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Break down of Falcon Draft Needs......First time Rookie post here!


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I have read these boards for the last couple of years with fun and decided to join in with the crew. As a long time Falcons\Steelers fan I wanted to look at what the needs are in this draft and what competition our Division foes give us in the upcoming years.........

My take on the weakness of the Falcons team of last year is:

[b]Offense:

Ryan needs a pass catching Tight End and a red zone threat, without one he will struggle this year as defenses will adjust to the Falcons scheme.

Right Offensive Tackle or Right Guard because our bread and butter is running the football, and while Dahl and Claybo played perfect last year we need to add some competition into these positions.

Defense

Our Weakness was stopping the inside rush and getting killed by Carolina up the middle, and with the Bucs adding a big time inside runner this will be a problem if not addressed in the draft!

We had trouble with getting burned by Tight ends all year and need to address this with a LB with great coverage skills and add depth to our LB core.

We also got burned by Big Wide Receivers, examples Muhammad with Carolina and Tampa Bays big Receiver. Foxworth helped cover some of these situations but is now gone........

Our Safety position needs a young Field General who loves to hit and has great coverage skills over the middle to not allow big plays.

We also need a young pass rusher to compliment John Abraham and to groom in which he could replace Jamal on the right side on passing downs this year.

Now to what players in this draft would help make these weaknesses strengths for the upcoming years?? I do know the FO with Mike Smith love smart, aggressive, and versatile football players. Here is my list below of players who should be considered................

Tight End:

Brandon Pettigrew- He will make this offense one of the best right away. Mularky would have versatility in play calling in the red zone and could use many formations...... Two tight end set and would help both the run and pass. First round Grade

Chase Coffman- smart player who can be used as a great weapon. Third round grade but will not be there with our third round pick

Shawn Nelson- Third Round grade with lots of upside but will not be there with our pick.

James Casey- Third round grade but will probaly not be around for our third pick.

Ryan Purvis- Worked with Ryan and would be a good fit for our system.

Our Pick has to be either taking Pettigrew with the First round pick or Purvis with the First Fifth Round pick!

Offense Guard:

Duke Robinson- Oklahoma would be a great pick but has a second round tag....

Offense Right Tackle-

Jason Watkins- Florida

Andrew Gardner- GT

Defensive Tackle-

Ron Brace- Boston College Second Round Grade

Fili Moala- USC Second Round Grade

Chris Baker- Hampton Third Round Grade

Sammie Lee Hill- Stilllman Third Round Grade

Vance Walker- GT Fourth to Fifth round pick

Roy Miller- Texas Fifth Round pick

Defensive End:

Aaron Maybin- Penn State First Round

Michael Johnson- GT First to early Second Round

Brandon Williams- Texas Tech 4-5 round

Michael Bennett- Texas A&M Fifth Round

Linebackers:

Clay Mathews- USC 1st Round

James Lauranitis- Ohio State 1 -2 round

Larry English- Nothern Illinois 1-2 Round

Connor Barwin- Cinc 1-2 round

Marcus Freeman- Ohio State 2 round

Cody Brown- UCONN- third Round

Nic Harris- Oklahoma - 4th Round

Kaluka Maiava- USC 4-5 Round

Cornerbacks:

Darius Butler- Uconn- 1st Round

Sean Smith- Utah 1-2 round

Mike Mickens- Cinci- 3-4 rounds

Sherrod Martin- Troy 3 round

Keenan Lewis- Oregon State 3 round

Cary Harris- Southern Cal- 5-6 Round

Safetys:

Louis Delmas- Western Michigan 1-2 Rounds

William Moore- Missouri 2nd Round

Chip Vaughn- Wake Forrest 2-3 Rounds

Rashad Johnson- Alabama 3rd Round

Chris Clemons- Clemson 5-6 Rounds

My take is that in the first two rounds you have to pick full time starters to make your squad. We do not need situational players in those first two rounds. If you notice my lists there is alot of talent in the 4-6 rounds that is why I think TD made the trade.............

We will take with the seven picks..............

Tight End

Offensive Lineman

Safety

Corner Back

Linebacker

Defensive Tackle

Either a Defensive End or WR late rounds who can return punts and depth.

I do believe we will trade down to late first or early second in this draft and pick up additional picks. My first round choices in Order.....

Clay Mathews- USC ( Tie)

Brandon Pettigrew Oklahoma State (Tie)

James Lauranitis- Ohio State

Sean Smith- Utah

No trade Mock Draft:

1) Brandon Pettigrew- Oklahoma State I struggled with this pick but based on completing the offense for Matt Ryan and knowing next year we will have to out score some opponents until the defense is ready in 2010.

2) William Moore- Missouri Provides the Falcons a consistant leader and sure tackler at the Safety Position. Plan B (Patrick Vaughn)

3) Sherrod Martin- Troy CB Has good size and speed and can provide the Falcons lots of options at Corner.

4) Kaluka Maiava- USC Linebacker Smallish in size but can cover and give the falcons versatility on passing downs and depth

5a) Roy Miller- DT Texas Size and bulk and very strong in the middle

5b) Michael Bennett- DE Very Athletic and can be used as a speed rusher on passing downs.

6) Andrew Gardner- GT OT gives us a great choice at Right Tackle and since Claybo can play Guard also it gives us options

If Clay Mathews is there at our pick you could substitute him with Pettigrew and Draft Ryan Purvis in the later rounds..........

Let me know what you think?

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Not a bad post except for the Muhammad burning us part. Foxworth didn't do anything against him the first time around because it was 5'6" Brent Grimes we had covering Muhammad and the Panthers took full advantage of that. Foxy wasn't a starter at that point.

And I'm just not sold on Pettigrew. Zero touchdowns in a terrible conference defensively.

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Here is how I see it, and I readily admit I’m no football GURU

Offense has 2 major concerns

1. OT Can Ojinnaka or R. Foster replace Weiner without a drop off in performance?

The only other current options are Sivtek or Butterworth or go into the Draft/FA for a replacement

NEED is MEDIUM here

2. TE what to do here? I’d like to pass since so many people have debated this at length BUT there are really only a few options.

A. Do nothing depend on Hartsock and Peelle with either Rader or Zinger as the # 3 TE

B. Draft a TE in an early round to become a starter ie (receiver , such as Pettigrew)

C. Draft a TE in a late round to compete with Rader and Zinger for the #3 slot.

NEED is MEDIUM/LOW here

3. C/G, QB, RB, FB, WR all look fine

The Defense

1. DT a replacement for Grady Jackson. (I never was a big fan of his)

Currently on the roster are T. Lewis, who gives up about 20#. Then the following all of whom give up about 40# J. Jefferson, T. Johnson, and T. Myles. (or possibly move K Moorehead) I’m not real happy about any of these. T. Lewis has looked good but will he perform at that same level now?

NEED is HIGH here.

2. SS a replacement for Milloy

A. Move either Coleman or DeCoud

B. Depend on one of Fudge, Harris, Brock, Pashcal

NEED is HIGH here

3. CB a replacement for Foxworth

There 9 total CBs on the current roster. If we say leave Houston where he is then

A look for a replacement from Hutchins, C Jackson, Grimes, or Irons

B look deeper at Sharpe, Tiller, Prude, or Vinnell

NEED is LOW here

4. DE to improve pass rush

I thought the draft of Biermann last year was to improve the pass rush and there is W. Evans whose background is as a pass rusher. I’m not big on drafting a DE this year.

They rotate at RDE with C. Davis on run downs and Abe for pass rush. Why not do the same at LDE with Anderson for run downs and Biermann or Evans for pass rush?

NEED is LOW here

5 LB Believe it or not --- I’m happy with the current LB corp.

Nicolas, Wire, and James can play either OLB slot

Lofton and Gilbert have the middle

Peterson can play at any slot

NEED is LOW/MEDIUM here

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Thanks all..................look forward to chatting with all about the Falcons. Actually my choice would be between Clay Mathews and Pettigrew based on Coach Smith saying this will be a need based draft from their stand point of the picks they are going to make and their schemes on defense..............

At the number #24 spot these positions would all be a reach for a player who normally would be picked at a later pick.

DE would be a reach because to be Michael Johnson from GT is a situational Pass rusher in his first couple of years........

DT I do love Ziggy Hood from Mizzoo but we have Babs tied up under contract and Trey Lewis is a similiar style of Player.

Ron Brace would be a big reach because he is a early to Mid Round second.

Linebacker Clay Mathews will be a great pick at the spot, but any other Linebacker would be a reach because either they are a specialties LB Pass rusher ( Example Larry English)

Corner Back............. I think Sean Smith of Utah would be a great pick but it would be a reach because he will be a early 2nd rounder.

I do not want another short corner ( Butler, Smith, Etc) who does not fit the style of defense

Safety- there are no safeties that are 1st rounders, and you can get great value in the second to third round....

So my picks are either Clay Mathews of USC or Brandon Pettigrew of Okla State or Trade back................ get value

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I really like what you have to say about the draft needs. I agree for the most part. The only thing I disagree with is that the 1st round pick has to be defense. I do like Brandon Pettigrew, but not as a 1st round pick. Its to risky in my opinion. We draft defense and trade for Kansas City TE Tony Gonzales, because he is unhappy in K.C. and hes much safer than Brandon Pettigrew and this allows us to take the best available linebacker in the 1st round then address needs at saftey and corner in the following rounds then in the later rounds get some OL help.

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