Shopping for a Championship

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by John Waynesworld

It’s time to pick the groceries again for our Falcons. Coach Quinn gets another chance to fill those Flowery Branch shelves full of fresh, hand-picked college talent. This year we pretty much need everything so Quinn and his 5-headed GM circus better get their picks right or Arthur’s 2017 Mercedes Benz party will be an PR (and PSL) car wreck.

As usual, I watched this year’s three collegiate invitational bowls, the NFLPA Collegiate All-Star Bowl, the East-West Shrine Game, the Senior Bowl, as well as their practices, if aired. They provided a wide variety of skilled college prospects to peruse, the Senior Bowl obviously having the most draftable players. That said, there are dozens of draftable NFL prospects that participated in the NFLPA & Shrine games. In fact all 3 bowl organizers stated separately that this was the best bunch of players they have seen in years. That would make sense, as the Senior Bowl had so much talent that some really good players would be bumped down to the Shrine game, which in turn filtered down to the NFLPA game. Overall, a nice 2016 class and more choices for our GM&Ms.

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The GM cluster only has 5 draft picks to work their magic. The problem is what the sub-GMs decide still has to pass the uber-GM’s smell test.There’s the rub. As usual we have to lend some assistance to our fine, feathered GM. Luckily for him, we know what traits to look for in prospects other than their aroma.

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Besides, when it comes to mocking the NFL draft, we love this kind of stuff!

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Let’s go!

ROUND ONE (#17)

We’ve got a middle of the pack pick, which is such a long wait. So, what to do at #17? On a yearly basis the Falcons’ decision-makers ask that age-old question…take the best player available or take the BPA at a position of need? Thankfully for this GM montage we have so many positions of need, the best player available will likely play one of those positions of need. 6 chefs can’t possibly screw up this house salad, right?

Because we only have 5 draft picks this go-around, there has to be some guess work on priority, like which positions the Falcons may address in the draft and free agency and which positions they will not, in favor of others. Our Head Coach and lead GM have recently mentioned a desire for solid veteran interior O-Linemen so it is almost assured that a top free agent Guard and/or Center will be signed. Conversely, Quinn has heaped offseason praise on Jacob Tamme, so they may now consider him more than just a stopgap at Tight End. In essence, the good play of Tamme could save us a draft pick and/or preserve free agent cap dollars for another position, like Safety or Wide Receiver.

At #17 it seems the only offensive position of need rated high enough that the Falcons could consider would be WR, but the odds are heavily stacked that the Falcons will draft a defensive player, especially with the recent departure of SS William Moore and OLB Justin Durant.

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Positions of need? Hmmm… I’ll take the platter.

Defense seems logical in the 1st round, anywhere except Cornerback and probably Safety. I don’t see any Safeties in the Draft worth the 17th pick after Florida State’s Jalen Ramsey, and he will be long gone. So let’s stick with DEs, DTs and LBs that could possibly be available at #17. Our Head Coach’s game plan is all about QB pressure so I don’t think Quinn and the hydra GMs will draft someone with our #1 pick if they don’t rush the passer exceedingly well. All 3 positions have prospects that can do just that.

The positions…

Untitled-6Defensive Ends: The DE class is decently stocked with a mixture of multi-year producers and one-year wonders. Clemson star DEs Shaq Lawson and Kevin Dodd are perfect examples of that and both would be solid picks at #17. Other notable DEs projected in the mid-1st to late-1st round include Florida’s Jonathan Bullard and possibly Eastern Washington’s Noah Spence. Spence, the talented yet controversial pass rusher has been projected to be drafted anywhere from the second round all the way up to a top 10 overall selection.

Linebackers: Linebackers with speed are sorely needed by the Falcons, both inside and outside. There are a very few Linebackers in this draft that rate a mid-to-late 1st round grade. Presently the highest rated is Alabama’s Reggie Ragland but his stock has fluctuated in some draft publications. Others that are climbing into the 1st round include Ohio State OLB Darron Lee, who has successfully transformed from an offensive weapon to a defensive star, and Georgia’s talented 3-4 OLB Leonard Floyd. Both could make a big jump with good Combines. Floyd is great but is not really a fit for the Falcons.

Defensive Tackles: This is the deepest field of Defensive Tackles we have seen in a long time. There are so many DTs on this year’s big board that the Falcons could wait until the 2nd round and get a very productive brute. Still, at #17 there are some tempting prime beef cuts that can truly harrass the Quarterback like Louisville’s Sheldon Rankins, Baylor’s Andrew Billings, Louisiana Tech’s Vernon Butler and Alabama’s Jarran Reed. I am guessing Reed teammate, A’Shawn Robinson, will be taken just ahead of us or he would be a fine pick too.

MY CHOICES AT #17:

Untitled-7Noah Spence – DE – Spence is the best edge rusher that the Senior Bowl scouts said they have seen in a while. Bosa is the best overall DE in this draft with his overall defense but Spence is the better pass rusher. They were gushing over him the entire Senior Bowl week and I was watching the whole week, too. He is a true game changer, the kind that opposing coaches lose sleep over. Spence is raw in the run game but strong enough and stout enough to set the edge (at Eastern Washington he was constantly double teamed), which is why I believe he can eventually dominate in a 4-3. Even if he is designated as a 3rd down specialist while he learns the NFL ropes, he will still be an impact player. Spence was recruited by Quinn as a high school 5-star prospect and has been dominant on every field he’s set foot. He has had issues with drugs but has been clean for over a year. He also had a minor disorderly conduct charge and must answer for that. In his post Senior Bowl interviews (on several stations) he was very well spoken, contrite and cordial to every reporter on the field. NFL teams have very successful mentoring programs and the Falcons locker room is bursting at the seems with leaders who can keep this young man grounded while he hunts NFC South quarterbacks.

Untitled-8Shaq Lawson – DE – Lawson plays hungry and is relentless when homing in on the Quarterback. He is large and bulky but has quickness and all the moves and attitude we would want in a Defensive End. His projections are all over the 1st round, landing him anywhere from the late 20’s to near top-10. Scouts may be waiting to check his mobility at the Combine. Shaq injured his knee pretty badly in the semifinal game and then played through it admirably in the Final. If he tests really well, we may not see him at #17.

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Untitled-9DE/DT Jonathan Bullard – Every time I saw Bullard play he dominated the line of scrimmage. He is a true disrupter who blows up plays inside and outside. I have heard some concerns about lack of athleticism and tweener size but I scoff at that. My eyes usually don’t deceive me when noticing athletes that are playing at another level of talent or intelligence than their opposition. He has the football smarts, a great motor, and has been whooping my Dogs’ offensive line for years. Also, Quinn coached Bullard at Florida in 2012 and they may have a great connection.

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Untitled-10Darron Lee – OLBLee is an exceptional athlete and exactly the type of fast, sideline to sideline tackler the Falcons need. For 2 years he was super-productive in every category including TFLs and sacks. Lee’s downside is his tweener size as well as a few coverage technique issues, but overall he’s a great matchup player for fast Tight Ends and Running Backs, which has been a sore spot for the Falcons for years. Lee also had 12 sacks in the past 2 seasons.

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ROUND 2 (#50):

So far, so good. We either got a DE, an LB or a DT. Our defense is already better. Now what? Here is where Quinn may try shore up his offense. Possibly with a Wide Receiver? Guard? Center? Let’s look at a few offensive positions and then bring in some defensive spots too.

Wide Receiver – There are many really solid pass catchers in the vicinity of the 50th pick. Ohio State’s Braxton Miller, Pittsburgh’s Tyler Boyd, Oklahoma’s Sterling Shepherd, Notre Dame’s Will Fuller, Clemson’s Charone Peake and South Carolina’s Pharoh Cooper could be available here. All these players who could rise and fall dramatically with their Combine scores, as is always the case with WRs and good or bad 40 times, among other tests. The 2nd Round would be a really good time in this draft to find Roddy’s eventual replacement, if the Falcons do not choose Free Agency. I think they will sign somebody and not use a high pick on a WR.

Guard – In most drafts this is normally a good place to grab a top Guard that could contribute right away but there aren’t many prospects here that fit the ZBS. Kansas State’s Cody Whitehair should be gone by #50. There could be a rise in one or more Guards after the Combine, which happens every year. My guess is Stanford’s Joshua Garnett’s stock will rise with some good scores. He received several compliments during Senior Bowl practices and played well in the game.

Center – This year the Falcons have quite a selection of Centers of all sizes and talents in a good class. Prospects in the 2nd round include Alabama’s Ryan Kelly and Notre Dame’s Nick Martin. Either would make an instant starter for our team. Michigan State’s Jack Allen’s stock is rising too and he would start right away on our team as well.

Safety – With the loss of William Moore there may be an effort to get Safety help in both the draft and free agency. In the draft there are some good prospects worthy of a 2nd round pick. Ohio State’s Vonn Bell, Duke’s Jeremy Cash and West Virginia’s Karl Joseph are elite athletes and are all rated in this area, as well as flashy unknowns like Southern Utah’s Miles Killebrew.

Linebacker – If we didn’t take an LB in round one, or if Quinn decides to double down on LBs, there are still some good sideline-to-sideline backers in this area. Missouri’s Kentrell Brothers, LSU’s Deion Jones and USC OLB Su’a Cravens are all fine 2nd level players.

Defensive Tackle – There are some really good choices for DT in the 2nd round. Notre Dame’s Sheldon Day, Penn State’s Austin Johnson and Ohio State’s Adolphus Washington could be here although Day should not after his impressive Senior Bowl work. If he is, we should bull rush the podium.

MY CHOICES AT #50:

Untitled-11DT Sheldon Day – Day can play all over the line of scrimmage. When the Dallas coaches put him at DE at the Senior Bowl he was almost unstoppable in one-on-ones against the top O-Tackles in practice. He also had a sack in the game. Day has outside speed rush that short, stout D Linemen usually don’t possess, similar to a heavier Dwight Freeney. This is a guy I think Quinn would love to coach.

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Untitled-12OLB Deion Jones – is similar to OSU’s Darron Lee in size and play but without the recognition until the Senior Bowl. He was in on several plays and was good in pursuit on the edges. Scouts were noticing that his game speed is much better than his practice speed. Jones is very instinctive at sorting out plays and finding the ball in the air. He is not the biggest of LBs but in what I saw against the all-stars, he is a good tackler in space and was always around the ball.

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Untitled-13SS Miles Killebrew –The Southern Utah product continues to rise up in the draft. Killebrew was the focus of much attention at the Senior Bowl. His combination of size, aggression and speed is intoxicating to NFL defensive coaches. His downfield agility and awareness will be under scrutiny at the Combine as will his interviews, but the upside is a big, fast Strong Safety.

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Untitled-14OG Joshua Garnett – He played well in the Senior Bowl, moving fluidly on run plays and holding the interior defensive push on pass plays. He looked smaller in the game than I thought he would be, possibly because he was moving so well. He fits Shanahans’ mobile profile.

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ROUND 3 (#81)

By now we should have a defensive stud or two or possibly an offensive lineman or a wide receiver. If Quinn doubles down on defense, all the better. Pick #81 is where a possible decision on a Wide Receiver or interior Offensive Lineman could be made if they didn’t already pull the trigger on one in Round Two. They may also be looking for a Safety to groom if not already chosen in the previous round or a disruptive Defensive Tackle. Let’s see what positions we want to prioritize here…

Center – There is still a chance to get a potential starter in this round if Michigan State’s Jack Allen is still available. In both the national playoff and the Senior Bowl, Allen was the model of consistency. His only knock is size and that may drop him right into our lap at #81. Michigan’s Graham Glasgow could be a possibility here as he has shown well in recent games. His height (6’6”) for a Center could be an issue with some teams but he can also play Guard and blocked well against all-stars in both the E-W Shrine game and the Senior Bowl.

Guard – Arkansas’ Sebastian Tretola showed off some good movement at the Senior Bowl and needs to be included here. He is mammoth but I saw him several times where he was dozens of yards downfield on long plays. Depending on his Combine, Arizona State’s Christian Westerman, although presently rated in the 4th round, may come into play for the Falcons as early as the #81 pick.

Wide Receiver – There are a few receivers to examine here and they are not the most heralded. Cal’s Kenny Lawler and Colorado State’s Rashad Higgins are taller WRs from good offensive programs. MSU’s Aaron Burbridge showed well at the Senior Bowl getting open alot with sure-handed catches.

Defensive Tackle – Temple’s Matt Ionnidis was a load at Senior Bowl practice and was very active in the game. He was impressing coaches and TV broadcasters too. South Carolina State’s Javon Hargrove was visited by the Falcons scouts at the Shrine game and is really jumping up boards.

MY CHOICES AT #81:

Untitled-15OC Jack Allen – One of the 3 best OCs in this draft. His stock started rising during the Senior Bowl. He had checked all the boxes in what is required of an NFL Center except one – size. He checked that box and then some in the first Bowl practice, holding off the biggest of big men in one-on-ones with a solid anchor. That’s really all the scouts needed to see. We would be fortunate to see him at #81.

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Untitled-16OG Christian Westerman – A solid technician with great balance and hand placement, Westerman has been called ‘NFL ready’ for two years. Comparisons to Alex Mack are good enough for me. His stock may rise dramatically as well if he impresses at the Combine. As it is now, he shouldn’t last past the 3rd round.

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Untitled-17WR Aaron Burbridge – The Michigan State star runs all the routes, finds open spots for his QB, has great hands and seems to catch most of the jump balls thrown his way. Despite what his profile states, he caught everything thrown his way during Senior Bowl week as well as playing well in the college semi-final. He has good hops and works well in heavy traffic.

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Untitled-18DT Matt Ioannidis – The Temple star was very impressive from day one of Senior Bowl week. He was complimented several times about his quickness. Matt’s high effort on every snap was evident to all and sparked good energy.

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4TH ROUND (#115):

Here at the last pick of consequence with only a 7th round pick remaining. Going with my original idea of the Bowl games’ talent numbers overflowing, the 4th round should be loaded with NFL stalwarts in the making. At least we could find a good rotational defensive player, but we need to be vigilant in these middle rounds for offensive weapons.

MY CHOICES AT #115:

Untitled-19Defensive End – Oklahoma’s Charles Tapper is a strong DE/DT specializing in the bull rush as well as bein a good tackler. He has been discussed as a fit in the 4-3.

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Untitled-20Safety –Middle Tennessee’s Kevin Byard looked pretty solid at the Senior Bowl defending the sideline on a few pass plays. Byard snagged 19 career interceptions and made 310 career tackles.

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Untitled-21Linebacker – FSU’s Terrance Smith is a solid LB who has been productive for 3 years. Why he is rated this low and played so well in the Shrine game (and not the Senior Bowl) is still a mystery to me unless it is his overall strength. He had 210 career college tackles in 5 seasons. Smith should put up good numbers at the Combine with his sprinter speed.

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Untitled-22Wide Receiver – Geronimo Allison is my #1 sleeper Wide Receiver. He flashed brightly in the Shrine game, getting a last second invite from Phil Savage to the Senior Bowl, and playing well there too. Geronimo averaged 14 yards per catch in the past two seasons.

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Untitled-23Wide Receiver – Paul McRoberts is my sleeper pick #2 of the Wide Receivers. The Combine made a big mistake snubbing him after he has already shown very well in the Senior Bowl. His size, soft hands and catch radius are impressive. He high-pointed a contested ball perfectly on a sideline pass in the game. Paul is also an accomplished punt and kickoff returner. Despite his thin frame he has great body control.

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Finally the 7th round:

Here is my list of candidates. Although I gave choices in the previous 4 rounds, in this round I will make my call. I have a reason. All prospects on this list may jump into the 6th round or higher with good Combines…or they may not be invited at all and they show off their skills at their teammates’ Pro Days. Hopefully some will sign with us as UDFAs.

WR/KR Derek Keaton – If only he didn’t have fumbling issues, wow. The guy has Antonio Brown-like moves. He jumps out of tackles and changes direction like a water bug. If anyone can find a replay of the GSU Bowl game, watch him return punts. It is rare to see those kind of moves.

WR/KR Jakeem Grant – Speed, speed, speed. A 4.35 Forty is not out of the question with Grant. He had 4 kickoff returns for TDs in his career, 2 this season. He is in the top 10 nationally in several categories including all purpose yards.

OC Mike Matthews – Bloodlines don’t usually lie. Practicing in the same camp as his brother may bring out a fine depth OC and ST player.

OC Jake Brendel – From what I saw in the Shrine game, I wouldn’t complain if he were brought in, the same feeling I have about Matthews. The difference between the two is Brendel looks like he could play Guard.

S – Doug Middleton – This could be a special talent. In college he played all 3 defensive secondary positions, FS, SS & CB. He may go earlier.

S – Kenny Iloka – NFL bloodlines, his brother George is presently a successful NFL Strong Safety (and he’s a free agent, Coach Quinn!). I can imagine signing George and then picking his younger brother up either here or as a UDFA. Another family coaching situation that could work.

QB – Matt Johnson – A real gamer. Short but has amazing passing stats.

QB – Jake Rudock – Another tough guy who is a QB. He has the IQ and a quick release too.

TE – Steven Scheu – An inline blocking Tight End with decent hands from a smart school. I can think of worse 7th-UDFA picks.

TE – Adam Fuehne – Another talented Saluki Tight End. They must have a Tight End factory up there at Southern Illinois after MyCole Pruitt impressed at the Combine last year.

My choice at #206 (or so):

Untitled-24QB Jake Rudock – He’s a gutsy QB with a good arm. His last minute drive at the Senior Bowl featured several good plays on his part including a 4th down throw. Rudock was a 3-year starter on one of football’s biggest stages and he improved his QB rating every year. We need QB churn with Renfree’s dead money almost negligible. It’s either here or trying out some UDFAs because we need our first 4 picks for other needs.

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That’s it! Let me know what you think. Thanks for reading!

photo art and pic selection by JWW

 

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860 thoughts on “Shopping for a Championship

  1. John Waynesworld

    Dewey, even though I really like Shaq (imo, he will be taken before #17) I would still take Dodd. His college production was different from Jamaal’s at Arkansas. Anderson was decently productive in his 2 years but with an abnormal amount of sacks in his last. Dodd was barely a factor in his 2 years before 2015 when he exploded in every category. You are right he did do much better in big games. Even in the mid-season game against Notre Dame, which was much publicized, he had a huge game.

    Reply
    1. Dewey

      JWW, I’ve liked Shaq all season, but as he started climbing draft boards, it started looking less likely we could land him, I’m still holding out hope though. The way I’ve seen Shaq and Dodd, is Shaq is the more solid, less spectacular player, while Dodd seems to have more big play potential. If we had a solid 8-9 players on defense already, I would be all in on Dodd, as it is, I’m still hoping for Shaq.

      I usually shy away from players who have only started one year, with the exception being players like Dodd and Shaq, who had to wait their turn behind some really good players on some really good defenses.

      Reply
  2. Grits Blitz

    Chop – If Miles Killebrew is any, any, anything like Ronnie Lott and we could get him, please ink his contract… yesterday. (Forget about waiting for
    the draft; get Trump to broker a deal with him at Arthur’s Roundtable, if need be.)
    A real stud like that (R. Lott) could turn a whole defense totally around and onto the very right track in 2 years! Any team you know may need
    that kind of a player?

    Reply
    1. Chop Buster

      Grits, look at some of his highlights online. This guy knocks everyone back he tackles and hits them like a lightening bolt. He has the size to be played in a Cam Chancellor type role as well.

      Reply
  3. Dewey

    I usually don’t put a lot of stock in the combine, unless there’s a player that I didn’t get to see during the season. I didn’t watch a single Ohio State game this year (not an accident). Now I’m wishing I had. Joshua Perry, MLB, Ohio State looks like a player. Supposedly not that good in pass coverage, but does seem to have some blitz potential. Really big, great speed for his size. If the MLB spot hasn’t been dealt with by the 3rd round of the draft, he could be an option.

    http://www.nfl.com/combine/profiles/joshua-perry?id=2555326

    Reply
    1. medallion

      I watched a couple, but not a lot, of Ohio Sate games this year (on purpose). I wasn’t focused on evaluating players during the games I watched, but my blurred memory is that Joshua Perry was solid in the couple of games I watched. I don’t recall anything spectacular or anything that seemed bad which implies he had decent technique/tackling and understanding of his assignments.
      What really got my attention a while back is that coaches/writers put him on the 1st team defensive team in the Big 10/11/12 whatever it is now when the more highly touted LB prospect from Ohio State – Darron Lee – was 2nd team on their lists.

      Reply
  4. Dewey

    med,

    Saw you questioned the salary cap room on a previous post, so I thought I’d help ease your mind. You are correct to question this. The professional journalist (snicker) in question didn’t bother checking his facts. His figure of $30,670,495 in cap space obviously came from spotrac.com, as they are the only ones who have come up with a hard number. However, had the professional journalist(snicker again) in question bothered to even glance at the page, he would have seen that for some reason, spotrac already had us releasing Soliai, with a cap savings of $2,637,500. (1) we haven’t to my knowledge released Soliai yet, (2) that is the cap savings if we cut him pre June 1st, and all reports are he will be released with a post June 1st designation which would result in a cap savings of $5,437,500, but this money can’t be touched until after June 1st, which does nothing for free agency or the draft.

    Anyway, so unless Soliai has been released, you need to subtract the $2,637,500 in cap savings from the $30,670,495. Comes to $28,033,995, this is more than likely our cap space right now (or damn close to it).

    As far as some of your other questions, depending which site you look at, we have about 45 players under contract right now.
    We have 5 players signed to league minimum ($450,000) and 1 player at $451,000 (don’t ask me why).
    We have a total of 16 players who are signed for $601,334 or less, so plenty of room for the 51 rule.

    The 2016 salary cap as been announced at $155,270,000.
    We were $3,905,769 under the cap in 2015, which we have chosen to “rollover” into 2016, so our salary cap is $159,175,769(or thereabouts).

    Disclaimer-I have pieced this together from various sites and since I’m not being paid to write this, I feel no guilt whatsoever if my numbers are off a few hundred thousand.

    Reply
  5. Dewey

    Last point of the evening……

    I’ve been reading a lot of the Falcons have interest in this DE, this LB, this WR, this S in both free agency and the draft. Haven’t heard anything about Olinemen………………….yet some folks think Tater doesn’t have anything to do with player personnel anymore. Shame on you.

    Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      DQ has publicly stated that changes to the OL were coming – in particular was unhappy with the center play. Pay atention and you won’t be such a “doubting Thomas”. There will be at least two new interior OL in 2016. Falcons met with OL at East West game, Sr. Bowl and at the combine.

      Sure Dimwitroff has something to do with player personnel – he sends them their checks.

      Reply
      1. Flo-Ri-Duh

        I just put up a list of players Falcons met with and OL were on the list. (www.walterfootball.com)
        [2/27 @ 9:42 pm] – Since the list others have been contacted. Falcons also will be at several “pro days”.

        You probably know that Falcons cannot contact other teams UFA’s yet – would be tampering.

        Reply
        1. Flo-Ri-Duh

          Dewey is this aimed at me? – I’ve said before it’s not “you are wrong or right”. It’s your opinion – it’s not “I’m right or wrong” it’s my opinion. It’s opinion. If you will agree to lighten up on me I will do the same as I didn’t start this diatribe. I’ve been told my opinion is wrong plenty of times by you and others. Fine- doesn’t bother me but I’m not allowed to respond when referred to by name? No one is perfect here. No one has to agree with everything everyone else says. It would be awful boring.

          Please reconsider and we’ll see if we can get along like adults. I’ll tone it down if you will. I won’t respond to your opinions if you won’t respond to mine. We’ll just ignore each other if you wish but come on back man.

          Reply
          1. Paddy O

            not sure what you are talking about. Just saying that cutting Hawley was a really stupid move.

        2. Flo-Ri-Duh

          Paddy 0 – I wasn’t commenting on what you said. Sorry if you thought I was. That’s why I often put the name of the person I’m talking to before my comment. I didn’t this time – sorry. I definiely agree we need a new center – and at least one new guard. Would also hope they re-sign Chester (G) 1 year for depth. Don’t know what to do about Levitre – hope they do.

          Reply
  6. Grits Blitz

    Flo & Dewey- At least with the revamped scouting dept. and all the new, supposedly more intelligent and soon-to-be highly effective scouting personnel that “somebody” (?) hired, we’ll now have heretofore undiscovered talent coming out of the woodwork! Won’t it be wonderful?

    Wonder if it will be “acceptable” by DQ and TD to just take what they can get in F.A. (“best FA available” & regardless of position needs, O line inc., since gaping holes abound everywhere) or will we actually discover they have a real, dare I say it,…PLAN in place? (A plan, that is, after F.A. to then target who would be acceptable to draft for position need “prioritizing”.)

    Of course, these 2 buds could just default to being impatient and always trade up for their new “golden boy/idol ” to acquire at any price!
    (T.D. could easily “advise” D.Q. he’s done it before, has “experience”, and convince D.Q. we only have a few draft choices this year, anyway, so this would clearly be the optimum time to pull this trigger…while the P.T. Barnum Band played on.)

    Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      [][][][][]- DQ’S “NEED FOR SPEED” Post-Combine Mock Draft::UNDERSTANDING POSITIONAL VALUE -[][][][][]
      [][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][]- NEW SHERIFF-HIS NAME IS DQ! – can’t divulge my source 🙂 -[][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][][]
      —————————————————————————————————————————————————–
      *Trade Down: [Falcons’ 17th pick] for [Texan’s 22nd (1st) & 85th (3rd) plus vet David Quessenberry (OT)]
      -Texans draft 17th pick 1s Rd: Paxton Lynch (QB)

      #1 Emmanuel Ogbah,(DE), Oklahoma State, 6’4″ 275 lb. [4.63 40-same as Khalil Mack! : 2nd fasted DL at combine] [starter]
      #2 Miles Killebrew (SS), Southern Utah, 6’1″ 219 lb. [Clock off at combine: has a verified 4.43 40 (nfl.com)] [starter]
      #3 Nick Martin (C), Notre Dame, 6’4″ 296 lb. [5.22 40 // 28 reps bench press at combine] [starter]
      #3 Jaylon Smith (OLB), Notre Dame, 6’3″ 229 lb. [Falcons’ Dr’s said worth risk in 3rd Rd] – acquired in Texans’ trade [redshirt]
      #4 Matt Loannidis (DT/NT),Temple, 6’3″ 303 lb. [Rock vs dbl teams: versatile 3-4 NT/ 4-3 DT: 32 reps BP combine] [co-starter]
      #7 Rees Odhiambo (G) Boise State, 6’4″ 301 lb. [broken ankle kept him from combine – NFL starter skill set] [redshirt or depth?]
      …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..
      UFA signings:
      WR – Mohamed Sanu, Bengals, 6’2″ 210 lb. [Hankerson without the injuries or bad hands] – 2 yr [starter]
      TE – Ben Watson, Aint’s, 6’3″ 255lb. [Had best year of his career – no signs of slowing down] – 1 yr [co-starter]
      ILB – Danny Trevathan, Broncos, 6’1″ 244 lb. [Pro Bowl ILB – Worrilow moves to OLB] – 4 yr [starter]
      OLB – Tavir Whitehead, Lions, 6’2″ 241 lb. [Cover & tackle skills equal to Durant minus injuries] – 3 yr [starter]
      G – Ramon Foster, Steelers, 6’5″ 328 lb. [much needed SIZE, NASTY & leadership] – 2 yr [starter]
      CB – Jeremy Lane, Seahawks, 6′ 180 lb, [upgrade over Adams] – 2 yr [competes for starter at nickel]
      OT – Ryan Harris, Broncos, 6′ 4″ 310 lb. -1 yr [depth]
      WR- Brian Quick, Cardinals, 6’3″ 218 lb. -1 yr [depth]
      ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………
      RFA – Ryan Schraeder (OT) 1st Rd tender [starter]
      RFA – Paul Worrilow (ILB/OLB) 2nd Rd tender [could move to OLB] [competes at OLB to start]
      RFA – Nate Stupar (OLB) not tendered but re-signs 2 yr [depth]
      ERFA – Ricardo Allen (FS) re-signs [competes with Therezie to start]
      …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
      UFA’s re-signed: 4
      Chris Chester (G) – 1 yr [competes with Levitre for starting position]
      Adrian Clayborn (DE) – 2 yr [depth]
      O’Brien Schofield (OLB) – 1 yr [depth]
      …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
      Released: 9
      William Moore (SS)
      Paul Soliei (NT)
      Devin Hester (WR)
      Levine Toilolo (TE)
      Malliciah Goodman (DE)
      James Stone (C)
      Tyler Starr (OLB)
      Nick Williams (WR)
      Justin Durant (OLB)

      Reply
    2. Flo-Ri-Duh

      Grits – I know from long term experience the draft. etc has been disappointing for th Falcons. I’m just trying to give DQ a chance to get it right. He’s just getting started. If he fails to get it right I’ll join you in your pessimism. Just trying to stay positive. Not going in to it here but have had some recent health concerns to deal with and I’m trying to stay positive.

      Reply
      1. Grits Blitz

        Flo – Sorry to hear of your health concerns and hope improvement for you is soon “around the corner”.
        Stay positive. No problem here. I’ve just reached a saturation point where I can’t stomach any more excuses, co. lines, bargain basement
        acquisitions being passed off as “great deals”, acquiring “emergency” personnel due to lack of planning and preparation, coaches that can’t
        coach or control their adult emotions, incompetent FO/GM, disconnected owner etc..
        Until the product on the field remotely matches the Big 3 rhetoric, I’m riding the MO. RR – for the entire ride, all the way!
        (We’re now only 1-2 years away from knowing the FULL truth. It’s the preview to date of what is already known that is scary.)

        Reply
        1. Flo-Ri-Duh

          Grits- I will have a test done on me thursday (10th) where I will have to be put to sleep. Probably will be the best rest I’ve had in years. I’m not worried. God has already healed me. Thanks for your support.

          Falcons did have a couple of good years there but the last three have been disappointing for sure. I do see a move in the right direction with DQ on board. He knows what he is doing if AB will just let him do it. Still waiting on Falcons 1st Super Bowl victory. It will be a long time coming.

          Reply
          1. Flo-Ri-Duh

            Paddy 0 – Thanks. I got th results of one test back wednesday and it was good and I give God all the credit for that. Cystoscopy procedure is next thursday (10th) in Tifton and I’m expecting it to b good. I really don’t feel bad – it’s fine.

  7. Flo-Ri-Duh

    Falcons won’t filter out players who have overcome off-field issues.(Vaughn McClure) Each case will be considered seperately one on one.

    Keith Marshall (RB) will be compensated by Addidas for having the fastest 40 time at the combine – $50,000 (247sports.com)

    Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      JWW – Now you know DQ doesn’t want to give info to the enemy so that’s why the misdirection and “lawyer” talk. I’m excited by the FACT the Falcons were one of only two teams to beat Carolina. I’ll be excited if they get the right guys to fill holes on the roster. That’s when I’ll get really excited. We all know we need #1) interior OL, at least two new starters, center and guard expected #2) a 3 down Base DE that can pressure the QB #3) ILB & OLB help & lots of it. #4) a SS that can cover & tackle #5) better depth at WR & TE. #5) better roster depth. Whew! They better get busy.

      Reply
  8. Dewey

    Arno,

    You’re doing a great job with the cage. Really awesome. When the ball was lying on the ground, everyone just looked at it. You picked it up and ran with it. Keep up the fantastic work.

    Cagers,

    I will no longer be a member of these pages. It’s just not fun anymore. When I first came to these pages years ago, it was a place where people had opinions, agreed with them or disagreed with them, and had discussions about them. And they were good, constructive discussions. Now, particularly the last 8-10 months, the cage has become a site with a singular opinion. And if you don’t share that particular opinion, you are told you are wrong. No discussions, no “in my opinion”, you’re just wrong. Sometimes, extra effort will be taken to let you know how wrong you are. I tried to ignore it, but when I’m told seemingly every opinion I have is wrong, it’s time to move on. That is not how I’d like to spend my leisure time. It’s getting to where you can’t even make a “light hearted” comment without being corrected. I’m still a Falcons fan and will continue to monitor their off season moves, watch the draft and of course every game I can during the season. I will just do so as I did before I found the cage. Good luck guys and gals. Maybe we’ll lift that trophy one day.

    FIRE THE ROTTEN TATER!!!!!!

    GO FALCONS!!!!

    Reply
    1. SinIsIn

      I certainly hope you reconsider. I have learned a LOT about football in general and our team in particular from your comments, which are always insightful, well researched, and delivered in a polite and respectful way. Please don’t deprive those of us who really really enjoy reading your thoughts just because SOME PEOPLE don’t know how to be part of an online community without making posts that come across as rude (even if rudeness might not be their actual intention).

      Reply
    2. gman

      Dewey, In all honestly, I hope you stay and others go. You have a sensible approach to your opinion vs facts. Others believe their opinion IS fact. Stick around brother, I don’t believe you are in the minority here.

      Reply
    3. Arno

      I actually agree with you, Dewey. For the reasons you cited, my enjoyment of the Cage is taking a big hit. My solution– I exercise my right to leave those posts utterly unread and un-commented upon. And in fairness, folks sure don’t have to give my comments the time of day, either. But if you leave, the Cage will take a bigger hit! In all respect, I hope you’ll venture back real soon.

      Reply
    4. Chop Buster

      I don’t have as much to add to the Cage during this time of year, but have enjoyed reading your comments. Sorry to hear your leaving and taking your opinions with you–they are valued.

      Reply
    5. JB Falcon

      Dewey, very sorry to read of your intention and would like for you to re-consider before you deprive the cage of your valuable opinions. Unfortunately, we can’t FIRE THE ROTTEN TATER in order to improve the Falcons so we live with it, we don’t become non-fans/participants. The cage is, and always has been, as you stated, one of the greatest blogs for fans to share opinions WITHOUT argumentative and rude statements following each post, whether intentional or not. We also can’t fire any cagers but, as Arno so wisely stated, we also have the option of skipping, and not replying to, any post that we chose. I, and many others, have been a Falcon fan and participant of the cage for many years, We’ve seen participants come and go over the years and we’re still here. From what I have learned about you as a person by reading your posts, I will be very disappointed if you carry through with your intentions of leaving the cage. So will a lot of others.

      Reply
      1. falcon21

        Dewey, I totally agree with what JB said. I enjoy your comments as does 99.9% of the Cage. I don’t post much during the off season but I do read everyday. Hang with us man, you are needed!!!

        Reply
    6. JB Falcon

      I found this posted in the wrong place, in my opinion.
      Flo-Ri-Duh
      March 1, 2016 at 3:07 pm
      Dewey is this aimed at me? – I’ve said before it’s not “you are wrong or right”. It’s your opinion – it’s not “I’m right or wrong” it’s my opinion. It’s opinion. If you will agree to lighten up on me I will do the same as I didn’t start this diatribe. I’ve been told my opinion is wrong plenty of times by you and others. Fine- doesn’t bother me but I’m not allowed to respond when referred to by name? No one is perfect here. No one has to agree with everything everyone else says. It would be awful boring.

      Please reconsider and we’ll see if we can get along like adults. I’ll tone it down if you will. I won’t respond to your opinions if you won’t respond to mine. We’ll just ignore each other if you wish but come on back man.

      Reply
    7. PoolerSpirit

      Dewey… I agree with you…. the Cage isn’t much fun any more. I’d just thought about it this morning. Your posts were one of the bright spots on here… Hope you’ll come back on regularly, and hope that JWW will email you and get you to come back and see that most people on here want your active participation in the Cage. And SW’s… And D3’s… And a dozen more who seem to have dropped off…

      Reply
    8. medallion

      Dear Dewey:
      I ask you to reconsider your decision – mainly for selfish reasons since I think your writing, analysis, and opinions have been so much better than the drivel that comes from so many paid writers.
      I have also enjoyed the friendly barber shop type discussing of opinions during the times when we have had different opinions. Some of those resulted in me changing my opinion. We have also shared common opinions so much that one Cager asked if were the same person. I laughed to some extent because you and I have discussed differences of opinions many times (certainly implying not the same person), but, more importantly, I felt flattered to be compared to you.
      Consider also that so many other Cagers (in just a short time to comment) clearly want you to reconsider also. Franchise Tag no less!!!
      You must have had fun to put so much effort into your feature posts (and so many other writings) and I suggest you should not allow that fun be derailed merely by one or more other Cagers writing whatever has ticked you off because there’s lots of fun in the Cage.
      Name a Falcons’ blog site that comes up with the jokes (from written to illustrations to pictures, etc) that are funny and make a good point at the same time. Some of the best jokes come from Cagers that don’t come across as jokesters, but then, out of the blue, a zinger joke arrives from one of them and they are, IMO, so much fun to read.
      Med

      Reply
    1. SinIsIn

      Nice find. Like all simpletons, I learn best when the truth is presented to me with brightly colored images 😉 Looks like we never bothered to consider investing more heavily in our DLine might make our cornerbacks more effective; we just kept looking for cornerbacks who can cover for an hour. Also, if we have drafted all those LBs and our best LB in several seasons is still an UdFA, or (lol) Lofton….wow. Just wow. I’m gonna spend the day looking to see which LBs were brought to Emery and Webster’s squads now. Cuz I’m genuinely worried about our ability to figure that one out in a draft instead of paying somebody competent’s ‘discovery’ @ LB out the rear to come to Atl.

      Reply
      1. John Waynesworld

        Haha, don’t I know that! Pretty colors always helps me learn. I look forward to your research on the sub-GMs’ decision making, SinIsIn. I can’t believe our present lead-GM drafted 4 LBs in 2014 and all 4 never played a meaningful snap in the NFL. Just 2 seasons later we need multiple Linebackers again, wow.

        My hope is that Dim gets consistently outvoted on every player he thinks is a fit for “his” team. He can sit in the corner and call out pressure plate explosion data on every prospect while the rest of the room all nod politely.

        Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      JWW – Jason Spriggs (OT) looks like a 1st Rd pick to me. He’s more than held his own against guys like Joey Bosa. I believe I read where Falcons intend to 1st Rd tender Schraeder. Otherwise, Spriggs would be a good pick for the Falcons. Charles Tapper (DE) should be a guy the Falcons take an interest in with their desire to upgrade the speed of the defense. If falcons don’t get their pass rusher in the 1st Rd Tapper may be their next best option.

      It’s a beautiful day down here in south Georgia. Guess winter is about over – never really had much of one down here. Lots of rain though for this time of year.

      Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      JWW – Falcons could sure use some of these guys. Still liking Danny Trevathan (ILB) as the Falcons lone big name UFA target. Then follow that up with a solid guard that’s maybe not quite as pricey.

      Reply
  9. Grits Blitz

    Dewey – As always, respect your opinions, my Cage brother. I also respect your decision.
    Hope you’ll just take a break and some time off. We all need to step away from the arena, at times.

    If truly not returning, hope you can create a new Falcons blog and, then, at least let us know where to find you!
    It would be a shame for your talents to be wasted. I’ve always enjoyed sharing some thoughts with you per your perspectives – on football & life.
    Thanks Dewey.

    Reply
  10. waynesworldreview

    I obviously missed something here… Dewey leaving the Cage? Over what? Another poster disagreeing disagreeably? C’Mon Fellas! Opinions are like A-Hs everybody has one and sometimes everybody IS one.
    Face Front and Forgive your Fellow Falcon’s Foibles, Friends…..

    Reply
  11. waynesworldreview

    One of my biggest concerns is proving justified.
    I’ve been keeping my fingers crossed and mocking OG Christian Westerman to us in the 3rd. He looks to me like the perfect OG(maybeOC) prospect for our scheme.
    Unfortunately, he’s not under the radar anymore and now I’m seeing him move up the big boards into the 2nd round. I was already looking for O-Line value in the 2nd (OC R Kelly my target) but was hoping to double-dip on the OLine in rounds 2 and 3….
    In round One, the player most of the post-combine mocks have us taking is UGA DE Floyd. I’m extremely leery of him since he absolutely runs hot & cold, just disappearing at times. I’d MUCH rather see us go DT in rd 1. Despite the large class, I expect a run on DLs in the mid-late 1st on into the 2nd, leaving our choices limited at #50. I’d rather take Andrew Billings at #17, a few spots earlier than most have him rated. He’s a MUCH more sure-fire prospect than any of the pass rushers that will be left (except maybe Darron Lee) based on most of the mocks I’m seeing. They’re comparing Billings with Geno Atkins and Andrew Donald. I’d hit that…..

    Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      waynesworldreview – Perfect analysis. Kelley (C) in the 2nd Rd would be an excellent choice to resolving interior OL musical chairs for years to come. Not sure he will be there at 50th pick but if he is Falcons should jump on him. Also with you on improving the Falcons interior DL with Andrew Billings (DT/NT). Falcons interior pass rush is almost non existent and they gave up the most rushing TD’s in the NFL in 2015 (20 I think). Not sure if Westerman will go 2nd or 3rd Rd but he’s another good choice. Hopefully Falcons can resolve the guard issues with a UFA signing and there are some good ones out there.

      Reply
  12. John Waynesworld

    McClure, refreshing stale articles like a good pay-per-click employee. Veteran WRs to the Falcons: A hotdog belch of a story…

    http://espn.go.com/blog/nflnation/post/_/id/199059/mohamed-sanu-travis-benjamin-best-receiver-options-for-falcons

    Really folks, there’s not much going on for a while. I will continue to find news stories to share with the Cage and occasionally pop off about something I heard or saw in the media, but if some of you need a break to get away from whatever or whoever is irking you, go ahead. I took a long time off in the middle of last season (I snapped somewhere during that losing streak) and it really helped my emotional fandom, so sometimes taking a break is healthy. All I ask is that our Cage family never says “never” about coming back.

    Besides, I’ve also got a little draft prospect game in the works that we could all play, regardless of “expertise”, haha. It would test our drafting skill versus the experts without much painful research. Don’t worry, I will do all the math for scoring. Prizes will include feel goodness, peer accolades, a promise of a T-shirt, and world domination.

    Seminole Warrior, I look forward to your post, let me know if you may need any extra time and I will offer my little contest as a time-filler. Mine is not time sensitive as long as it is before draft day.

    Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      JWW – Travis Benjamin (WR) would certainly be a nice, but expensive, addition. Only way I see that is if they release Roddy White; due to the expense. It could happen but I hope RW is back and has a solid 2016. Besides Falcons should concentrate on upgrading the OL, DL and LB positions first and that is where the resources should go in 2016. Build the foundation.

      Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      gman – Would be real happy with just one major upgrade at LB and ILB is considered to be the more important position. That is why Falcons should go with Trevathan if they have a choice. Either one is going to cost a boat load of dollars. One thing about Trevathan though – he missed three games in 2014 with a fracture in his left knee (www.bleacherreport.com) but was back 100% in 2015. Trevathan shared time in 2015 with Brandon Marshall at ILB. At times they were both in the game with Trevathan showing his versatility by moving to OLB.

      Reply
    2. Flo-Ri-Duh

      gman – Liked your link and the mock draft down below there started out strangely enough, much like my last mock: Trade down for Emmauel Ogbah (DE) in 1st picking up a 3rd Rd pick. They also picked up a 7th while I picked up a vet OT backup instead.

      Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      gman – Agree with you whole heartedly on Leadbelly (my nickname for DLed). Guess he means well but sometimes I read his stuff and wonder why he took up space with it. To be fair he occassionally has an interesting article. Thanks for the direct link. Your #1, #2, #3 would be a good start to fixing this defense. Then Falcons can maybe get one or two LB’s in UFA and of course some OL help. Your not stepping on my toes. I’m not that sensitive. Thanks for the reply.

      Reply
  13. SG

    From just the way I see our Talent Needs, I have to say I’m not on the Bruce Irvin bandwagon. Don’t get me wrong, he’d provide a formidable presence that’s been sorely lacking. But at what price? I don’t see Bruce coming here unless he foregoes the added $$$ many seem to think the Jags, w/ their deep cap pockets, will dangle in front of him to reunite w/ Gus. All things being equal, and I’m almost biting my tongue to write this, I’d go after Mario instead.

    As a leader / cohesive force? Bruce has more upside – and that may be a very critical key in DQ’s master plan – but for more immediate impact on the pass rush, I think Mario has the edge.

    Reply
    1. John Waynesworld

      SG, agree on all counts. Mario would have to take a deal as well for us to sign him. The problem with all this free agency talk is there are several teams with tankers full of money that would put every one of our reasonable bids to shame. After those other 31 teams make it rain on these FAs, we may end up yet again with more misfit toys.

      Reply
      1. Flo-Ri-Duh

        JWW – You are right; Falcons don’t have the cap to spend on big contracts right now as they have so many needs to fill. Maybe they can afford one upper level UFA and I would expect it to be a LB. They can sign a still good but older guy at guard to a one or two year deal and it won’t cost as much.
        There are some good guards out there in UFA. If they go there in UFA I would expect them to draft a center. At least that’s what I’m hoping for.

        Reply
      1. SG

        But how much do we really have to spend Flo?
        Bruce is a FA – no guaranteed money until he resigns.
        Mario got cut – as I understand it, the Bills still owe him some guaranteed cash. Wishful me is thinking that cash from the Bills gets us some leverage for a lower $$$ commitment if he wants to get to a warmer climate – not to mention getting him something he’s never had….the support of The Cage.

        Reply
        1. Flo-Ri-Duh

          SG – Falcons, last report I read, around $30 mill + cap space. They have to re-sign a few of their UFA’s, sign the guys they draft and pay their current roster of course. Their RFA’s if they re-sign them will cost a lot more than last year: Schraeder, Worrilow, etc. I will refer how much they have to spend on UFA’s to Medallion for now as he’s more in to the details of the cap. I’m more in to generalities. I can kind of figure it out later when I have some time but Med is the specialist on this.

          If you go by the “value pyramid” chart, and it depends on which defensive schemes you are running, the most important player the Falcons do not have set on defense is the NT/DT (if Soliei goes) and next is the ILB. The ILB is one of the most if not the most important players on the defense and we are lacking there with coverage skills. That’s why I go ILB over OLB first.

          There will be at least one or two more major cuts coming, just guessing here, so there will be more to spend. Unfortunately the dead money counts and it’s going to be a handicap for the Falcons eventually.

          Reply
    2. Flo-Ri-Duh

      SG- Mario isn’t quite what he used to be due to injury and age. I can say the same for me. Maybe they can sign him to a one or two year deal at a discount.

      Reply
  14. waynesworldreview

    Alex Mack voided the rest of his deal with CLE. Could still opt to stay in OH or we could buy him for a measly 10+mil/yr. Personally, I think he’d make a world of difference in Matt’s mental state not to mention his longevity behind an OLine that gives him some time to think…

    Reply
    1. SG

      “I think he’d make a world of difference in Matt’s mental state…..” Couldn’t agree more.

      And to flip that coin, what would it do for Mack’s mental state to not have that parade of confusion under center that includes, Brady Quinn, Jack DelHomme, Colt McCoy, Brandon Weeden, Brian Hoyer, Johnny Manziel ? —- all since 2009 when he entered the league.

      Reply
    2. Hamad Meander

      Wow! $10,000,000 a year when the front office could have kept Hawley at $3,000,000 a year. You don’t get what you don’t pay for though…..I’m not sure Mack is 3.33X Hawley in skill. I do want him on this team though there are other options in free agency at Center: Wisnieski, JD Walton, Ben Jones, etc. They way I see it, we need to address center, guard, and other guard in free agency AND sign Schraeder long term, so spending 10M on one position will certain make that harder.

      Reply
    3. Flo-Ri-Duh

      WWR – Wouldn’t that be a gift? Been a while since Falcons had a Pro Bowl center. He’s really going to be expensive – at least $8-$9 mill a year but he would make any OL he’s on much better. It’s just common sense that every play starts with the center and if he’s not dependable the offense won’t work.

      Reply
  15. waynesworldreview

    Alex Mack could be the key to helping our young Linemen grow up around a true professional/perennial pro-bowler. The more I seriously consider the cost/benefit of such a move the more I think we should Pay The Man and make this thing happen quickly–chase the suckers out by pushing all our chips in on a “Can’t- Say- No” deal and resolve the F-N’ problem completely and definitively. Then with the luxury of a couple of extra years, draft his replacement and plop his little a$$ right next to Mack at Guard to learn up-close how to be an NFL OC!!!!

    Reply
  16. John Waynesworld

    From DOL…

    “It’s expected to be a battle of former front office mates and former defensive coordinators in the quest to sign Seattle linebacker Bruce Irvin.

    The first shot was fired on Tuesday when Jacksonville general manager Dave Caldwell, a former assistant under Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff, hired away personnel executive DeJuan Polk.

    Jacksonville is coached by Gus Bradley, who was Irvin’s initial defensive coordinator in Seattle in 2012. Falcons coach Dan Quinn was his coordinator in 2013 and 2014 before landing the job with the Falcons.

    Polk, who was a pro personnel scout for the Falcons, was set to be demoted to a college scouting position. He has all of the information from meetings on the team view Irvin and other pros.”

    I do not like that last sentence.

    Reply
    1. SinIsIn

      We couldn’t expect to compete w Jax anyways if we were both eyeing the same player. They have WAY WAY WAY more $$$ ti throw around than us, and the $ is almost always the driving force in FA.

      Reply
    2. Flo-Ri-Duh

      JWW – Falcons, if the want Irvin that bad, should just make their best reasonable offer and if they get outbid move on to someone else. Lots’ of good UFA OLB’s out there. Jax is probably going to win this war due to what Sinisin said – they have lots of cap space. It’s possible that Irvin would take a discount if he really wants to play for DQ and be in Atlanta – like he said a year ago. They should settle the ILB question first anyway. That’s more important and Worrilow is not the answer.

      Reply
    1. waynesworldreview

      It represents a colossal waste of Ryan’s talent. Mack is a consummate professional and deserves to be remunerated . As for the other FA OCs, Jones looks good but likely to be re-signed. The other guys would just be band aids when we require a surgeon. Paging Dr. Mack!!

      Reply
    2. Flo-Ri-Duh

      Arno – I won’t disagree with that. Always felt center is the leader and glue that holds the OL together and makes it work. Falcons should consider going as high as $9 mill per year for 3 years. Another thing to consider though is there are other reasonable options (though not as good) with Ben Jones as a UFA or Kelley in the draft. So would you offer a really good deal to Jones (which would cost probably $4-5 mill per year) or spend double that on Mack who has maybe three years left before retiring? It’s nice to know we have some promising options here.

      Reply
  17. The Time is NOW

    The tough thing about evaluating free agency for me this year is that I recall an agreement from the owners to guarantee to pay something like 90% of their cap money every year. All those teams with a boatload of cap space are required to use it. That’s gonna make for some ridiculous contracts for the best UFA’s. You gotta spend it anyway, might as well be on the best players…

    Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      The Time is NOW – Don’t expect the Falcons to enter the high priced UFA sweep stakes this year. Maybe they go after one expensive guy and some “second tier” talent which would still be an upgrade. With their past history of striking out on big contracts I would actually prefer they spread the cash around on several players that would make an overall upgrade and not put all their eggs in one basket. The question is “just how much patience will AB have with developing this team considering he’s getting older every day?”

      Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      The Time is Now – Front loading a contract for a better cap space later was done a few years ago with Charles Johnson (DE). He was actually the highest paid player in the NFL that year (I think maybe $17 mill) – even higher than the QB’s. That would make a nice trivea question.

      Reply
      1. Flo-Ri-Duh

        And now that I talked about Charles Johnson (DE) and his big contract he gets released. He was out 2/3rds of the first part of 2015 (hamstring injury) but started the last 4-5 games including playoffs. He’s around age 29 I think and the salary cap got him. Maybe Falcons can look at him if he is healthy again and bring him in at a fair price. He got double digit sacks for four of the the past 5 years and age 29 isn’t exactly over the hill.

        Reply
    1. stevegorges

      True, as long as you can make the obviously easy ones – Like cutting TD and his Non-Rainman affinity for numbers.

      Reply
    2. Paddy O

      I don’t like the decision – it means you MUST either sign an FA or draft another WR. You have too many holes in the team as it is.

      Reply
      1. Flo-Ri-Duh

        Paddy 0 – Hate it for you my friend. Was hoping RW had one more good year and maybe retired but I don’t think retiring is on his mind. I will miss seeing RW out there kicking butt. It is indeed a sad day. Feels like losing a member of the family. Hard decisions to make.

        Reply
        1. Paddy O

          for me, it makes zero sense. he was still a very competent WR, and a fan favorite, and not really all that expensive. I would also think it would have an impact on player morale. this FO has no loyalty.

          Reply
    3. Flo-Ri-Duh

      gman – Very sad to see Roddy White released as I was expecting one final season in 2016. Just speculating here but maybe they offered to “restructure” his contract or maybe not? Any way his agent said no to a cut (at least for the papers). Roddy White was among their few ultra successful draft picks. Guess the writing was on the wall with the Falcons interviewing a projected 2nd Rd draft pick (Will Fuller) at the Combine and also inquiring in to the UFA market for a starter like Travis Benjamin. Just hope Falcons learned a lesson and won’t trade UP for a WR in this draft in the 1st Rd. Keep focused on the OL/DL and ILB first. It’s much more likely now that Falcons go after Travis Benjamin or Sanu in free agency.

      This was a difficult decision for sure and part of the problem is we don’t know if RW was declining that much physically or the offensive scheme wasn’t a fit for him. The guys that see him in practie every day should know the answer to that. I expect RW will find a home with Jax now and I wish him the best of success in his life and future. Would like to thank Roddy White for his contirbutions to the Falcons team. Thanks Roddy and good luck.

      Reply
  18. JB Falcon

    How can anyone point to Roddy’s lack of production in 2015 as a reason for cutting him?? Why do’t they cut that little snot nosed punk OC who refused to call any plays going to Roddy or the Spikey Haired SOB who pretends to be a GM? SSDD!

    B

    Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      JB – Yeah it’s a hard pill to swallow. I’m not real happy about it myself. Unfortunately if it’s the OC’s scheme to fault he will probably get his walking papers NEXT YEAR and it will be to late for Roddy.

      Reply
  19. JB Falcon

    If White catches on with Tampa Bay, reunites with former Falcons offensive coordinator and current Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter, and enjoys a productive season alongside Jameis Winston, it might leave the Falcons second-guessing their decision. The same holds true if White joins forces with Marcus Mariota in Tennessee, where former Falcons wide receivers coach Terry Robiskie is now the offensive coordinator and former Falcons offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey is now the head coach.
    http://espn.go.com/blog/atlanta-falcons/post/_/id/19259/roddy-white-will-be-missed-in-atlanta-could-make-falcons-regret-decision

    Reply
  20. Arno

    They had to release Roddy. Given how beloved he is in Atlanta, nobody could tolerate watching him sit on the bench for another season. Do not read what Dimitroff said about releasing him.

    That leaves our WR corps at Justin Hardy, Devin Hester, Julio Jones, Eric Weems, Nick Williams, Leslie Jordan.

    Reply
    1. JB Falcon

      Roddy’s lack of production is due to not fitting in the “scheme” dreamed up in fantasy land by a moron. Anyone who leaves an older Porsche sitting in the garage and goes road racing with a new Corrolla is an idiot. If I come across as having a tremendous dislike for our OC it is not without reason. He has a track record of being a loser, has always been a loser, and will always be a loser because he is an idiot. DQ said of Sham, “He’s hard to defend against because you never know what he’s going to do.” Fact is, Sham himself has no idea what will happen when he decides to run some of his “schemes” made up in outer space.

      Reply
      1. Arno

        I know you’ve made up your mind about KS. You know I’m suspending my opinion until we get a cohesive o-line. What troubles me about Roddy’s lack of production was Matt Ryan seemingly unwilling to get Roddy in the game plans until very late in the year. Matt isn’t a robot. He’s got a voice and can get rowdy. Regarding Roddy’s role, Matt disappointed me as much as KS did.

        Reply
        1. Chop Buster

          Arno, Matt comes off to me as more of a “Company Man”. If asked his opinion I’m sure he has no problem giving it.

          Matt was still learning a new offense, as well as, Roddy not knowing the playbook. I just think Roddy’s release was a culmination of things (aging WR, wouldn’t take pay cut, etc.).

          Reply
          1. JB Falcon

            Agree CB, Company Man as in Yes Man. Arno, Matt ran, or tried to run, the plays that were called. If Roddy’s number wasn’t called, and it wasn’t, then MR did not throw, or try to throw, to Roddy. I seriously doubt that KS has ever played a down of football in his life and he has proven that doesn’t know anything about what is required to run his “scheme.” I have heard the scheme word too many times from too many players and coaches to not think that the scheme was flawed and the major cause of our 20125 collapse. I don’t care if we patch all of our holes and win the SB next year I will still hold a dear place on my sh!t list for KS. After skipping two games without calling a play for RW and one in the next the fans started raising H*ll. So the certified punk, in the next game called three passes in a row to Roddy just to show the fans that “I am running this team and will run it how I see fit and don’t give a rat’s azz what you think!”That, to me, is the sign of a vindictive, egotistical, s.o.b. He reminds me, kind of, Richard Petty’s (of NASCAR fame) son Kyle who tired riding his father’s coattails and found that he didn’t have what it takes.
            As far as MR’s poor performance in 2015, I do not think that Matt is going down hill. He was trying to adjust to the scheme requiring him to do things that did not call for the personal attributes that he excelled in. Just like many other players.

    2. Wings

      Arno, that is a good way of looking at it. Roddy is so competitive; it is not fair for him to sit on the bench.

      Reply
  21. waynesworldreview

    Quinn is looking for faster guys and we can find a more affordable option at #2WR…still, had to be a tough call…

    Reply
    1. Paddy O

      considering how many holes we already had – this was tantamount to creating a problem that did not exist. A serious bummer.

      Reply
      1. Hamad Meander

        Exactly – and if they didn’t care for Roddy, why wouldn’t they wait until after June 1st to avoid an extra $2,000,000 in dead money? It’s not like this team is in a luxurious position to waste cap space. Now we have an immediate need for a #2, and those don’t come cheaply or easily.

        Wouldn’t it be nice to have a veteran’s combine so that we could see how slow/fast a vet is? I would bet Roddy is still a 4.6 guy at worst.

        Reply
    2. Flo-Ri-Duh

      WWR – Some believe in “Belichicks Way”. He often releases aging still decent quality but highly paid players a little before their time in order to create cap space. Emotions don’t enter the equation – the player is just another # on the roster.

      Reply
  22. Chop Buster

    JB,
    “So the certified punk, in the next game called three passes in a row to Roddy just to show the fans that “I am running this team and will run it how I see fit and don’t give a rat’s azz what you think!”That, to me, is the sign of a vindictive, egotistical, s.o.b.”

    You hit the nail on the head with this statement concerning K.S. I believe most of us saw him this way…a brat who wanted to flex his muscle to us fans. I’m still waiting to see this offense that’s difficult to defend against; because most teams had no problem stopping it last year. The team did hurt themselves with a number of mistakes as well. I hope the young Shanacant changes his ways this year.

    Reply
  23. Arno

    JB– Your view is shared by many others: “So the certified punk, in the next game called three passes in a row to Roddy just to show the fans…” But Matt Ryan said, and I believe him, that the first two passes were scripted, and that the third was Ryan’s decision. You may draw the same conclusions, even with two passes in a row. But it’s inconceivable to me that Ryan would agree to humiliate either Roddy or the fans. That’s the last I’m going to talk about it. We’re just seeing things from different angles, brother.

    Reply
    1. Paddy O

      the big problem is the offense got worse and worse during the losing streak. and, you had a decent rushing attack.

      Reply
      1. Flo-Ri-Duh

        Paddy 0 – the bottom line: the offense got worse last year despite the run game improvement. Someone has to get blamed for it and RW got the boot. I’m more inclined to blame the interior OL for not giving MR a pocket to step up in or the time to look down field,

        Reply
        1. Paddy O

          which is just BAD leadership. the cause was shanahan. I suspect Quinn will be fired in 2 years. He does not make good TEAM decisions.

          Reply
    2. JB Falcon

      “We’re just seeing things from different angles, brother.” YES! and that’s what makes the cage such a great place. I’m really sorry that Dewey decided to take a break and hope it’s not permanent. Anyway, I don’t try to hide my feelings toward KS and, on the other hand, I appreciate and respect other cager opinions. I was all over Sham’s hiring at first, due to DQ’s endorsement but, to me, the proof is in the pudding. No one, yet, had came forward with a different opinion that can explain the horrible losing streak we went through. I know I always start out each season predicting 18-0 and 8-8 was not bad but I look at the individual players on this team and cannot find any other reason, or player, that could have been the fault of our pathetic results.
      So, I am, once again, excited about the upcoming FA period and the draft and looking forward to another year. There is so much information and speculation within the cage that simply must inspire any Falcon fan.
      I’ve posted more this evening than usual and think that cutting Roddy is what got me started but, it is what it is. Football! If it didn’t tick me off every now and then I’d probably lose interest.

      Reply
      1. Wings

        I hope we fans are not replaced, but it is another generation of players.

        Back to my old statement regarding KS: Big EGOS have little ears!!

        Reply
      2. Paddy O

        the keeping of Shan and letting White go – creating MORE roster holes – makes me think our entire FO – is now worse at making smart decisions since Mike Smith left. Imagine that Mike Smith was the smart guy on the leadership team?

        Reply
  24. John Waynesworld

    Roddy’s situation is a tough one. He had leverage with both the Titans and Bucs probably wanting his services, so he probably wasn’t being shy about trying to keep his money. From the Falcons side, I’m sure there are many layers but one is Roddy doesn’t fit with the new OC, who isn’t leaving. They also probably have a FA WR who is already waiting in the wings to sign. They wouldn’t hang themselves out to dry by having to draft another rookie WR to learn this system.

    Reply
    1. Paddy O

      if the “leadership” on this team thinks cutting White makes the offense better – they are the same morons who opted to throw to Hankerson, until he was cut. The more I think about this, the more I conclude that Quinn is in over his head.

      Reply
    2. Flo-Ri-Duh

      JWW – Yes this makes it much more likley they already have a UFA in mind but is the deal in place? This UFA WR market is not so great depth wise so it will really cost big to sign one of the top guys like Travis Benjamin. I can see them settle for Sanu and draft a guy next year. The over all quality depth of the WR’s on the roster needs upgrading. If JJ goes down what’s left?

      Reply
    3. Flo-Ri-Duh

      JWW – These other teams may want RW and I think he will sign with someone but doubt seriously they offer the kind of money Falcons were paying him.

      Reply
  25. Chop Buster

    Cutting Roddy White Was The Right Move
    By Mark Bradley,
    Posted: 6:18 p.m. Wednesday, March 2, 2016

    If you’re in the market for outrage, you should shop elsewhere. I think releasing Roddy White is the right move. It’s the first move the Falcons have made of late that I’ve actually liked

    I know, I know. He was a very good player for a very long time, the best receiver (pre-Julio) in franchise history. He played hard. He made tough catches. He was money on third down. He said amusing things. He was fun to be around. Alas, none of the above constitutes a reason to keep him. The salary-capped NFL can be a cold, hard place, but if you want to win you’d better be a cold, hard organization.

    If you want to grouse that the Falcons have no heart … well, go right ahead. But facts — those pesky things — might get in the way. Here’s this damning analysis from Bill Barnwell of ESPN: “No starting receiver drew fewer targets than White, who was thrown the ball on just 11.7 percent of the routes he ran in 2015. And the only wideouts in the league who averaged fewer yards after the catch than White were DeAndre Hopkins and Pierre Garcon.”

    We can gripe that dumb ol’ Kyle Shanahan didn’t get the ball to White, but think about that: You’re an offensive coordinator, which means you’re judged on making first downs and scoring touchdowns. If you thought White could further those endeavors, wouldn’t you make it a point of emphasis — going all Keyshawn on you — to get him the darn ball?

    Those who thought the White of 2015 was capable of being the White of 2010 were gazing through — going all “The Way We Were” now — misty water-colored memories. He was no longer that player. He was a 34-year-old wideout who couldn’t do much with the ball even if thrown the darn thing. He caught 43 passes last season, or 2.7 per game. He scored one touchdown.

    And if wasn’t as if Shanahan broke out the single-wing. Matt Ryan finished fifth in the NFL with 4,591 yards passing. Only 506 of those yards — 11 percent of the total — were gained by White. This from a man who, from 2007-12, had six consecutive seasons of 1,153 yards or better. And it wasn’t as if Ryan had spent his career looking off White: They’d been together since 2008. They’d done great things.

    If White wasn’t getting the ball, it was because he wasn’t getting open. If you’re a receiver who can’t get open, it’s time to seek alternate employment. Over the first five games, all of which the Falcons won, White caught a total of eight passes. He used to catch eight balls on a slow day.

    To say that Ryan only had eyes for Julio Jones is again to ignore the numbers. Tight end Jacob Tamme and running back Devonta Freeman caught more passes for more yards than White. Heck, Leonard Hankerson caught 18 passes over those first five games, and the Falcons liked him so much they cut him in midseason.

    On a January conference call, coach Dan Quinn seemed to suggest the Falcons would keep White. Said Quinn: “He’s one of the guys that I feel strongly (about) in terms of the competitor and the leader and the teammate (he is). … I love all the stuff that he stands for as a player.”

    Hearing this, I cringed. What a player represents makes little difference if he can’t, you know, play. In salary and a making-the-roster bonus, White was scheduled to earn $6.1 million in 2016. That’s a heap of money for a guy who scored one touchdown. That’s money — some of it, anyway — that can go a ways toward finding younger receivers.

    And there’s this: A big-name player who’s not playing/contributing invariably becomes a big-name distraction. That happened a bit over those first five games, when we media types lined up to ask White why he wasn’t catching passes. Imagine if he’d gotten benched. One thing the man has never been is reticent.

    To keep White just because he used to be a great player would have been to ignore the first rule of roster-building: Get the best players you can find. The Falcons can find better receivers than what White had become. Time was, he was among the very best in the business. That time, sad to say, was yesterday.

    http://www.myajc.com/news/sports/football/cutting-roddy-white-was-the-right-move/nqcML/

    Reply
    1. JB Falcon

      CB, I didn’t get a chance to read Bradley today. As always, a very good post so thanks for bringing it over. You can’t really deny or argue with Mark’s opinion since he usually sees the realistic side of things.

      Reply
      1. JB Falcon

        After re-reading Mark’s comment and on the other side, Roddy was thrown 11% of the total passes thrown and gained 11% of the total passing yards. I don’t know if that’s even worth mentioning. I’ll get over losing Roddy and it’s probably for the best but I still despise that little short haired monkey looking OC.

        Reply
        1. Chop Buster

          JB, that little short haired monkey (LOL) did piss a lot of people off this past season. I live in the metro DC area, so I’ve heard all the Redskins fans complaining about his ego and arrogance before. I was hoping it wasn’t true, but it appears they were right.

          Reply
          1. JB Falcon

            I don’t know about Mitchell and I love Calvin but the fact is we need to get younger. That goes for the Falcons too!

      1. Flo-Ri-Duh

        Paddy 0 – i can say amen to your opinon of the AJC. I used to live in Atlanta and the paper has gone from good back then to a fish wrapper today.

        Reply
    2. Paddy O

      this assumes that Shanahan is competent. That is an incorrect premise. Shanahan opted to throw to Hankerson – did he not drop passes in practice? The Falcons have so many holes in their roster, they thought they’d create some more? You can pencil in Ryan for more interceptions than TD’s if we keep trying to force the ball to Julio.

      Reply
        1. Paddy O

          cut Hawley – opted for 2 inept guys. Cut RW84 – option? WR was NOT a priority this off season – now it is. Just more “fixing” effort when there were already holes all over the team. LB – multi, DE, DT, S, OG – multi, C, RT. Hard to believe you are such a Pollyanna idiot you want to put more on your plate. Quinn is running backwards at this point.

          Reply
    3. Flo-Ri-Duh

      Sounds well reasoned but the question here is the scheme wrong? Not doubting RW, age 34, isn’t the Pro Bowler he used to be but is he that bad? The 2016 season should answer that question if he gets a chance to start some where. Maybe Falcons made a good move – maybe not. Time will tell.

      Reply
  26. medallion

    Random ramblings from an unhappy Cager that had lots of time to ponder things while driving a long time today. So, please forgive me if you find any of my opinions offensive. Any facts to disprove or affect my opinions are always most welcome and contrary opinions are at least o.k..
    (1) The release of Roddy White makes no football or cap sense to me. The cost of signing any UFA WR to replace Roddy with a player as good as Roddy (factoring in aging and so much more) will cost more than the cap space gained. I suspect there was an internal power dispute that Shanahan won
    (2) To me, Roddy’s cut is a continuation of the “thy shall not speak out loud about anything potentially negative” resulted in Hawley’s cut after he said he doubted he would be 100% for the year (saw him being cut as soon as I read he had said that if he could pass a physical), suspected Roddy next on list after he spoke out (and then also, dare I write it, might have followed that up by running one route against zone coverage intentionally badly or at least very disinterested), and then Shanahan confirmed it by at least two scripted plays to start a later game, with, if my memory serves me correctly, neither scripted play being useful for seeing how a defense ato play or useful for setting up later plays. Aren’t those the things that scripted plays to start a game are suppose to do?
    (3) Please no Bruce Irvin to the Falcons. There are certainly reasons that Seattle didn’t exercise its fifth year option on him to keep him at a fairly low cost on Seattle’s roster. Even if the cost of the exercise of a fifth year option was somehow deemed not wise with other salary cap issues by Seattle, I suggest also considering his 4 years under 3 different DCs in Seattle. Irvin was drafted when Jacksonville’s HC was then Seattle’s DC and, after trying him some as a small LEO in Carroll’s hybrid 4/3 3/4 defense, Irvin was moved to SSLB under that DC. Quinn kept Irvin at SSLB for the next two years when Quinn was DC in Seattle. Whoever was Seattle’s DC last year also kept Irvin at SSLB. We already have Brooks signed for SSLB spot, Worrilow (assuming resigned through tender process) as a potential replacement for Reed if Reed plays poorly, possibly Beasley since he’s
    so similar to Bruce Irvin (e.g., small LEO that has to be shifted to at least some LB position for lots of snaps), and possibly even Starr. Anyway, it’s like you have a car with one really bad tire, two that can make it for a while longer, one that looks maybe O.K., and a cheap spare. Hmmm – let’s see. How many vote for keeping the really bad tire and replacing some other tire?
    (4) I am on the Cage record as believing our number 1 FA priority has to be getting at least an average center through free agency. I haven’t changed that opinion. I am also on the Cage record as believing it would be a mistake to sign Mack (even though now the best FA center available after he opted out of Cleveland) because of the cost. I haven’t changed that opinion either. Mack is likely to cost more than 8 million per year and isn’t a spring chicken. So many better ways, IMO, to spend 8+ million instead of the option of spending it all on Mack.

    Reply
    1. Wings

      “thy shall not speak out loud about anything potentially negative”

      Exactly medallion! Roddy had no fear. Now, it is probably up to Matt Ryan to change a little and become the barometer for the team.

      Reply
    2. Paddy O

      that is my opinion. the Falcon FO/coaching staff has reduced the quality of MR2’s WR’s, and they think he’ll play better? NOW, you HAVE TO replace White. Stupid.

      Reply
    3. Arno

      You changed my mind about having to get Mack in particular… as long as we DO make C our #1 FA priority. Well done, med.

      Reply
    4. Hamad Meander

      Medallion – exactly – one would think getting a better guard/better center is better than getting a great center/ok guard. Spread the money out amongst the positions of need which are: C, RG, LG, WR2, MLB. This team really doesn’t have the luxury of spending $10,000,000 on one offensive lineperson. God forbid they go on IR – we’d be doomed.

      Reply
      1. Arno

        Yes– you made the same argument earlier, HM. Quinn talked yet again about Person and Gradkowski ‘competing’ for the role– something Matt Ryan just can’t afford for another year.

        Reply
  27. Paddy O

    cutting roddy is beyond stupid. the Falcons are mark sanchezing Ryan – removing quality, familiar WR for unknowns – it will NOT make Ryan more successful. We’ve seen his quality drop ever since Tony G left.

    Reply
    1. gman

      I kind of have to disagree PO. I realize that Matt is no Tom Brady but the Pats do this every year and still Brady makes it work within the system. Matt needs to step up and work with what he’s given. We already have one over priced receiver. The last few SB winners have won with much less.

      Reply
      1. Paddy O

        they have defense. It does not appear to me that Ryan is a Brady/Rodgers/Brees quality guy. Perhaps he follows the lead of his coaches too much – he needs more Favre in his approach – although he does not have the arm. It appears to me that it takes MR2 a while to get comfortable with his WR; also, the guy drawing up our scheme is NOT comparable to Belichick. otherwise, he would not try to consistently run JJ11 on underneath routes, thereby chronically compressing the field on his QB.

        Reply
  28. Grits Blitz

    Interesting to read in today’s paper, when asked, Quinn stated, “I do not feel he (Roddie White) was under-utilized” in 2015. HHHMMM…
    Coach Quinn, from the perspective of many fans, inc. myself, it appeared to us he was very much under-utilized in ’15. Hope he lands with any other team to prove to himself either he still has “it” (talent) or he has totally lost “it” as he deserves to know.
    Sidebar: If he does still have “it”, that should be another indictment of our present OC, Shamacant.

    As for Alex Mack, of course he would be a major upgrade if acquired.
    However, one may be prone to ask the question why in the world would he “want” to sign with Atlanta?
    Would it be solely for the $? QB stability with Ice (until/if or when he gets hurt)? A chance to mentor young linemen? A chance to make enough difference to help the club reverse their playoff drought? A chance to live in the area and be closer to family and friends? The weather?
    Maybe all the above.
    Then, again, would he more likely be heading for an already consistent winner with a viable chance for a S.B. victory?
    Would be shocked – in a very nice way – if this club did sign him, but I don’t like our odds at this point…our FO, notwithstanding.

    Reply
      1. Hamad Meander

        Also, no state income tax in Florida. Definitely an advantage when you are getting paid $384,615.38 gross every 2 weeks. There are a lot of nice places to live on the beach in Jacksonville – definitely an upgrade from CLEVELAND.

        Reply
        1. Grits Blitz

          HM – Very good point for his consideration. Also, Tenn. Titans would equally enter that equation.

          Reply
      1. medallion

        Flo: Would you explain your thinking further?
        DQ has stated words to this effect: He’s learning about offensive decisions and relying on others like Shanahan and Dimitroff for lots about offensive decisions.
        Based on words like that from Quinn, does it seem likely to you that he made the decision or finally went along with somebody else’s opinions as to what he/they wanted?
        Your supporting question of whether Dim would have cut Roddy on his own seems equally applicable to Quinn – would Quinn have cut Roddy on his own?

        Reply
    1. Paddy O

      Quinn is becoming either a corporate schill BS artist, or he is not really that sharp a HC. We now he has handed off the offense entirely to Shanahan, and obviously shanahan is NOT capable of stopping a season killing skid – nor do they appear to be able to properly coach/punish players for turnovers.

      Reply
  29. Flo-Ri-Duh

    Nice chart in a link above (forgot who linked it?) showing how many at each postion were drafted by Falcons th last 10 years. It didn’t show where they were drafted – 1st or 7th?. That said, it’s not how many you draft but how succssful they were that counts. On that the level the Falcons got a “D+” at best in my book for the last 10 years.

    Reply
  30. Arno

    I’m bringing forward Dewey’s post on FA tight ends. Losing Roddy puts more pressure on getting a good pass catcher at that position.
    __________________________________

    Dewey / February 17, 2016 at 7:49 pm

    Free Agency: Tight Ends
    Toilolo and Tamme are the only TE’s we have under contract that are worth mentioning. Toilolo is a real good blocker, not much use elsewhere. Tamme is a real good receiver, but not much use on the line. We need at least 1 TE that can do both well. This year’s FA class of TE’s seem to fall into 1 of 3 classes. Good receiver (which we have in Tamme), good blocker (which we have with Toilolo), or past their prime. If we were serious contenders for the Super Bowl and just 1 really good TE away from being complete, I would say go after Gates, Watson, etc. But since we are not in that position, it would be a waste of time and money to pursue one of them. I’d be fine bringing Moeaki back, especially if he’s finally healthy. What say you? Want to buy a TE? Here’s the list.

    Tight ends

    Dwayne Allen, Indianapolis Colts
    Garrett Celek, San Francisco 49ers
    Chase Coffman, Seattle Seahawks
    Kellen Davis, New York Jets
    Vernon Davis, Denver Broncos
    Dorin Dickerson, Tennessee Titans
    Rhett Ellison, Minnesota Vikings
    Daniel Fells, New York Giants
    Coby Fleener, Indianapolis Colts
    Antonio Gates, San Diego Chargers
    Richard Gordon, Baltimore Ravens
    Ladarius Green, San Diego Chargers
    James Hanna, Dallas Cowboys
    Clay Harbor, Jacksonville Jaguars
    Michael Hoomanawanui, New Orleans Saints
    Rob Housler, Chicago Bears
    Marcedes Lewis, Jacksonville Jaguars
    Anthony McCoy, Seattle Seahawks
    Zach Miller, Chicago Bears
    Tony Moeaki, Atlanta Falcons
    Bear Pascoe, Detroit Lions
    Logan Paulsen, Washington Redskins
    John Phillips, San Diego Chargers
    Allen Reisner, Baltimore Ravens
    Craig Stevens, Tennessee Titans
    Benjamin Watson, New Orleans Saints

    Reply
    1. SG

      Ben Watson had a career year last year, thanks in part to us. 74 receptions, 800+ yds, 6TDs. The UGA grad is however 35 but only missed one game in past 4 seasons.

      But if I had to pick right now it would be Ladarius Green. From NFL .com “Ladarius Green never really lived up to the hype in San Diego, but this former Making The Leap candidate will be 26 on opening day, and can block and beat linebackers down the seam. He also lacks typical wear and tear after playing in the considerable shadow of Antonio Gates for years. The fit is important here: If Green ends up in a good offense with a prolific passer, he has serious breakout potential.”

      Reply
  31. John Waynesworld

    Taking a look at our presently unknown WRs…

    Jordan Leslie…
    http://www.nfl.com/draft/2015/profiles/jordan-leslie?id=2553319

    C.J. Goodwin doesn’t have a NFL draft profile but from his nfldraftscout page he has similar height, speed and hops to Leslie, although Goodwin is 25 pounds lighter at 190 lbs:

    Goodwin: 6’3″ / 4.41 Forty / 40″ Vertical
    Leslie: 6’3″ / 4.41 Forty / 36″ Vertical

    Both were initially signed as UDFAs and released by NFL teams. The Falcons picked Leslie off of the Jags PS and put him on our PS, while Goodwin was waived by the Steelers prior to the Falcons signing him to the PS. Both were recently signed to future contracts this past January.

    Reply
  32. The Time is NOW

    From Dewey’s roster analysis of WR’s:

    “Roddy White-under contract through 2017 season, $6,137,500 cap charge

    Cut pre 6/1-$3,775,000 dead money, $2,362,500 cap savings

    Cut post 6/1-$1,887,500 dead money, $4,250,000 cap savings

    Trade-same as cut pre 6/1

    The old war horse just keeps on trotting along, though Roddy seems to be trotting at a much slower pace these days. Now 34 years old (oh to be young again), Roddy is definitely on the down slope of his career. Has lost a step, still troubled with the occasional drop, minor aches and pains that linger just a bit longer and slow him just a bit more, a contract that is paying him for his past performances rather than his current contributions (43 catches, 500 yards, 1 TD), and a coaching staff that at times seemed to be more concerned with NOT getting Roddy the ball than getting it to him. Plus recent reports that Roddy had trouble grasping the new playbook. Still, there was a lot positive to be said for Roddy in 2015. Roddy is still a team player. He blocked just as hard, if not harder, than he ever has. The only time Roddy complained about not getting the ball more was when he was asked a direct question about it from a reporter who was probably just digging for some dirt. And Roddy, true to his nature, spoke the truth, and that’s something I’ve always loved about Roddy. Roddy has always been brash without being arrogant. Maybe with a full year in this new system under his belt, we will get more production from Roddy. No one expects, 80 catches, 1200 yards and 10 TD’s anymore, but it would be nice if he could get back to 60, 800 and 5.”

    “My Conclusion: Obviously Julio isn’t going anywhere, though I’d still gauge interest throughout the league, but doubtful anyone would come up with something that would make the move worthwhile. Hardy obviously has a place in our team’s future, probably a strong #3 this year, maybe he could excel in the role Hankerson started the year with. Williams makes the team as a #4, with a shot at return duties as well. Goodwin, if eligible, has another year on the practice squad, as he is just too raw. Leslie Jordan makes the team as #5, learning all WR positions, unless a better option comes along through a cheap UFA or UDFA. With the many holes on our team’s line of scrimmages, we don’t need to waste a pick on WR, unless there’s a hidden gem available in the 7th round. This leaves our geriatric group (Roddy, Devin, Eric Weems). I’m afraid this is the end for Weems and Hester, as neither seem to be able to offer up the contributions they could just 2 short seasons ago, (resulting in just over $1,000,00 in dead money and just under $4,000,000 in cap savings). I would try to trade both first, though Hester’s contract and Weems diminishing returns probably makes it unlikely we get any takers, even for a 6th or 7th rounder. I’m really gonna miss Weems. Which leaves us with Roddy. This is a difficult one. I love Roddy, love everything he stands for, but you can’t ignore the recent drop in production along with the nagging injuries and the salary size per production. I’d love to keep him on at a reduced salary, but I’m not sure his pride would allow that (notice I didn’t say ego, Roddy knows what he is, very self-aware). I try to trade Roddy, but at his age, with his salary and recent injury history, I doubt we find any takers. He comes to camp, we work with him and let him continue to mentor the younger players, try one last time to trade him, then cut him post June 1st(causing another almost $2 million in dead money, but freeing another $4.2 million in cap savings). This leaves us without a true #2 WR. We saw this team can be productive without a true #2 in 2015, but we also saw how much better this offense functions when you have a #2(before Hankerson was injured). I would make a play for Rueben Randall of the Giants as an UFA, but I wouldn’t go over $6 million/year, which might not be enough to entice him or pry him away from the Giants. Otherwise, bring in another bargain like we did with Hankerson last season, and hope the others make huge strides.”

    Reply

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