FLOWERY BRANCH GA - JULY 30: Sean Weatherspoon #56 of the Atlanta Falcons runs off the field in between drills during opening day of training camp on July 30 2010 at the Falcons Training Complex in Flowery Branch Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Here's a little exercise in projection for you this morning.
The Falcons will want a strong linebacking corps under Mike Nolan. It's an integral piece of the defense when you're planning on deploying myriad schemes. This year, the team's linebackers will be called upon to rush the passer, cover tight ends and running backs and stop the run. Nolan will want six guys who have the skills, the tenacity and the versatility to make that work.
We know the starters, but the depth is a lot more murky. The Falcons have a lot of young guys who will be vying for what will likely be three open reserve slots.
After the jump, my crack at it.
Here's my best guess at who makes the final roster:
- OLB Sean Weatherspoon
- MLB Lofa Tatupu
- OLB Stephen Nicholas
- MLB Akeem Dent
- OLB Spencer Adkins
- OLB Matt Hansen
Hansen may be a bit of a controversial choice, but he's been kicking around since last year and seems like a solid dude. I'm not sold on Robert James at all, and while guys like Jerrell Harris and Pat Schiller are talented, they probably need more seasoning on the practice squad.