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Vonta Leach Released: Do The Falcons Bite?

The Ravens released their star fullback. Could Atlanta become his new home?

Vonta Leach, or Ovie Mughelli 2.0?
Vonta Leach, or Ovie Mughelli 2.0?
Rob Carr

We remain in the doldrums of the offseason, a mostly calm and uneventful segment of the NFL year were it not for the recent signing of one particular quarterback to one particular New England football team. Bristol is naturally exploding with delight.

But that is of no consequence to the Falcons. One move that could potentially have an impact on Atlanta, however, is the release of Ravens Pro Bowl fullback Vonta Leach.

Baltimore cut ties with the 31 year-old veteran after the team failed to come to terms on a restructured contract, according to reports. With Leach due $3 million next season and rookie Kyle Juszczyk already in the fold, it makes sense that the Ravens are willing to make the move.

But what of Leach, who even at 31 remains one of the best pure lead blockers in the NFL? The Ravens were ranked No. 10 and No. 11 in rushing offense during Leach's two years, and he was a standout with the Texans before that.

I'm not guaranteeing anything, but there's a chance that the Falcons, who now have some freed up cap space now that Tyson Clabo's salary is off the books, could be looking to acquire Leach.

The reasoning here is that even though Atlanta drafted Bradie Ewing in the fifth round in 2012, we're still not totally sure how good he looks coming off that ACL tear last preseason. If Harry Douglas and Peria Jerry have taught us anything, it's that knee tears can really hurt careers.

And with Ewing still a question mark in my book, who else could the Falcons turn to? Jason Snelling is a possibility. The recently signed Patrick DiMarco is another. But neither possess the type of talent that Leach could bring on a (relatively) cheap one-year deal.

And given the pace at which the Richard Seymour talks have been progressing, it's starting to look less and less likely that he winds up a Falcons.

I will admit this is still a long shot to happen. I would be shocked if anything happened, and now that Leach is released there are probably more pressing positions Atlanta could address with its cap space. We're also not yet sure how a new Matt Ryan contract could affect this year's cap number.

But at the same time, the Falcons have been sorely lacking in the "punishing fullback" department ever since Ovie Mughelli was let go by the team.

And if it does turn out that Ewing is not at 100 percent for the upcoming season, I think the possibility of having a backfield that features Leach, Steven Jackson and Jacquizz Rodgers sounds too good to pass up.