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stone cut!


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he was just frickin promoted to 2nd string SS. Stone over Antoine Harris a million out of a million times

Obviously our qualified coaching staff and scouting department that just spent the last 3 months evaluating the guy every day agree with you...

Oh wait, nvm.

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I'm sure this is aurthur blanks doing, he's trying to shore up public image and the DUI did Stone in. Aurthur Blank has the worst instincts of any owner about when and when not to lay down the hammer. What a mistake.

The gullibility and shear stupidity of some of our so called fans baffles me. If you think Arthur Blank currently has, or ever has had, ANY influence over personnel decisions such as who stays and who goes when it comes time to make football related decisions, you make Forrest Gump look like a genius. I can't take anyone seriously that would think Blank could go to men such as Thomas Dimitroff and Mike Smith, tell them, "hey, Stone got a dui, I don't like that, you need to cut him," and they would actually respond with a sir, yes sir.

Absolutely freaking ridiculous.

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I was surprised to see Stone cut, but Harris has performed well and is probably viewed as the more needed ST guy.

I think what it probably boils down to is several factors:

1) Versatility, this staff wants it in as many players as possible, just like the NE staff. Harris and DeCoud both have it, Stone doesn't. He's strictly a SS and special teams guy. Decoud can swing to both safety spots, and Harris can play anywhere in the secondary as well as both are solid on ST's.

2) The unknown about how good Stone really is. Sure, he has raw physical talent. A lot of former players currently on the street had talent too. We can speculate all we want, but nobody knows better than our current coaches the answer to questions like:

Is Stone dedicated? Did he show the mental aptitude to learn and execute this staffs defense and gameplans? Does he have the team first attitude this staff has made a priority? Is he a good teammate?

Basically, does the staff feel like he is the kind of player they want to develop and do they think he has the right tools to develop the way they want him too? Apparently the answer was no. What they saw led them to believe that the versatility and other factors they saw from players like Harris and Decoud made them more valuable to THIS team than what Stone did. That's not to say Stone might not get picked up by someone else and give them some solid play. What it means is that he didn't meet the criteria that THIS staff was looking for for this team more than the players we ended up keeping.

We also have to keep in mind that the low roster limit does influence these types of decisions. I would imagine if we were able to keep a few more players than 53, then Stone might still be around. However, that's all speculation on my part because as far as I know Stone could have been very far from being the type of player this staff was looking to keep and develop. Again, they are the one's that know best what they are looking for. So perhaps before we jump up on our armchair GM soapboxes, we should put a little faith in our coaching staff and scouting department for a change. I know as long suffering Falcons fans, that can be hard to do sometimes.

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Well, from my vantage point, Stone was guilty of missed assignments on defense. Sure, he had a few good pops, but none of those were tackles. He kept head hunting and would never wrap the player up. This works in preseason against 2nd and 3rd stringers, but this would have been disasterous in regular season. All those "pops" did was get the crowd a bit more fired up. Again, against starters, they simply bounce off and get extra yards.

As for Harris, Smitty time and time again talked about the importance of having players that can swing both ways in the secondary. That means they need to be able to play safety and corner. Harris has proven he can do this last year while Stone kept on missing assignments on defense. Now, I think Stone is a physical freak and I hope he lands on our PS. With a bit more refinement, he might develop into a heck of a player. But he still needs work and it is not worth having him do this on our 53 man roster. Stome's ability as a gunner (the area he was awesome at) will be taken by Jennings (who is no slouch at gunner) and Irons (who Smitty referred to as the "best special teams player on our team").

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