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2013 Mock Muncher – Final Update

April 25th, 2013 1 comment
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Desmond Trufant

The day has arrived, as tonight commences the 2013 NFL Draft! This is the final update for all the mock drafts I’ve collected and collated this off-season to see what the so-called experts project the Atlanta Falcons to do in this year’s draft. In total, 217 mocks were munched, over half of which came in the month of April (120). For most of the off-season, most were projecting the Falcons to focus on the tight end position. Desmond Trufant made a late run to surpass Tyler Eifert as the top pick projected to the Falcons. Mainly because Trufant was the projection for over a dozen sites’ final mock drafts.  As we got further along in the off-season, cornerback and defensive end became the predominant projection for the Falcons. With this final update, there includes a number of mocks that project the Falcons to trade up in the draft as those rumors have picked up steam over the past week or so. After Eifert and Trufant, Jamar Taylor and Zach Ertz were the most popular projections. Here are the final tallies for the off-season. Scroll down to the bottom to see the tallies for the month of April.

Total Mocks (217 total, 177 unique):
1. Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington (37 total, 28 unique)
2. Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame (35 total, 26 unique)
3. Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State (22 total, 18 unique)
4. Zach Ertz, TE, Stanford (20 total, 16 unique)
5. Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State (12 total, 9 unique)
6. Damontre Moore, DE, Texas A&M (10 total, 6 unique)
7. D.J. Hayden, CB, Houston (8 total, 7 unique)
7. Tank Carradine, DE, Florida State (8 total, 7 unique)
9. Johnthan Banks, CB, Mississippi State (7 total, 7 unique)
10. Alex Okafor, DE, Texas (7 total, 5 unique)

4.25 - ESPN Insider (Mel Kiper): Robert Alford, CB, SE Louisiana
4.25 - ESPN Insider (Todd McShay): Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.25 - Walter Football: Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.25 - Walter Football (Charlie Campbell): D.J. Hayden, CB, Houston
4.25 - Football’s Future: Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State
4.25 - Draft Countdown: Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.25 - Draft Tek: Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.25 - Ourlads: Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.25 – Rotoworld (Josh Norris): Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri
4.25 – Rotoworld (Evan Silva): Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama
4.25 – CBS Sports (Rob Rang): Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.25 - CBS Sports (Dane Brugler): Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State
4.25 - CBS Sports (Pete Prisco): Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State
4.25 – National Football Post: Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State
4.24 – SI.com (Peter King): Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.24 – NFL.com (Mike Mayock): Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.24 - NFL.com (Bucky Brooks): Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State
4.24 – Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.24 – CBS Sports (Clark Judge): Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State
4.24 – CBS Sports (Pat Kirwan): Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.24 – CBS Sports (Jason La Canfora): Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.24 – Pro Football Talk: Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State
4.24 – FOX Sports: Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame
4.24 – USA Today (Nate Davis): Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.24 – Great Blue North Report: Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State
4.24 - Draft Daddy: D.J. Hayden, CB, Houston
4.24 - NFL Draft Blitz: Damontre Moore, DE, Texas A&M
4.24 - Draft King: Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame
4.24 – Draft Breakdown (Spencer & Engle): Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.24 – Draft Breakdown (Andrew Parsons): Barkevious Mingo, DE, LSU
4.24 – The Football Expert: Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State
4.24 – NFL Draft Geek: D.J. Hayden, CB, Houston
4.24 – NFL’s Future: Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.24 - Draft Season (Onebar): Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State
4.24 - FF Toolbox (Ben Standig): Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.24 - FF Toolbox (Matt De Lima): Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State
4.24 - FF Toolbox (Ricky Dimon): Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State
4.24 – FF Toolbox (Forrest N. Long): D.J. Hayden, CB, Houston
4.24 - FF Toolbox (Rob Warner): Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame
4.23 – NFL.com (Gil Brandt): Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.23 - Draft Season (Lomas): Datone Jones, DE, UCLA
4.22 – CBS Sports (Will Brinson): Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama
4.22 – Ourlads (Chris Steuber): Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
4.22 – Draft Season (Lupagus): Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame

Read more…

Categories: Draft Central Tags: ,

Falcons waive Meier

April 22nd, 2013 Comments off

The Falcons announced that wide receiver Kerry Meier was waived today. Meier spent this past season on injured reserve with an undisclosed leg injury. It was the second time Meier spent time on the injured reserve, after suffering a torn ACL in his first training camp in 2010. Meier was a fifth round pick by the Falcons that same year out of Kansas.

Meier began his college career as a quarterback before moving to wide receiver. He finished his career at Kansas as a highly productive wideout in their spread attack, breaking their single season record for receptions with 102 as a senior. Meier’s only action with the Falcons came in 12 games in 2011 where he played predominantly on special teams, without recording a tackle.

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Takeaways from Last Week – April 22

April 22nd, 2013 Comments off

Scott Olmos-US PRESSWIRE

Dion Jordan

Last week, I promised that I would go over the Falcons Day 3 draft plans. But of course news and rumors picked up steam that the Falcons were planning on moving up via trade in the draft. I do think the two issues are somewhat related, which I will delve into later. But for now, let’s talk about the Falcons potential third day draft possibilities.

The meat of the Falcons draft lies on the third day of the draft, where rounds four through seven will be selected. The Falcons hold eight of their eleven total picks during this stretch of the draft. The third day of the draft is typically where teams try to build their depth. A few players will emerge as starters, but they are few and far between.

Using previously discussed draft grades, only 14 of the 153 players selected in the final four rounds in 2008 earned C grades or higher (i.e. became solid starters after five seasons). That number is 22 out of 156 players from the 2007 class. In 2008, five of those 14 starters were fourth rounders, while that number was 12 in 2007.

Because the Falcons draft for need, they are going to lean towards targeting players that have a high probability of making the roster. Basically operating under a simple principle that there’s no way you can help the team if you don’t make it. So to determine what areas and positions the Falcons might target on the third day of the draft, you have to take a closer look at the team’s current roster. Here’s a quick breakdown position by position, with the number in parentheses indicating the current number of players at the position that have a strong probability of making the final roster:
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Falcons check out Carradine

April 20th, 2013 Comments off

Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

Tank Carradine

Joe Reedy of the Cincinnati Enquirer tweeted earlier that the Falcons were among 11 teams represented at the private workout of Florida State defensive end Tank Carradine today. Reedy reports that Carradine ran a 4.75-second 40 time. Carradine suffered a torn ACL in November after a breakout senior campaign where he recorded 11 sacks, 80 tackles, and 13 tackles for loss.

Carradine met with the Falcons for a private workout on April 2 according to reports. Carradine, who’s first name is actually Cornellius, transferred to Florida State after two seasons at Butler Community College. His career at Butler came on the heels of current Falcon defensive end Jonathan Massaquoi, who spent two years at the Kansas-based community college (2007-08) before transferring to Troy in 2009. In his first season at Butler in 2009, Carradine recorded 90 tackles, 20 tackles for loss, and 10 sacks. He would earn All-American honors as a sophomore with 119 tackles, 29 for loss, 16 sacks, 3 forced fumbles, and 5 recoveries. His sack total led the nation among junior college players. He transferred to Florida State the following season where he served as a backup to Bjoern Werner and Brandon Jenkins. He had 38 tackles, 8 for loss, and 5.5 sacks. When Jenkins went down with a foot injury before the start of this most recent season, Carradine stepped into his spot at right defensive end. Carradine went down with his injury in the team’s final regular season game against the Florida Gators on November 24.

Recent reports suggest that Carradine is ahead of schedule on his rehab and is widely considered to be one of this draft’s premier pass rushers if not for the untimely event of his injury could have been a Top 15 pick. Carradine measured at 6-4, 273 pounds at today’s workout.

Categories: News Tags: , , ,

Moore arrested on battery charges

April 18th, 2013 Comments off

Atlanta’s FOX 5 News reports that Falcons safety William Moore was arrested Thursday in Fulton County on simple battery charges. Details of his arrest have yet to be disclosed. The Falcons issued a brief statement indicated their awareness of the situation and no further comment due to the legal nature of the matter.

Moore signed a brand new five-year deal worth nearly $30 million with the Falcons as a free agent in March. Moore is coming off his first Pro Bowl season, serving as an injury replacement for the NFC squad. Moore is coming off a season where he had a career-high 75 tackles, along with 4 interceptions, 2 forced fumbles, and a sack.

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Falcons open season in New Orleans

April 18th, 2013 Comments off

The league announced the 2013 regular season schedule tonight. The Falcons will open their season on the road against division rival New Orleans Saints on September 8, the first Sunday in the season. The following week the Falcons will get their home opener against the St. Louis Rams on September 15. The schedule features five primetime matchups (tied for most in the league), beginning with a home game in Week 4 against the New England Patriots on NBC’s Sunday Night Football. They will then follow that up with a Monday Night Football matchup on ESPN the ensuing week with another home game against the New York Jets on October 7. The Falcons bye week will be the following week.

After the Saints, the Falcons next NFC South divisional opponent follows their bye week with a home game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. After that the Falcons begin an eight game series that will have the team at home for only three games. The Falcons next primetime game will come in Week 12 on October 21 at home on their Thursday Night game on NFL Network. The Falcons will go on the road to Lambeau Field to face the Green Bay Packers in Week 14 on December 8 on Sunday Night Football once more. The final primetime game will be against the team that ended the Falcons 2012 season in the NFC Championship. That game against the San Francisco 49ers will come in Week 16, December 23 on ESPN’s Monday Night Football. The Falcons will close out the regular season with a home game against the Carolina Panthers on December 29.

Five of the Falcons six divisional games will follow their Week 6 bye week. Four of the team’s first six games will be played at home in the Georgia Dome. The Falcons schedule also features two significant breaks. The first of which follows their Monday Night game against the Jets, due to the bye week, the Falcons next game won’t come until 13 days later. Following their Week 12 Thursday Nighter against the Saints, they will have the typical nine-day layoff until they go on the road against the Buffalo Bills. That game will be played in the Rogers Centre in Toronto, Canada.

Click here to see the rest of the Falcons 2013 schedule.

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2013 Schedule

April 18th, 2013 Comments off

2013 Atlanta Falcons Schedule

Preseason
Week Date Opponent Time Result Score Stats
1 Aug. 8 Cincinnati 8:00 L 10-34 Stats | Recap | Review
2 Aug. 15 at Baltimore 7:30 L 23-27 Stats | Recap | Review
3 Aug. 24 at Tennessee 8:00 L 16-27 Stats | Recap | Review
4 Aug. 29 Jacksonville 7:30 L 16-20 Stats | Recap | Review
Regular Season
Week Date Opponent Time Result Score Stats
1 Sep. 8 at New Orleans 1:00 L 17-23 Stats | Recap | Review
2 Sep. 15 St. Louis 1:00 W 31-24 Stats | Recap | Review
3 Sep. 22 at Miami 4:05 L 23-27 Stats | Recap | Review
4 Sep. 29 New England 8:30 L 23-30 Stats | Recap | Review
5 Oct. 7 N.Y. Jets 8:40 L 28-30 Stats | Recap | Review
6 Oct. 13 bye
7 Oct. 20 Tampa Bay 1:00 W 31-23 Stats | Recap | Review
8 Oct. 27 at Arizona 4:25 L 13-27 Stats | Recap | Review
9 Nov. 3 at Carolina 1:00 L 10-34 Stats | Recap | Review
10 Nov. 10 Seattle 1:00 L 10-33 Stats | Recap | Review
11 Nov. 17 at Tampa Bay 1:00 L 28-41 Stats | Recap | Review
12 Nov. 21 New Orleans 8:20 L 13-17 Stats | Recap | Review
13 Dec. 1 at Buffalo 4:05 W 34-31(OT) Stats | Recap | Review
14 Dec. 8 at Green Bay 1:00 L 21-22 Stats | Recap | Review
15 Dec. 15 Washington 1:00 W 27-26 Stats | Recap | Review
16 Dec. 23 at San Francisco 8:40 L 24-34 Stats | Recap | Review
17 Dec. 29 Carolina 1:00 L 20-21 Stats | Recap | Review

Stats are provided by NFL.com‘s Gamebooks, which are in PDF format. You can find a PDF reader here.

Click here to see the results of the Falcons 2012 Season.

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Rumors swirl of potential Falcons trade up

April 18th, 2013 1 comment

The Falcons are picking thirtieth in the 2013 draft, and rumors continue to gain momentum that the team is looking to move up and get an earlier pick. D. Orlando Ledbetter of the AJC recently discussed the possibility of the Falcons moving up in the first round based off a year-old study of Falcons drafts under GM Thomas Dimitroff. Yesterday, SI.com’s Peter King and then today, CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora, cite sources that suggest the Falcons desires to trade up are real.

The Falcons last went through a blockbuster trade-up in the first round in 2011, where they moved up 21 spots to select wide receiver Julio Jones. The team sent their first round pick (27th overall), second and fourth round picks in the 2011 draft along with first and fourth round picks in the 2012 draft to Cleveland in exchange for the sixth overall selection. In 2012, the Falcons did not trade up in the draft, however they did move back seven spots in the third round via a trade with Baltimore.

La Canfora reports that the Falcons are eyeing either Oregon defensive end Dion Jordan or Alabama cornerback Dee Milliner, according to his sources. Both have been projected to be potential Top 5 picks in the majority of mock drafts.

Today during an hour-long press conference, Dimitroff indicated that the team was open to maneuvering in the draft, whether that mean moving up or down.

Categories: News Tags: , , ,

Takeaways from Last Week – April 15

April 15th, 2013 3 comments
Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Is DeCoud in danger?

It’s now less than two weeks until the 2013 NFL Draft kicks off on Thursday night, April 25. In past years I would have for the top prospects in the draft. I have not done that this year. My job had me traveling a lot in the fall, so I didn’t watch as much college football as normal. Once the winter hit, and now that we’ve rolled into spring, I have a lesser workload but not by a huge margin. And since I typically do a poor job managing my time anyway, I did not get to make up for lost time as much as I would have liked.

So this year, there aren’t going to be many scouting reports on draft prospects. At least not before the draft. After the draft, I intend fully to dive into breaking down the players that the Falcons draft. Although again, because my workload is likely to be hectic that might take a month or so especially if the Falcons wind up making eleven picks.

But I do hope that in the next ten days that I will put a few scouting reports online of some of the players that the Falcons are potentially targeting in the early rounds of the draft. I really want to look at some cornerbacks as well as some pass rushers because I feel that these are the most likely players the Falcons will come away with in Round One.

We have five years of drafts under Thomas Dimitroff to gauge in order to try and guess who the Falcons are taking with their top pick this year. Frankly, that’s all it really is: educated guessing, because none of the many bloggers around the interweb that cover the Falcons really know what is going to happen.

To be honest, I’m not very good with guessing who the Falcons will take with their top pick. In 2008, I was split on Glenn Dorsey and Matt Ryan. That was understandable to a degree because it was Dimitroff and Mike Smith’s first draft, and their tendencies were unknown. In hindsight, it’s obvious why they ultimately chose Ryan but at the time it seemed like a toss-up. Mike Smith was a defensive coach, and Dorsey was widely hailed as the best interior pass rusher since Warren Sapp. And many weren’t high on Ryan. I can proudly thump my chest, and say I wasn’t one of them. I wrote this about Ryan in that 2008 draft guide:
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Falcons to host local pro day on Wednesday

April 9th, 2013 3 comments
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Auburn TE Philip Lutzenkirchen

Updating a previous report, the Falcons will hold their pro day for local prospects tomorrow, Wednesday, April 10. D. Orlando Ledbetter of the AJC mentions several prospects that are confirmed to be working out for the team. Among them are defensive tackle T.J. Barnes (Georgia Tech), cornerbacks A.J. Bouye (Central Florida) and Branden Smith (Georgia), running backs David Carter (Morehouse) and Kenny Miles (South Carolina), offensive linemen Edmund Kugbila (Valdosta State) and Jamaal Johnson-Webb (Alabama A&M), and tight end Philip Lutzenkirchen (Auburn).

Most of the confirmed prospects and any others aren’t likely to be high picks. Among the confirmed players, Barnes figures to be the most likely to be taken in the draft. CBS Sports projects him as a fifth round pick and he is their 15th-ranked defensive tackle. The massive nose tackle (6-6, 369) did not start until his final season at Georgia Tech, where he posted career highs with 28 tackles, 5 for loss, 1.5 sacks, and 3 passes broken up.

Smith might also be in the mix for a late round pick, as he is the 37th ranked cornerback on CBS Sports. He impressed at Georgia’s pro day, clocking a 4.38 40 time. He started 25 games over the past three seasons, tallying 4 interceptions and 17 pass breakups in that span. He was arrested for possession of marijuana last spring. He was invited to the East-West Shrine game this past January, where he managed an interception, but also was beat for a touchdown.

Bouye is coming off his best season at Central Florida, recording 53 tackles, 3 interceptions and 11 pass breakups. He has a nice combination of size (6-0/186) and athleticism, clocking a 4.55-second 40 time and having 36.5-inch vertical jump at his pro day. He is the 66th ranked cornerback prospect by CBS Sports.

Carter likely will move to fullback given his size (5-9/229) and his slower speed (5.03 second 40 time). He earned conference player of the year as a junior after rushing for 1,495 yards and 19 touchdowns. A hamstring injury limited him as a senior, and his production fell to 841 yards and 13 touchdowns.

Miles led the Gamecocks in rushing as a redshirt freshman with 626 yards and a touchdown. He would serve as the backup the past three years behind Marcus Lattimore, but log 8 starts due to injury. As a senior with six of those starts, he finished the year with 104 carries for 359 yards (3.5 avg) and 2 touchdowns. He also caught 52 career passes. A smaller back at 5-8, 192 pounds, he clocked a 4.50 second 40 time at his pro day. He is the 40th ranked RB prospect at CBS Sports.

Kugbila was invited to February’s Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, where the 6-4, 317-pound guard ran a 5.31 second 40 time, bench pressed 225 pounds 23 times, and had a 22.5-inch vertical jump. He would improve on those numbers (5.13/24/26.5) at his pro day. He’s started the past two seasons at guard after beginning his career at tackle. The Ghanan native is the 26th ranked guard by CBS Sports.

Johnson-Webb was another Combine invitee where he measured in at 6-5, 313 pounds with nearly 36-inch arms. He began his career as a guard before moving to left tackle. At the Combine, he ran a 5.37 second 40 time, did 17 bench reps, and had a 23-inch vertical jump. He is graded as a guard by CBS Sports, where he is ranked 22nd on their list.

Lutzenkirchen entered the season fairly highly regarded as he was CBS Sports’ 8th ranked TE in their preseason rankings. But a hip injury sidelined him in October. In six games, he caught 15 passes for 139 yards (9.3 avg) and no touchdowns. That after two seasons where he was a valuable asset in the redzone, combining for 12 touchdowns on only 39 catches. His 14 career touchdown passes is currently the school record for tight ends. He was able to participate at the Combine, running a 4.94 40 time with 21 bench reps, 30.5-inch vertical. He doubled at times as a lead blocker and fullback showing his versatility. He is currently ranked 24th by CBS Sports among tight ends.

Categories: Draft Central Tags: , , ,