The Atlanta Falcons struggled last year to keep guys like Aaron Donald and Flecher Cox from disrupting plays. Starting Brandon Fusco should help improve that area. The Falcons can also get back to running inside, and also this will give Matt Ryan a clean pocket to step up in. That’s super important, you have to give your quarterback time to survey the field. You have to give your wideouts time to get in their routes. Matt Ryan won’t have to worry about a 300-pound beast rushing right up the middle at him as much this season. In return, we will see Matt Ryan return to his MVP form. With one tweak to the offensive line that can really change everything.
Today the Atlanta Falcons just ended a long camp competition for the starting right guard position. Brandon Fusco beat out last years starter Wes Schweitzer. The Atlanta Falcons signed Brandon this offseason to a three-year deal. They wanted him to earn and prove that he was the guy. Fusco showed Chris Morgan the offensive line coach and Dan Quinn that he deserved to start the season.
Brandon Fusco is a 6’4 run blocking machine. Fusco played for the San Francisco 49ers last year. Coming out of Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania he was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings in 2011. Fusco started every game the year Adrian Peterson rushed for 2000 yards. He’s a great run blocker so Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman should see bigger running lanes on their interior runs. This will set up the Falcons outside run plays. Sweeps, zone stretch, and even screens will be more effective with Brandon Fusco in the starting lineup.
Fusco was ranked the 26th best offensive linemen in the National Football Leauge by Pro Football Focus last season. I know 26 is not a great ranking considering there are 32 starting guards in the league, but its a major upgrade from Wes Schweirtzer who was god awful. Wes was ranked the 39th best guard in the league. Starting Brandon Fusco will give the Atlanta Falcons more flexibility inside with Alex Mack. Brandon is great on his feet and very agile for a man of his size.
Offensive lines, and offensive lineman don’t get enough credit in the media for what they bring to a football team. They are the heart, the backbone, the spine, and muscle of a football team. They are the ones creating running lanes for running backs, and also providing protection to the quarterback. Having a great offensive line typically means your team will be very successful at running or passing the ball. Great offensive lines cannot only run block but also pass block just as good. We will have to wait and see if the Atlanta Falcons have just a good or great offensive line. The addition of Brandon Fusco should help push them to great.
Dan Quinn talks about the decision to name Brandon Fusco the starting right guard over Wes Schweitzer pic.twitter.com/vkz5DXpyg8
— Kelsey Conway (@FalconsKelsey) August 28, 2018