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Bucky Brooks - Falcons Draft Needs


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Atlanta Falcons

Biggest needs: Pass Rusher, running back, offensive tackle.




REPLAYTop 3 draft targets: Atlanta Falcons

First-year head coach Dan Quinn is expected to invigorate the Falcons with his infectious energy and defensive acumen. Given his success as Seahawks defensive coordinator over the past two seasons, he will certainly look to upgrade the Falcons' front seven with explosive athletes in key positions. At OLB, in particular, Atlanta needs to add a dynamic rusher with explosive first-step quickness, acceleration and closing burst. Clemson's Vic Beasley and Missouri's Shane Ray are the most explosive pass rushers in the draft, but Florida's Dante Fowler is also capable of getting after the passer with a power-based approach. If a series of positive drug tests didn't torpedo his character grade, Nebraska's Randy Gregory could enter the conversation. The dismissal of Steven Jackson puts the Falcons back in the running back market. Devonta Freeman flashed potential as a rookie and Antone Smith is a nice home-run threat, but the backfield lacks some oomph. Atlanta could look for a feature back like Minnesota's David Cobb or Boise State's Jay Ajayi, or look to add a complementary back like Alabama's T.J. Yeldon or Miami's Duke Johnson. The Falcons could be interested in a big, athletic offensive tackle with developmental potential -- someone like Pittsburgh's T.J. Clemmings or Penn State's Donovan Smith.

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