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Falcons Best Draft Steal In Our History


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The Best Draft Steal in the History of Every NFL Franchise

By

Dan Van Wie(Featured Columnist) on March 7, 2012

Atlanta Falcons — Jamaal Anderson

The Atlanta Falcons have drafted some great players over the history of the franchise. The top three draft picks in Falcons history that leap to mind off the bat are quarterback Brett Favre (No. 33 pick in 1991 draft), running back Jamal Anderson, (No. 201 pick in 1994 draft), and corner Deion Sanders, who lasted until the No. 5 overall pick in the 1989 draft.

We all know that Sanders is one of the greatest corners to have ever played in the NFL. His election to the Hall of Fame signifies that. But since he was one of the top five draft picks in 1989, that really doesn't qualify as a draft day steal in the spirit of this presentation.

While Favre awaits the proper number of years to stay retired before he can be enshrined in the NFL Hall of Fame, he never really played for the Falcons. Although you can say he was technically the greatest draft day steal in Falcons history (and you would have an argument there), I am electing to go in a different direction.

Instead, we will go with Jamal Anderson, who lasted in the 1994 draft until overall pick No. 201 in the seventh round. Now, that is what I call a draft day steal.

Anderson was a star running back for the Falcons from 1994-2001. During his career, Anderson gained 5,336 rushing yards, 1,645 receiving yards and 41 career touchdowns. In 2001, Anderson suffered a torn ACL, and that ended his career.

Anderson was a workhorse for the Falcons. He carried the ball 410 times in 1998 and gained 1,846 yards while scoring 14 touchdowns. Anderson led the Falcons to their first Super Bowl appearance in 1998, but they lost that game to the Denver Broncos, who were led by John Elway and Terrell Davis.

Anderson is also remembered for his touchdown dances, when he would do the "Dirty Bird". Anderson was elected to the Pro Bowl team in 1998.

This was his pick for us and I like it. who's yours?

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agreed Jamal Anderson was a stud - its a shame that almost every great running back the Falcons have had has had their career cut short - Jamal & William Andrews.

Loved watching Jam play.

Ditto...and IMO...really a shame for Andrews as I consider him one of the best NFL rb's I have ever seen play the game. Had the size of Earl Cambell with homerun breakaway speed.

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McClure got snubbed. He was never at the level Jam was, but Jam really only had 1 great season. Look it up, broke 10 TD's once, broke 1200+ yards once. McClure was a 7th rounder that started for over 10 straight seasons, through several coaching changes, and was the leader for a line that broke a lot of franchise records.

I don't think McClure was ever an elite Center, but I'll take a 10 year starter over one great season any day.

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Jeff Van Note ....

Drafted in the 11th round of the 1969 NFL draft.

Played for the Falcons for 18 years played in 246 games with 225 starts, which is 2nd only to Mike Kenn. Played in 5 Pro Bowls. Only missed 4 games over his career.

In the Falcons Ring of Honor, still llives in Atlanta, and working on Falcons broadcasts.

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As usual, a reporter with no clue about the Falcons simply gets it wrong. As another poster mentioned, Jeff Van Note was way more important than Anderson was plus Note was drafted way later as well.

Another name that should be considered is Travis Hall. Late round pick developed into a pocket crushing run stopping All Pro DT. He contributed heavily to our Super Bowl team.

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Ditto...and IMO...really a shame for Andrews as I consider him one of the best NFL rb's I have ever seen play the game. Had the size of Earl Cambell with homerun breakaway speed.

Actually Campbell was around 235 plus, Andrews was about 210. Pittsburgh MLB Jack Lambert once said that other than Earl, Andrews was a harder hitter than anyone he played against.

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my favorite 2nd favorite all time falcons play was JA32, crushing three defenders back,to back, to back on his way to a touch down, stiffed armed one off to the side, stiffed one straight into the ground like a crushed beer can, then ran right over the third. best running play EVER.

but i'd have to go with JVN at center as the best draft steal though.

by the way my all time favorite was scott case killing a punter in the back of the endzone for a safety, all the idiot had to was back up one step to save himself from a hit, but no he just stood there, and scott UNLOADED on him, almost started a brawl,other team wanted refs to throw a flag, man it was great :) scott just smiled and walked off the field.

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As usual, a reporter with no clue about the Falcons simply gets it wrong. As another poster mentioned, Jeff Van Note was way more important than Anderson was plus Note was drafted way later as well.

Another name that should be considered is Travis Hall. Late round pick developed into a pocket crushing run stopping All Pro DT. He contributed heavily to our Super Bowl team.

Travis Hall is a good call as well, drafted in the 6th and played 10 years for the Falcons.

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Jamal ran like a rhino. Once he got those insanely huge legs pumping, you just sat back and watched defenders fall on their a$$es. Shame about the whole cocaine on the toilet seat thing but hey! Dude could run like a bulldozer

Go Keithy Go Keithy as Phil Gould would say..

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my favorite 2nd favorite all time falcons play was JA32, crushing three defenders back,to back, to back on his way to a touch down, stiffed armed one off to the side, stiffed one straight into the ground like a crushed beer can, then ran right over the third. best running play EVER.

but i'd have to go with JVN at center as the best draft steal though.

by the way my all time favorite was scott case killing a punter in the back of the endzone for a safety, all the idiot had to was back up one step to save himself from a hit, but no he just stood there, and scott UNLOADED on him, almost started a brawl,other team wanted refs to throw a flag, man it was great smile.png scott just smiled and walked off the field.

It was Cases' rookie season. The punter was playing for the 49ers, he was trying to run out the clock at the end of the game. And yeah Case knocked the crap out of the guy, about the best play the Falcons made all day (they lost of course...)(

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Turner in just 4 seasons already has 5281 yards and 50 touchdowns

I wouldn't say Anderson was that much of a steal for 7 years

Yeah but we also gave him 30+ million,

If we are talking about draft Van Note is the guy I pick.

If we are talking about FA steals I have 2 words.

Terrance Mathis.

He was a little known jet who became one of the best underrated wrs in the nfc when he got here. What made him so great was also the fact that he put up big numbers in the pass heavy run and shoot, but then put up nearly as good of numbers in a more traditional run based offense.

He IMO was our best receiver until Roddy came along.

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