Apr. 12, 2019
Falcons Updated Draft Outlook
With the draft less than two weeks away, some draft strategies and potential picks are beginning to look like sure locks. One camp that could potentially go any way with their first round pick is the Atlanta Falcons. The Falcons have a desperate need on their defensive front, as they are unable to get a consistent play out of many of their young talent. Guys like Vic Beasley and Takk McKinley have flashes of excellence but can often get taken out of the game with offensive game planning and offensive line play. Grady Jarrett has proven himself as a consistent talent up the middle but lacking another strong interior guy with inconsistent rush on the outside causes many team to key in on Jarrett and take him out of a game. Although I see Deandre Baker as a solid pick and fitment with the Atlanta Falcons defense, all of Atlanta's roster moves point toward them finding their pass-rush help through the draft ideally in the first round. The Atlanta Falcons did not pursue an exterior guy like Justin Houston in free agency once he became available and instead brought back in Adrian Clayborn. The signing of Clayborn does provide flexibility with their first pick as they can look at an interior guy as well such as Ed Oliver. I see the Falcons taking a "best player available" approach when the clock hits them on draft day and will likely result in them taking a talented defensive lineman that somehow feel to them with the 14th pick. I can foresee a name such as Ed Oliver, Montez Sweat, or even Brian Burns coming off the board following the 14th pick in the draft and going to the Falcons. After securing their defensive lineman, the Falcons must look to the offensive linemen on the second day of the draft in order to add young talent to the interior and receive consistent play. Following their top 2 picks the Falcons will then look to fill depth and a few holes in the secondary and linebacker group. With Duke Riley not looking like the answer to complete the Falcons linebacker core I suspect they will spend a pick or two later in the draft to potentially secure a developmental guy, much like they did with the De'vondre Campbell selection a few years back. A great fit would be Devin Bush of Michigan would be a great fit for the defense to develop in to a linebacker to pair with Deion Jones and Campbell.