Falcons Tried To Trade Up For Jake Matthews At #3, Per Peter King

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

An interesting report that gives you a sense of just how willing to wheel and deal the Atlanta Falcons were.

The Falcons have never been shy about trading up under Thomas Dimitroff, and had everything gone according to plan, that's precisely what they would have done in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

Peter King delivers an interesting look at how the Falcons attempted to jump up to #3 with Jacksonville to ensure they got Jake Matthews, not Khalil Mack. Jacksonville elected to stay put to ensure they got Blake Bortles.

Ironically, Atlanta would have picked Jake Matthews at three; the Falcons got him at six. And Bortles would have been Jacksonville’s pick at three or six.

It's a fascinating little blurb that turns one of my core assumptions about this draft on its head. Knowing the Falcons would have made the trade for Jadeveon Clowney at #1 had the price come down, and learning later that they were attempting to move into the first for Jimmie Ward or Dee Ford, I had assumed the consensus second-best pass rusher in the draft would have been the selection had the Falcons made it to #3 or #4. Instead, it looks like they were intent on ensuring they got their left tackle of the future all along. It's worth noting that the Falcons also were rumored to have interest in Demarcus Lawrence at #37 or slightly before, so it's clear an edge rusher was still a priority. Jake Matthews was just a bigger one.

Knowing that, things worked out swimmingly for the Falcons. They got their choice of tackle at #6 and got to hold on to the reported third round pick it would have taken to move up with the Jaguars, which turned into a promising if unpolished Dezmen Southward at free safety. For once, Thomas Dimitroff found that not trading up served him very well.

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