Atlanta Falcons Should Think Defense with First-Round Pick

By Ken Grace
Jerome Miron–US Presswire

Stocks will rise and fall as the NFL Combine takes place and even teams like the Atlanta Falcons will look for new talent to develop or help take them to the next level.

There are a few mock drafts that have the Falcons, who have the 30th pick, selecting Tight End Tyler Eifert from Notre Dame in the first round. A few other analysts have listed players such as Inside Linebacker Arthur Brown from Kansas State or Kawann Short, a defensive tackle from Purdue with their first pick. Atlanta has enough tight ends on its roster and could possibly talk future Hall of Famer, Tony Gonzalez into another year. If anything, Atlanta should focus on defense, specifically up front. The Falcons are hurting bad for some help up front, especially with John Abraham aging. Not to mention, Atlanta could use any help possible stuffing the run in the middle.

While Atlanta will not have the “luxury” of getting a top 10 pick in the first round, there could be some quality defensive tackles, ends and linebackers available, particularly guys with substantial size. Some of the defensive ends Atlanta should take a look at are Margus Hunt from Southern Methodist University a 6’8”, 275 pound defensive end. Hunt is an athletic freak of nature with his size and unsuspecting speed, not to mention he’s from Estonia; he should mesh well with D-Block. Hunt could be a project given that he has only been playing football since 2009 but his potential is great.

Another player Atlanta should try and get their hands on is defensive tackle John Jenkins, the “local” from the University of Georgia. Jenkins is 6’3”, 351 pounds and extremely meaty. Jenkins was a key cog in helping the Bulldogs stuff the run against SEC offenses. Jenkins is a big fella, but is extremely quick and could be just what the doctor ordered for Atlanta on defense. Although Jenkins is quite massive, he possesses great speed and his motor never stops. He too would mesh well with D-Block which is of the utmost importance.

If Atlanta drafts according to their needs instead of who is available, they will probably be selecting Kawann Short out of Purdue University. Short is 6’3” and 310 pounds and is generally considered one of the Boilermakers best defensive players. Purdue has quietly produced a few really good defensive prospects as of late, so he could be a quality pick for Atlanta. This past season, Short amassed 41 tackles, six sacks and 12.5 tackles for a loss.

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