Quantcast
X

Have feedback / suggestions? Let us know!

NFL Atlanta Falcons

5 Offseason Additions With Most to Offer the Atlanta Falcons in 2014

5 Offseason Additions With Most to Offer Atlanta Falcons in 2014

Jake Matthews
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

After stumbling to a disappointing 4-12 record in 2013, the Atlanta Falcons added several new pieces during free agency and the draft this offseason with the aim of re-emerging as a Super Bowl-caliber team. Here are their five newcomers with the most to offer this fall.

5. Ra'Shede Hageman, DE

Ra'Shede Hageman
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

5. Ra'Shede Hageman, DE

Ra'Shede Hageman
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Few second-round picks have as much upside as Minnesota product Ra'Shede Hageman. His quickness off the snap is nothing short of elite. He didn't hear his name called until Day 2 of May's draft for a reason, though. His motor runs hot and cold, making him a boom-or-bust talent capable of blossoming into a star or never sniffing the starting lineup.

4. Jon Asamoah, OG

Jon Asamoah
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

4. Jon Asamoah, OG

Jon Asamoah
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The Falcons desperately needed to upgrade their interior offensive line after dismal run blocking in 2013, and did just that by signing Jon Asamoah in free agency. The former Kansas City Chief has fared well as a run blocker and pass protector over the past two seasons. He should be a big upgrade inside for Atlanta.

3. Devonta Freeman, RB

Devonta Freeman
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

3. Devonta Freeman, RB

Devonta Freeman
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

It may be a bit surprising to see a fourth-round pick ranked so high, but Florida State product Devonta Freeman has the skill set to contribute immediately in Atlanta, if not steal a starting spot. The Falcons didn't get much production from their stable of runners last season, which leaves Steven Jackson and Jacquizz Rodgers, who project as No. 1 and 2 on the depth chart in advance of camp, vulnerable to a promising young back like Freeman.

2. Jake Matthews, OT

Jake Matthews
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

2. Jake Matthews, OT

Jake Matthews
Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

First-round pick Jake Matthews was one of the most talented prospects of the 2014 draft class. Perceived to be one of the safest bets to succeed among this year's crop of rookies, Matthews possesses every trait scouts look for in a franchise left tackle. He'll likely begin his career at right tackle, but it's only a matter of time before he's protecting quarterback Matt Ryan's blindside.

1. Paul Soliai, NT

Paul Soliai
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

1. Paul Soliai, NT

Paul Soliai
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Paul Soliai probably wasn't the best player Atlanta acquired this offseason, but he fills arguably its biggest need. With the No. 31 ranked run defense in 2013, the Falcons desperately needed a true nose tackle to occupy blockers in order to keep the linebacker corps clean. Soliai, a former Miami Dolphin, has the size and power to be the missing piece that drastically improves Atlanta's run defense.