The Falcons are at a crossroads — they could either be a team that surprises a lot of people like last season or contend for the first pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. I don’t think Atlanta is done adding to their roster, especially with guys coming available after June 1st. Will Deion Jones be cut, and if he is, will the Falcons use the money they save? There’s still plenty of time before camp and June 1st cuts, so let’s take a quick peek at what the Falcons may do in the coming weeks before their opener against the Saints. Be sure to check out the projections for the offense.
We’re starting this one off hot; I have undrafted free agent Derrick Tangelo making the roster over Anthony Rush and John Cominsky. I like Tangelo’s tape coming out of Penn State, and I think he could have a big camp that propels him to the 53-man roster. Additionally, I have the Falcons picking up another former Bear in Akiem Hicks. Hicks would be a menace next to Grady Jarrett. Don’t look now, but this is actually a halfway respectable group.
EDGE1 Lorenzo Carter
EDGE2 Ade Ogundeji
EDGE3 Arnold Ebiketie
EDGE4 DeAngelo Malone
Pretty simple unit here, not a lot of guys, but I think the Falcons will look to use some of the linebackers listed below off the edge. This group is completely different from 2021 outside of Ogundeji — and that’s a good thing. There’s a lot of upside here.
Another surprise on this list is thumper Nate Landman out of Colorado snagging a fifth linebacker spot. As you’ll notice, Deion Jones is absent, as I think the Falcons will trade him after June 1st. This is where Atlanta would free up the money to sign Hicks. Troy Andersen probably isn’t ready to be a full-time player, so the Falcons keep Landman on the roster for some depth.
Rolling with this amount of cornerbacks is risky, especially considering Casey Hayward’s injury history, but we know Atlanta likes to use their safeties in a variety of ways as well. Richie Grant may take on some nickel corner responsibilities, but I wouldn’t be shocked to see an additional name on this list like Mike Ford.
I wouldn’t be too discouraged seeing Richie Grant at fourth on this list, I think he’ll be better, and the Falcons will be heavily rotating their safeties. I could also see Brad Hawkins or Teez Tabor grabbing an extra spot here, but we’re getting low on roster spots.
Photographer: Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire