Who will the Atlanta Falcons take with their five picks in the NFL Draft?
The Falcons seemed to be having a resurgent season in 2015 when they started out 6-1 under new head coach Dan Quinn. Then the wheels fell off and they stumbled to an 8-8 record.
Despite only having two wins in their last nine games of the year, Atlanta still finished second in the NFC South. They also handed the Carolina Panthers their only loss of the regular season.
That’s just window-dressing, however, as they fact remains they are little by little wasting the prime years of Matt Ryan. He guided them to the #1 seed in the NFC in 2010 and 2012 but didn’t reach the Superbowl, now he’s 31 years old coming off three straight non-playoff seasons.
As the franchise tries to build on what they did manage to put together in 2015, here are the biggest areas of need for 2016:
- Outside and inside linebacker
- Interior offensive linemen
- Wide receiver or pass catching tight end
- Defensive end
- Strong safety
In free agency, the Falcons have addressed outside linebacker by picking up Courtney Upshaw from the Ravens. They also picked up veteran center Alex Mack from the Browns. Those moves will really help, but an inside linebacker and an offensive guard are still a position of need and belong at the top of the to-do list for GM Thomas Dimitroff.
Here’s how the draft picks will line up this year for the Falcons:
- Round 1, pick 17
- Round 2, pick 50
- Round 3, pick 81
- Round 4, pick 115
- Round 7, pick 238
With only five picks, and the fifth one being in the seventh round, Atlanta will have to spread their first four picks around the different positions of need in an effort to capitalize on what little they have to work with in the draft.
Next: 1st Round