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The Ideal 2015 Atlanta Falcons Starting Offensive Line


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The Atlanta Falcons offensive line has taken a hit that it hasn’t recovered from since longtime C Todd McClure retired after the 2012 season. Atlanta went from perennial playoff team under Mike Smith in 2008-12 to a 5-win team in 2013-14. While the Falcons were able to move the ball vertically in former OC Dirk Koetter’s pass-heavy offense, Atlanta was one of the worst teams at running the football these last several years. The offensive line has not done well in either run blocking or pass protection for a few seasons. With a new regime coming into town, who should form the 2015 Atlanta Falcons starting offensive line?

LT Jake Matthews:

Last year’s first round pick out of Texas A&M had a baptism by fire first year with the Atlanta Falcons. Jake was initially going to play RT in Year One before transitioning down the road the primary protector of Matt Ryan’s blind side. But a preseason injury to often-hurt LT Sam Baker expedited the process as Matthews had to start at LT right away. While Jake did a marvelous job keeping Johnny Manziel clean in the pocket or wherever he decided to scramble to with the Aggies, unless you’re Jonathan Ogden you’re not going to come in a dominate at LT in the NFL right away.

Jake will succeed in Year Two as the Atlanta Falcons LT for three reasons. 1. His highly cerebral as he played QB in early high school. 2. His quickness and athleticism fits nicely into Shanahan’s zone blocking scheme. 3. He’s a Matthews, a proud member of the NFL’s most decorated family. His dad Bruce was one of the best LT’s ever with the Oilers/Titans. His uncle Clay II and cousin Clay III know a thing or two about pass rushing as an OLB.

LG Chris Chester:

With his release from the Washington Redskins, the Atlanta Falcons acted quickly to snatch up Chris Chester to help bolster their new look offensive line. Chester brings a veteran demeanor and a lunch pail work ethic to a Falcons o-line that needs to start showing some results. Chris is familiar with the zone blocking scheme of Kyle Shanahan as both were part of the Redskins just a few seasons back. Chester could play either guard spot though he has played most RG in the NFL with the ‘Skins and the Ravens.

Though he’s got a Touch of Grey in his jet black hairdo, I think Chester has the quickness and the intelligence to help us out in the interior now that longtime LG Justin Blalock is no longer with the team. Jon Asamoah could just as easily play LG for the Falcons, but I think Chester’s veteran presence is best served playing right next to the young OT phenom Jake Matthews. Left Guard might be a point of weakness on the Falcons’ offensive line as replacing Blalock isn’t easy. But Chester should see time at either guard position in 2015.

C Joe Hawley:

Joe Hawley really impressed me with his play in 2013. His grit and toughness made him the man to beat entering 2014 Falcons Training Camp. But a season-ending knee injury early on in 2014 left an already overwhelmed offensive line even more hamstrung. When Hawley has been the Falcons center, he commands the offensive line in a way that the center should. Before his injury, it looked like the Dirty Birds weren’t going to skip a beat at C following McClure’s retirement. While rookie James Stone filled in nicely for Hawley for most of 2015, I still think Joe Brawley is the man Atlanta needs to snap the ball.

Though undersized for a center, Atlanta is shifting towards being more agile on the offensive line and I believe that it suits Hawley well. While we now know that Stone is a solid backup option at center for the Falcons, Atlanta can take its time getting Hawley back to 100% coming back from an injury.

RG Jon Asamoah:

Thomas Dimitroff’s decision to sign Jon Asamoah in free agency before last year was my favorite offseason move the Falcons made in 2014. Asamoah helped anchor an outstanding offensive line for the Kansas City Chiefs in 2013 and looked like Atlanta was getting Jon in his prime with this free agent acquisition. Atlanta had major issues at right guard in 2013 (RGGR was hard to watch). Of all the Falcons offensive linemen, Asamoah played at the highest level most consistently. Despite being deplorable on the outside, the Falcons were decent in the interior in 2014. Atlanta looks to have itself a nice building block on the inside going forward with Jon Asamoah. Like Chris Chester, Asamoah could play either guard position for Kyle Shanahan but I liked his production at right guard last fall so I would keep him where he is because right tackle might continue to have issues in 2015.

RT Ryan Schraeder:

Last year affirmed the notion that things never turn out as planned. Jake Matthews started out playing RT in 2014, but Sam Baker’s preseason injury changed all that instantly. Matthews went over to the blind side and Atlanta struggled to find answers then on the right. Lamar Holmes lacked the quickness to pass protect in Koetter’s offense. With more of an emphasis on agility, he might not fit in anywhere in Shanahan’s zone blocking scheme. I don’t trust Sam Baker to stay healthy as he is one injury away from being out of the league. So why not give the starting job to Ryan Schraeder? The former UDFA out of Valdosta State has played the best of any Falcons backups on the offensive line these last few years. People tend to overlook undrafted free agents but VSU has a great football program. It’s Jessie Tuggle’s alma mater. Schraeder plays with a chip on his shoulder and seems to put himself in better position to make blocks than most young players. If I were Kyle Shanahan or new OL Coach Chris Morgan, I would give Ryan Schraeder many opportunities to seize the starting right tackle job in training camp for the 2015 Atlanta Falcons.

http://atlallday.com/2015/06/05/the-ideal-2015-atlanta-falcons-starting-offensive-line/

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So it wasn't noticeable how suck he was playing hurt? He was useless. This is a number 6 elite bloodline we're talking about here. Once he got hurt he should have been resting on the bench

He didn't "rest on the bench" because he knew we needed him. Too many other softies were "resting on the bench".

Or perhaps you would have liked Levine Toilolo to shuffle over to LT?

Some people will dredge up the most ignorant, stupid, foolish crap just to generate hate towards our few good players.

Do you know what a Lis Franc injury is? Do you know how painful that is? Most people immediately hit I/R with that injury. Jake Matthews valiantly struggled to play through a debiliating injury because he knew we needed him.

If anything, Mike Smith should be blamed for not shutting him down. If playing through that exacerbated the injury, which is a very real possibility, then Smith should be squarely blamed for any long term damage Matthews suffered. Just like Shanahan was rightly blamed for RGIII's injury.

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LT: Mike Kenn

LG: Bill Fralic

C: Jeff Van Note

RG: R.C. Thielmann

RT: Warren Bryant

No, not in their prime. Right now, at their current age, they could still beat out the guys we had out there last year.

I would like to agree with you but that might be just a stretch

well you might be right for the first quarter

back to topic

I thought the Person played ahead of Chester at LG at Washington

why put Chester ahead of Person here?

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I would like to agree with you but that might be just a stretch

well you might be right for the first quarter

back to topic

I thought the Person played ahead of Chester at LG at Washington

why put Chester ahead of Person here?

Chester was the starter. I thought I read that Person had zero NFL starts under his belt.

And the fact that my previous post didn't get laughed off the forum speaks volumes about what we trotted out onto the field last year.

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He didn't get the lisfranc injury until the last game of the season when we played the panties you dummy. Before then it was just an ankle injury. Do you even watch the games? He looked horrible playing on a minor injury. And if our qb is getting killed, get your *** on the bench. I don't want you being mediocre tough getting beat every play, that's not a benefit to the team. Bout as effective when roddy was playing decoy looking terrible 2 season ago.

Lol minor injury? Could you elaborate? I'm literally laughing as I read your post lately.

He didn't get the lisfranc injury until the last game of the season when we played the panties you dummy. Before then it was just an ankle injury. Do you even watch the games? He looked horrible playing on a minor injury. And if our qb is getting killed, get your *** on the bench. I don't want you being mediocre tough getting beat every play, that's not a benefit to the team. Bout as effective when roddy was playing decoy looking terrible 2 season ago.

Lol minor injury? Could you elaborate? I'm literally laughing as I read your post lately.
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Been there done that. They hyped the line last year too. Half of them are still hurt and Matthews showed that he can't play thru injury. I won't used the b word (bust) but ain't looking pretty for him

What are you talkin bout man? He played through injury the majority of the season last year.

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the ankle injury he had was minor so he played and struggled. Lisfranc is serious but he didn't get that til week 17. When he looked bad all season it wasn't from lisfranc as incorrectly stated by the guy who thinks he knows what he's talking about

You can pretend to know everything about his health last season all you want. It doesn't exactly help add validity to anything you say, but keep it up.

Even Matthews' ankle injury wasn't reported officially until well after the fact. Bottom line is you literally know nothing about it. You don't know the severity of the injury. You don't know how many injuries he in fact did sustain. Nobody does. Quit pretending. Let the grown ups talk now...

Edited by Atlfanstckndenver
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the ankle injury he had was minor so he played and struggled. Lisfranc is serious but he didn't get that til week 17. When he looked bad all season it wasn't from lisfranc as incorrectly stated by the guy who thinks he knows what he's talking about

He had a high ankle sprain early, which never had a chance to heal because he played through it. The Lis Franc injury was later. He still played through injuries most players would hit the sauna with the same injury.

Out of curiosity, what is your stake in running down a tough, talented, team-first player who switched positions, played through injuries, and shows a lot of promise?

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Well no crap. Regardless, you are the one going from thread to thread spewing presumptuous bs. Ultimately you come off as an ignorant gnat that just keeps trying it's best to ruffle feathers. Again, just keep it up. It's cute. You know you should do yourself a favor and dig up some of the older tatf troll posts. You'd learn a thing or two.

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He had a high ankle sprain early, which never had a chance to heal because he played through it. The Lis Franc injury was later. He still played through injuries most players would hit the sauna with the same injury.

Out of curiosity, what is your stake in running down a tough, talented, team-first player who switched positions, played through injuries, and shows a lot of promise?

What's his stake....great question. I don't think he even knows. I seriously think we just have a very bored, very pathetic try hard here, who simply does not know how to troll.
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