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Five Thoughts On Falcons Roster Decisions


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Dan Quinn whittled his roster down to 53 players this weekend, and though more moves are on the way, the 2015 Falcons have firmly taken shape.

QB Situation Resolved: Instead of keeping a veteran like T.J. Yates or Rex Grossman, the Falcons opted to keep Duke product Sean Renfree as their backup quarterback. Renfree has, by most accounts, shown he can be a competent game manager at the professional level. His preseason numbers (26 of 36 for 237 yards and a touchdown) certainly reflect that notion. Offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan and quarterbacks coach Matt LaFleur have praised the 25-year-old’s intellect and believe he understands the system well enough to provide insurance behind Matt Ryan.

Bevy of Receivers Make It: Surprisingly, the Falcons opted to keep seven wide receivers on board. Julio Jones, Roddy White, Leonard Hankerson and Justin Hardy will be leaned on offensively; Devin Hester, Eric Weems and Nick Williams should offer a lot on special teams. Williams, whom Quinn has lauded several times, worked his way into a roster spot by being a versatile—and at times electric—player. The undrafted Connecticut alum hauled in 17 catches during preseason for 157 yards and shined as a punt returner, as well.

Pair of TEs Left: The release of Tony Moeaki leaves only Jacob Tamme and Levine Toilolo at tight end. Toilolo progressed a lot this summer—especially as a blocker—and has put himself in position to improve quite a bit in 2015. Although Tamme came down with just one catch in three preseason games, he had a fantastic training camp and seems to have developed a nice repertoire with Ryan. Shanahan’s offense has historically emphasized TEs, so it wouldn’t be shocking if another were added at some point.

Ward Sticks Around: Antone Smith’s departure opened up a spot for Oregon State’s Terron Ward, who could have value in the running and passing game. The 5-foot-7 RB excelled during training camp and broke off a few nice runs during preseason—including a 12-yard dash on Thursday. Devonta Freeman is still nursing a hamstring injury, so the undrafted rookie might be called upon to spell Tevin Coleman in the coming weeks.

Therezie Kept: Robenson Therezie, another undrafted rookie, impressed a lot of people during camp and earned himself a roster spot at safety. A fast, athletically gifted defensive back, he joins the Falcons after a successful run at Auburn, where he started for two years and played in 49 games. Between his interception versus Tennessee and his strong work against the Dolphins, Therezie proved he can play Dan Quinn’s style of football.


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This is what I would've done. I'm concerned about RG and LB. Chester and Reed would not even be on the team. I would've gone after another LB in FA.

Also in FA we already had our NB in Adams. I would've drafted Q. Rollins in the 2nd and put him at FS. Then in the 4th I would've taken RG Mark Glowinski. Of course we then wouldn't have Hardy, but I think Nick Williams can do what Hardy will do.

So here are my changes:

RG Glowinski > Chester

LB anybody > Reed

FS Rollins > Allen

WR Williams = Hardy

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Hindsight but I would love to have him over an old Chester.

Chester ain't gonna set the world on fire, but he's solid & Shanny needed to have at least one guy on the line that he knows w/out a doubt gets his system & can help the others in the first season running it here as well. He's a coach on the field to a small degree, so he has far more value than a rookie would.

In a year, once Matthews, Levitre, and Schraeder have it down, Chester will have served his purpose & might be pretty easy to replace with a healthy Asamoah or a draft pick. Until then though, Chester make a lot of sense.

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