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Mike Mayock Weighs In On Falcons, Draft Prospects

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Mike Mayock is a big name in the world of draft analysts, trailing just behind Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay. On Tuesday he spent nearly three hours talking to reporters about the upcoming 2014 NFL Draft.

SB Nation's own Matthew Fairburn was on the call, and from him and the official transcript, we've gleaned some interesting thoughts for Falcons fans. Here's a rundown.

  • On the Falcons drafting a tackle: "You know what, I personally think they need to get an edge guy at six if they can and then go get the tackle later. But, if you want to know about those tackles, I think the safety pick in the offensive line is Jake Matthews from A&M.  He's already a professional.  He's got a skill set, you plug him in day one and he'll play at a high level."
  • On Barr, Clowney and Mack possibly falling to Atlanta: "Yeah, especially depending how quickly those quarterbacks go.  If I'm an Atlanta fan, I'm rooting for three quarterbacks to go as fast as possible so I'm left with nothing but great position players."
  • On Kony Ealy, a sleeper pick to the Falcons: "As far as Ealy is concerned, ended up liking him more than I expected to, and I think he's a 43 defensive end.  I don't really think he's an outside linebacker.

    I think to compare him to, say, [Aldon] Smith who came out a couple years ago. He's not quite as athletic as Aldon Smith, but he's a little more physical, a little better against the run."

    So I think he's probably a base 43 end and I think he'll go somewhere in that 20, 23 range in the first round.

  • On Khalil Mack in a 4-3: "I think he could play  with his skill set and his ability to drop, his ability to  I think he could play SAM or WILL to be honest with you.  He's 63, 248.  You could line him up on a tight end and he'd be okay."

    I think the important thing is that if you are drafting him as a 43 team you have to make sure that in nickel and sub situations, you're freeing him up to go get the quarterback and in today's NFL, because of the versatility in defenses, I think that's fine.
  • On the depth of the draft class: "You can go three rounds, four rounds deep this year, and get a starting offensive tackle."

  • On Clowney's drive: "All those things (add) up. My biggest concern is just what's his mental makeup. How important is it to him when he gets a big paycheck to become the best player in football or is he just going to be happy to be a millionaire. That's the most critical checking point from an organization (standpoint), is finding out what's the motivation. I know what kind of football player he is when motivated. I just want to know what kind of kid I'm getting."

Your thoughts regarding these comments? Be sure to read Fairburn's story for more.