Coming in as the 15th-ranked Falcon player is defensive tackle Corey Peters. You can click here to see the scoring system that was used to come up with these rankings.
Total Score: 63
Player Grade: 60 out of 100
Teams he could start for: 18 out of 32
Teams he is best position player: 5 out of 32
Teams he could find role on: 31 out of 32
Peak-Year Bonus: +3
Positional Bonus: +3
Corey Peters is in an interesting position this upcoming season. He enters the final year of his contract, and is in a position where his play in 2013 can secure his financial future for the rest of his life.
Having spoken with Peters personally, he sounds (and from what I’ve heard looks) like a man that is poised to step up his play this year. And step up his play he must. I’ve outlined in the past that Peters needs to play at a higher level than he has in the past.
When the Falcons drafted Peters in the third round of the 2010 draft, many considered it to be a reach since most draft “experts” had Peters graded a round or two lower than that. Peters has since lived up to his third round billing, but perception of him isn’t helped when a player like Geno Atkins, who was taken a round later, is now widely considered the league’s best defensive tackle. Will Peters ever be on the same plane as Atkins? No. But he won’t need to be. But he needs to be a more consistent disruptive presence than he has been in the past three years.
Peters is a capable run stopper, so much so that if the Falcons do eventually move towards a 3-4 scheme, he is a viable candidate to man the nose tackle spot. Along with his continued effort against the run, the hope will be that he takes that next step as a pass rusher. Peters isn’t blessed with the quickness of players like Atkins or Jonathan Babineaux, so he will have to rely more off how effective he is with his hands to beat blockers and get consistent pressure on quarterbacks. The capability is there, we just need to see it in 2013. If so, he has a chance to climb next year’s rankings of Falcons players. Then he could turn into a player that could start on not just half the NFL teams, but could potentially start on nearly all NFL teams.