Atlanta's needs are very narrow

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Atlanta's needs are very narrow

Postby Pudge » Wed Apr 03, 2013 9:05 am

http://espn.go.com/blog/nfcsouth/post/_ ... ery-narrow

Atlanta's needs are very narrow
April, 1, 2013

8:33 AM ET
By Pat Yasinskas | ESPN.com

While it seems like just about every NFL team will be using what’s left of free agency and the NFL draft to address multiple needs, the Atlanta Falcons are in a very unique position.

At least on paper, they only have one hole on their roster.

That’s at cornerback, where the Falcons suddenly became thin with Saturday’s news that Brent Grimes left for Miami as a free agent. The departure of Grimes comes after the Falcons released Dunta Robinson at the start of free agency.

The good news is the Falcons have no other glaring needs after signing defensive end Osi Umenyiora to upgrade the pass rush, signing running back Steven Jackson to improve the running game and coaxing tight end Tony Gonzalez to put off retirement.

The bad news is there might not be a lot of great options at cornerback. Coach Mike Smith and defensive coordinator Mike Nolan frequently talk about how they like to have three cornerbacks that are capable of starting.

Atlanta still has Asante Samuel and Robert McClain, but they’re No. 2 and 3 guys and I don’t think the Falcons view Dominique Franks as anything more than a No. 4 cornerback. That means the Falcons have to add a cornerback, preferably someone that can be a No. 1 guy, in free agency or the draft.

It’s more than likely the Falcons will have to find a cornerback in the draft. The remaining cast of free-agent cornerbacks is highlighted by DeAngelo Hall, Quentin Jammer, Nnamdi Asomugha, Antoine Winfield and Sheldon Brown. Hall, who began his career in Atlanta, probably is off any list off possibilities for the Falcons. Atlanta hasn’t seemed to have shown much interest in the other veterans, but that could change now that Grimes is officially gone.

The Falcons also are limited by a tight salary-cap situation. But there’s no guarantee the Falcons will be able to get a top cornerback at No. 30. Alabama’s Dee Milliner widely is considered a top-10 pick and Washington’s Desmond Trufant and Florida State’s Xavier Rhodes are the only two corners consistently projected to go in the first round.

If Trufant or Rhodes lasts until No. 30, the Falcons can fill their one remaining need. But both could be gone before No. 30 and that might prompt general manager Thomas Dimitroff, who has shown a willingness to trade up in the draft and is holding 11 draft picks, to try to jump up higher.

I don’t know that Dimitroff will try to pull off a Julio Jones type of deal to get Milliner. But he might be wise to trade up into the late teens or early 20s to get Trufant or Rhodes.

Get one of those guys and everything on Dimitroff’s offseason list will be crossed off.
"Vincere scis, Hannibal, victoria uti nescis" -- Maharbal, 216 B.C.E.

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Re: Atlanta's needs are very narrow

Postby starley657 » Wed Apr 03, 2013 10:03 am

Are Millner, Trufant, or Rhodes someone you would trade up for? I like Millner and would like to trade up to get a good CB but we still need depth at other positions. Should we trade up in a Julio type deal or stand pat?

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Re: Atlanta's needs are very narrow

Postby Pudge » Wed Apr 03, 2013 10:14 am

I doubt the Falcons would trade up. I think the question is whether the Falcons see one of the other CBs as a 1st round player. Players like Blidi Wreh-Wilson, Jamar Taylor, Johnthan Banks, etc. If not, then the Falcons will wait to see who's there and take a CB at Pick No. 60. Similar to the 2009 draft, where there were 6 safeties taken in the 2nd round, the Falcons wound up with the 6th one in William Moore, and besides maybe Jairus Byrd, he's been the best of that group.
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Re: Atlanta's needs are very narrow

Postby dirtybirdnw » Wed Apr 03, 2013 11:27 am

I'm not a very big fan of drafting corners in the first round. Much like wide receivers they more often than not bust. I'm perfectly fine waiting for the 2nd & 3rd rounds to find a CB even if he needs to be a starter by day one.

I would like to think that Trufant falls to us though.
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Re: Atlanta's needs are very narrow

Postby The Mattural » Wed Apr 03, 2013 1:51 pm

dirtybirdnw wrote:I'm not a very big fan of drafting corners in the first round. Much like wide receivers they more often than not bust. I'm perfectly fine waiting for the 2nd & 3rd rounds to find a CB even if he needs to be a starter by day one.

I would like to think that Trufant falls to us though.


I dont mind CBs in the first round I dont believe in CBs in the top 5 unless they can put points on the board or can defend players like Calvin Johnson and Fitz one on one with no help. I mean Revis and Patrick Peterson didnt even go in the top 5. I really like Trufant I like his feet and hips and seems to always be in good position to make a play on the ball.
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Re: Atlanta's needs are very narrow

Postby samedi » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:01 pm

Someone mind updating me on the RG and LDE that ATL must have signed?

I guess that you could counter the LDE w/ Babs/Bier as LDE, but Reynolds is certainly not a starting RG.

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Re: Atlanta's needs are very narrow

Postby Pudge » Wed Apr 03, 2013 7:17 pm

dirtybirdnw wrote:I'm not a very big fan of drafting corners in the first round. Much like wide receivers they more often than not bust. I'm perfectly fine waiting for the 2nd & 3rd rounds to find a CB even if he needs to be a starter by day one.

I would like to think that Trufant falls to us though.

Actually corners taken in the latter half of Round 1 and Round 2 are one of the safest picks you can make on defense. Very few busts.
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Re: Atlanta's needs are very narrow

Postby Cyril » Wed Apr 03, 2013 11:55 pm

I'm kinda stunned like "samedi" our needs narrow? Sure we have players at every position, but not players worth starting.... Many of our positions are just hopes?

BTW who's going to stop the run up the middle this next year?
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Re: Atlanta's needs are very narrow

Postby John O » Wed Apr 10, 2013 5:52 pm

Cyril wrote:I'm kinda stunned like "samedi" our needs narrow? Sure we have players at every position, but not players worth starting.... Many of our positions are just hopes?

Especially on the OL!

BTW who's going to stop the run up the middle this next year?


And the defensive rush up the middle that we have not been able to stop for years. Look at the depth chart and tell me we are in trouble with all the cuts not filled with proven experience.
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