The Atlanta Falcons head into training camp two years removed from the Superbowl. New coaches, new players, and with this offseason, they’re hoping for new results from last years disappointing 7-9 finish. They get a B for their offseason moves. They Named Dirk Koetter offensive coordinator and Mike Mularkey the tight ends coach. They named Ben Kotwica the special team’s coordinator. The Falcons had a great draft and made some great signings lets dive deeper into their offseason moves.
The Falcons drafted two times in the first round of this year’s draft. Moving back in the first round at pick 31 trading the Rams a second and a third-round pick. The Falcons made a bold move in drafting Kaleb McGary an Offensive Tackle. The pick is not sexy by any means but it was definitely necessary. McGary is a big physical run blocker and he just looks for contact. He brings grit and toughness to the offensive line something the Falcons haven’t had in years. Matt Ryan was sacked over 40 times last season. They need Ryan up and healthy for all 16 games, and getting sacked over forty times you will get hurt soon.
With their first pick in the 2019 NFL draft, the Atlanta Falcons selected Chris Lindstrom with the fourteenth pick, an Offensive Gaurd out of Boston College. Lindstrom was All ACC first team last season. Chris was rated the number one offensive guard in the draft. The Falcons draft was a total success for what they got accomplished. They secured Matt Ryan’s right side for the next ten years. Chris and Kaleb will be day one starters, and the Falcons Offseason plan was to secure their offensive line and defensive line. They drafted two starters. That’s all you can ask for when you’re drafting.
The Falcons released longtime kicker Matt Bryant. Bryant has won a ton of games for the Atlanta Falcons so the move kinda caught a lot of Falcon fans off guard. The Falcons clearly believe in Giorgio Tavecchio who did a fantastic job in replacing Matt Bryant, he made all of his field goals in the three games he did start last season. Giorgio is cheaper and definitely younger so the Falcons rolled the dice with him over Bryant, but Bryant hasn’t been signed by anyone so if Giorgio gets off to a slow start Bryant could make a return to the Falcons.
The Falcons all so lost Tevin Coleman to the 49ner’s. Coleman was the leading rusher for the Falcons, but they ranked 27th in rushing last season. Devonte Freeman will be back to his pro bowl self this upcoming season, and with a new and improved right side of the line of scrimmage don’t be surprised if the Falcons rushing rank vastly improve from last season.
The Falcons also released longtime starting cornerback Robert Alford. This move had to happen, Alford hasn’t been the same since the Superbowl when he picked off Tom Brady and scored. Isaiah Oliver, the second year cornerback out of the University of Colorado had an up and down rookie season, but he did play better toward the end of the season. It took time for him to get more comfortable with the scheme and what the coaches wanted from him. Oliver will be definitely improved with just more reps and opportunities to make plays. The Falcons also released Brooks Reed. He was more known for his hair than his play on the field. So that was a good move by releasing him.
A lot of Atlanta Falcon fans wanted the Falcons to make a big splash this offseason on the defensive line. Thomas Dimitroff and Dan Quinn made little but huge moves this offseason in regard to the defensive line. They Agreed to terms with Defensive End Steven Means on a one-year contract extension. Placed the franchise tag on Defensive Tackle Grady Jarrett. Signed Defensive End Adrian Clayborn to a one-year contract. Signed Defensive Tackle Ra’Shede Hageman. Agreed to terms with Defensive Tackle Tyeler Davison on a one-year contract. These moves are huge because these players know the system, and they know how Dann Quinn wants to play so they can produce right away. Falcons defensive line will go under the radar this season, but they will be so much improved versus the run. The Falcons finished 25th versus the run last season look for that to improve this season.
The Atlanta Falcons made over 25 transactions this offseason. Some good some not so good. All in all the Atlanta Falcons had a great offseason, and now they shift their attention to minicamp and training camp this season should be interesting for sure.