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Falcons, LT Jake Matthews agree to three-year, big-money extension

The Falcons have some work to do up front. They've started by locking up their most important protector.

Atlanta and left tackle Jake Matthews have agreed to terms on a three-year extension, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported. The extension includes $52.5 million in Matthews' first three years and carries an average annual value of $18.5 million while also clearing some immediate cap space for the Falcons, per Rapoport.

Falcons general manager Terry Fontenot was not bashful when speaking with reporters during the NFL Scouting Combine about Atlanta's need to create some cap space to be able to improve its roster in 2022. He accomplished a bit of both with this extension, securing the important services of Matthews while also giving Atlanta some immediate financial flexibility.

How the Falcons spend it remains to be seen. The Falcons still need to improve their offensive line at a couple of other starting spots and are also looking for playmakers on the offensive side of the ball. And they still have to figure out how to plan for a life without Matt Ryan, whenever that comes.

The frenzy is just getting started. Atlanta, which previously restructured Ryan's contract, has at least given itself a better chance to make a little noise in the open market.

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