While the Atlanta Falcons record and overall play may not be where many expected it to be entering the year, it does out the team in a very unique spot. The team has talent all over the roster but has unfortunately been destroyed by injuries and therefore leading them to have a down season.
However, there is a bright side to the Falcons struggles. That bright side you are wondering about comes in the form of a high pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. Currently, the Falcons hold the seventh overall pick. This could lead to the team taking a potential blue-chip player come draft time.
Atlanta Falcons 2019 NFL Draft: What to Expect
Team Draft Needs
As stated above, the Falcons are one of the rare teams whose roster suggests they shouldn’t be picking as high as they are. But because of injuries, this team stands.
The most notable position of need for the team is another interior defensive lineman. Outside of that, they could look for a new pass rusher, more offensive line depth, and another linebacker.
Potential Options Available
In the first round, the Falcons should look no farther than an interior defensive lineman. Based on current draft projections, both Quinnen Williams and Ed Oliver could be off the board by the time the Falcons pick seventh overall. While that is a bit of a disappointment, Mississippi State’s Jeffery Simmons is a very good consolation prize for the team.
Simmons is an absolute wrecking ball up front. He demonstrates elite hand usage and has a finite ability to walk back opponents, even without proper leverage. When rushing the passer he constantly has a plan of attack and a good change of direction. He could benefit from learning a better understanding of blocking schemes and demonstrating a better pad level.
Day Two Options
Day two of the NFL Draft contains the second and third round. This is where the team should look to fill rotational players or take the best player available.
In the second round, the Falcons should look to boost their pass rush. This could be done greatly with the addition of Chase Winovich (Michigan), Oshane Ximines (Old Dominion), or Zach Allen (Boston College). All three of these players are currently projected early to middle second round picks and would fit the Falcons defense.
In the third round, the team should look no farther than any of the top interior linemen available. Garrett Brumfield (LSU), Jake Hansen (Oregon), and Garrett Bradbury (N.C. State) would all provide this team will instantaneous depth along the offensive line and could form into quality starters with great coaching.
Day Three: The Final Storm
While day three of the draft is usually depth and roster players who may or may not make the final 53-man roster, you could find that “diamond in the rough.” This is the day where great scouting departments can demonstrate and do the most damage.
For those who do not know, day three of the NFL draft includes rounds four through seven. With these picks, the Falcons should look at players with great upside who are just raw at their respective positions.
While this may merely be an exercise to many it is also a semi-realistic possibility for the team. Quite often fans will get into draft mode after the season is over but for NFL teams it is a year-long process. It starts over the summer watching players and continues through the season. While fans may not be thinking of who their team should draft the teams certainly have already been thinking and looking at potential players to fit their schemes.