With questions swirling about whether the star receiver would sit out if a deal isn't finalized, Jones clarified that he plans to play Sunday, with or without a new deal, per the team's official website.

Jones was limited in practice Thursday. On the official injury report, the team called it "not injury related" as a rest day. The 30-year-old receiver has been recovering from a foot injury, sitting out most practices and the entire preseason.

The Falcons are very close to hammering out a new deal with Jones that could reset the receiver market. On Wednesday, NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reported that the Falcons freed up $5 million in cap space by restructuring the contracts of Jake Matthews and Ricardo Allen.

Jones said whether or not he gets a new contract, his focus is on being healthy and ready for the season.

"Like what I'm trying to do right now is be ready," Jones said Thursday. "It's not like if I'm going to play or if I'm not going to play. I'm trying to be out there regardless, coming back from injury, things like that. But the ultimate thing is just being ready when my number is called. Simple."

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