The 2013 season was a disaster for the Atlanta Falcons. After having made the playoffs in four of the previous five years, they suffered a string of injuries en route to a 4-12 record. They have some impressive talent in place, and a good draft could propel them back into the thick of the playoff race. Here’s a look at them in part six of our 32-part quick peeks series.
Who Should They Pick?: The Falcons could go a couple of ways here, but pass rush might be their biggest issue. Khalil Mack gives them a guy who boosts that area immediately. He can rush from the linebacker spot or put his hand on the ground.
Who Will They Pick?: This is one team where who they should pick and who they will pick line up. The Falcons need help on defense, and Mack is a legitimate top five prospect. They will realize this and make Mack a Falcon.
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Backup Plan: The Falcons offensive line failed to protect Matt Ryan, and didn’t open many holes in the run game either. They must play better. They could opt to solidify the line and select Jake Matthews. Matthews is an NFL ready lineman who could start right away.
Darkhorse: Another pass rusher available, depending on how they value him, is Anthony Barr. He’s a little more raw than Mack, and there are concerns about his ability to translate to the NFL, but his talent is obvious, and the Falcons could fall in love with his athleticism.
Trade?: Jadeveon Clowney would be the perfect player for Atlanta to get. They’ve shown in the past that they are willing to make a big move in the draft for a player they covet. If they are set on adding him, look for him to move up.