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Atlanta's D Improves And Will Get Better


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This is an article I found on Yardbarker.com

Pretty much we know all what is said below but still a good read.

I believe we will still sign a couple more FAs for our D. The draft will give us some really good players and hope whomever we draft first will contribute immediately and be a difference maker!

I could see our D this season being in the top 15 (closer to 15/16, then the top 10).

But in Quinn's second season, I think that every team will need to watch out for us as I feel the D will be in the top 5.

I think Reed is going to be a beast and be a steal in FA signings. Same goes for Durant.

ARTICLE-

The Atlanta Falcons ramped up their efforts this week to improve a roster that managed just six wins last season. They will need to continue to improve a defensive unit that ranked near the bottom of the league last season in every major defensive category if they hope to return to the postseason for the first time since 2012.

On Tuesday, Atlanta made two under-the-radar acquisitions at the linebacker position, signing former Detroit Lion Justin Durant and former Houston Texan Brooks Reed.

The Falcons filled the void left by linebacker Sean Weatherspoon after he signed a one-year contract with the Arizona Cardinals. Resigning Weatherspoon was said to be a priority for the Falcons; they ultimately decided to go in a different direction after he played only seven games in the previous two seasons.

Sports Illustrated senior writer Peter King had high praise for Durant when discussing some of the best signings in free agency thus far.

"I think the most underrated signing Tuesday was Atlantas deal with linebacker Justin Durant, a rangy, attacking, highly instinctive sideline-to-sideline player when healthy," King posted on mmqb.si.com.

Durant is 6-foot-1 and 230 pounds, he has played nine seasons in the NFL for three different teams. He was having his most productive year as a pro last season before suffering a torn bicep after just six games for the Dallas Cowboys. He has since had surgery and expects to be ready for training camp.

Im a run and hit kind of a linebacker," Durant said. "Im quick. Im explosive. Im fast to the ball, always around the ball, when I get there, Im just going to try to make as much noise as possible."

He was leading the Cowboys in tackles with 61 at the time of his injury. He also had two forced fumbles, four tackles for a loss and an interception. He has missed 16 games over the past two seasons, which both ended on injured reserve.

Reed is 6-foot-3 and 255 pounds and can play both inside and outside linebacker. He has been durable, starting 52 of 60 games over his career and playing in 16 games in three of his four seasons.

Last season for the Texans, Reed, 28, had 41 combined tackles, three sacks and one interception in 16 games. His career high in sacks was six in his rookie season.

Reed is known primarily as a run stopper but has already expressed his desire to help improve an Atlanta pass rush that tied for 30th in the league with 22.0 sacks last season. He also talked about potentially being in many different positions across the defense.

I know I can improve my pass-rushing game, Reed said during a conference call a day after signing with the Falcons. "I see myself playing the SAM (strong side) position, outside linebacker, setting the edge on the run and creating a pass rush on third down, whether that's off the edge or being a spinner, or a buck, coming up the middle and just getting games going with the inside guys."

Fast forward to Thursday and the Falcons continued to improve the defense, signing three players to contracts.

Two of those players are pass rushers, former Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive end Adrian Clayborn and former Seattle Seahawks linebacker OBrien Schofield.

Clayborn, 26, is entering his fifth season in the NFL. The 2011 first-round pick played in 36 games in his four seasons with the Buccaneers, including just one in 2014 due to a torn biceps injury. When healthy, Clayborn has been productive on the field, his career totals include 121 tackles (72 solo) with 13.5 sacks, five forced fumbles and one pass defensed.

Schofield enters his sixth season in the NFL, having played the previous two under Quinn as the defensive coordinator in Seattle. The 27-year-old linebacker played in 31 regular season games for the Seahawks, totaling 28 tackles and three sacks. Schofield is a versatile piece, he played defensive end and linebacker in a reserve role for Quinn and will look to help improve Atlantas defense wherever he is placed.

The Falcons also signed former New York Jets' cornerback Phillip Adams. Adams started four games for the Jets last season, totaling 21 tackles, one interception and three pass deflections. Adams will likely compete for snaps in a backup role behind starters Desmond Trufant and Robert Alford. Robert McClain, who played in nickel packages for the Falcons last year is currently a free agent.

Atlanta is making moves in the right direction early in the offseason as it looks to form a new competitive identity under head coach Dan Quinn.

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I disagree with you about the D being ranked 15th or 16th this year. I think we will be low 20's. Which is a BIG improvement from dead last. Jumping 10 spots in the first year of Quinn's defense would impress me.

After reading what you wrote, I would have to agree with you

. Based how we finished, anything will be an improvement.

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I don't know how much we'll jump up in the ratings of yards and points allowed, but I DO think we'll jump way up in how disruptive our defense will be, especially once we finalize all the offseason acquisitions that we have only just begun.

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Very excited.

Quinn and TD didn't give in to idiot TATF fans, and their wanton fits of instant gratification. Instead of going for an NBA like Approach of getting one LeBron to play on a roster of bums, they filled needs with solid to good players everywhere. Clayborn starts at (LDE), reed is a starter(SAM), Durant is a starter (Will), and Schofield is a good rotational piece. Adding either ray or beasley in the draft should give us the pass rush that Smittiot starved us from. We can go TE or MLB in the second, and pickup Abdullah in the 3rd.

We also finally cut overrated Harry Handle and got a 3rd WR who is a red zone theeat.

Pretty pleased here.

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let;s look at it differently

DL cut 4 --Osi, Bierman, Mass, Peters signed Clayborn that's upgrading??????

LB yea ok but signing just about anyone would be an upgrade for that understaffed group

CB lost 3 Arenas, Wilson, McClain signed Paul Adams and that's an upgrade????

SS had 4 added a 5th (Godfrey) why?????

FS lost Lowery gained no-one to replace him yet

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let;s look at it differently

DL cut 4 --Osi, Bierman, Mass, Peters signed Clayborn that's upgrading??????

LB yea ok but signing just about anyone would be an upgrade for that understaffed group

CB lost 3 Arenas, Wilson, McClain signed Paul Adams and that's an upgrade????

SS had 4 added a 5th (Godfrey) why?????

FS lost Lowery gained no-one to replace him yet

I think they're planning on using Godfrey as a Fs. Also Arenas wasn't all that good anyways we'll probably pick up another corner or two maybe resign McClain. Clayborn is probably better than all the linemen we got rid of with the exception of Peters.

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let;s look at it differently

DL cut 4 --Osi, Bierman, Mass, Peters signed Clayborn that's upgrading??????

LB yea ok but signing just about anyone would be an upgrade for that understaffed group

CB lost 3 Arenas, Wilson, McClain signed Paul Adams and that's an upgrade????

SS had 4 added a 5th (Godfrey) why?????

FS lost Lowery gained no-one to replace him yet

None of the players you listed except for Lowery and maybe Peters did much last year. Sometimes addition by subtraction is an upgrade. Sometimes getting ride of comfortable and complacent and replacing them with players thats hungry is an upgrade. Like you are alluding too, there is more than one way to look at the moves. There will be more additions and subtractions as time pass. Edited by FentayeJones
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None of the players you listed except for Lowery and maybe Peters did much last year. Sometimes addition by subtraction is an upgrade. Sometimes getting ride of comfortable and complacent and replacing them with players thats hungry is an upgrade. Like you are alluding too, there is more than one way to look at the moves. There will be more additions and subtractions and time pass.

problem here is if those players were no good why were they on the field???

What does that say about their "backups" that the falcons hung on to????

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Guest Mr Plow

We will be better for three reasons:

1) we have better personnel

2) we have better coaches with a proven system

3) we will get a "bump" from the excitement and energy that comes naturally with a fresh start.

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We will be better for three reasons:

1) we have better personnel

2) we have better coaches with a proven system

3) we will get a "bump" from the excitement and energy that comes naturally with a fresh start.

I hope you're right. Hard Knocks should've done that for us last year. I'm still gonna miss Mike Tice. Dude was a Miracle worker with what he had to work with.

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problem here is if those players were no good why were they on the field???

What does that say about their "backups" that the falcons hung on to????

Why they were still on the field? thats a question for Smitty and Nolan.

Most of the "back ups" are still young and on rookie cntracts. My guess is that after film evaluation DQ saw some potential... but that is just my guess..

In less than a month, these players will put pads on and the real evaluation will start. We will see then.

Edited by FentayeJones
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let;s look at it differently

DL cut 4 --Osi, Bierman, Mass, Peters signed Clayborn that's upgrading??????

LB yea ok but signing just about anyone would be an upgrade for that understaffed group

CB lost 3 Arenas, Wilson, McClain signed Paul Adams and that's an upgrade????

SS had 4 added a 5th (Godfrey) why?????

FS lost Lowery gained no-one to replace him yet

Your terror and bewilderment seems to stem from the false premise that we will add no more players. We pick at the top of the draft in every round, I expect to get players in first three rounds that immediately contribute this year and a starter from our 8th pick. I except us to add strong veteran palyers who fit our scheme perfectly in June, I expect us to continue adding players all the way up through the first snap of the season.

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