Well, the season has started off on a bittersweet note. Against a very formidable defense, the Falcons offense laid an egg. 0 touchdowns the entire game. There are a lot of complaints that an offense with players like Ryan, Turner, White, and Gonzalez shouldn't be kept out of the endzone. And I agree, however, if there was anything I think can improve quickly, it would be the offense. Personally, I was impressed with the defense. Barring an obvious lack of concentration at the end of the game, the defense kept the Steelers offense in check. And to think, next week we have our (deserving of a Pro Bowl) DT Babineaux back. There is usually a decent improvement between games one and two, and I am already excited about what I saw from the team this past weekend. Follow me after the jump and we can discuss guys whose names have been added to the hot list of guys who could be replaced either this season or in the draft.
Sam Baker. Well, I think a lot of people were angered with Sam Baker after the game this weekend. The question is, has Baker's time in Atlanta run out? I think we need to look at potential replacements and see what is available. As far as the draft goes, and I admit this is way to early to talk about a position like left tackle, there are not a lot of guys who are looking like solid picks. WalterFootball only has two tackles rated as consensus first round picks. In that case, I would either look at a diamond in the rough later in the draft, or a potential veteran free agent who can hold down the line until a suitable replacement is found. Although Dmitroff loves seniors, and Anthony Costanza out of BC fits the typically pick.
Michael Jenkins. I think this guy has been one of the more unpopular guys on the team since he was drafted. I admit that blocking can only get you so far at the wide receiver position, but I think he puts forth a lot more effort than a lot of people think. Still, if this is Michael Jenkins playing at full potential, how are we supposed to compete with teams like the Cowboys and Saints who are going two and three deep at WR? This is where I get excited. Have you seen the WRs coming out of college this year? AJ Green will not be around when we draft, but out of Julio Jones, Jonathan Baldwin, and Michael Floyd, one of them will be. Could you imagine matching one of those guys across from Roddy White?
John Abraham. I love the guy. Really, I do. But as soon as he steps into the world of retirement, who will be there to take his place? Biermann has performed admirably so far. JA98 will never be an outstanding DE. Sidbury is coming along, but will he ever be an everydown kinda DE? Well, unlike last years draft that was oozing great DEs, this year is not the case. I think we are going to keep almost the same rotation next year as well (assuming no lock-out, God help me cope if their is a lock out). I am just not excited by what I am seeing in college, and unless there is a disruntled DE that wants out of his current situation, I don't see much action at the DE position.
Michael Turner. What?!?!?! Turner the Burner? I know. Some people are nodding their heads in agreement while others are shouting words of blasphemy. I admit that I personally am a fan of Turner. I'm just trying to think ahead at this point. But, in the end, I don't see any immediate changes coming here in the immediate future either. There are only two guys worth even considering (Ingram from Bama and Williams from VT) and I'm not sure either one of them will be around when we pick. Also, how often do you acquire a running back in free agency who ends up being really good? The success cases are much more sparse than the failures.
These are just a few ideas after some very early impressions. What are your thoughts? Any other guys you think need to be replaced soon? Regardless, Go Jackets and Go Falcons!!!! I am expecting a much better weekend of football this weekend.