The NFL Draft is over for Atlanta, and the Falcons walk away six players richer than they were Thursday afternoon. While we'll need years to know whether this was a truly successful draft class or not, the early reception is positive, and Atlanta seems to have added legitimate talent even though they still have some question marks at key positions like safety and left guard.
Here's a full reckoning of the Falcons' picks. Expect a full breakdown, draft grades and more later tonight and tomorrow morning from The Falcoholic team.
Beasley gives the team a dynamic, athletic edge rusher for the first time since John Abraham was released. He'll immediately slot in as the team's starting LEO and should be a tremendous asset for Dan Quinn.
A tall, physical cornerback who can handle the kind of press coverage Dan Quinn likes. His question marks include three prior failed drug tests and his level of refinement, but Collins is likely ticketed for starting duties outside.
Coleman has a nice blend of size and speed, and his ability to make a cut and fly makes him a nice fit for the Falcons' zone blocking-heavy scheme. He lacks great vision, but if the line can work for him, that shouldn't matter overmuch. He'll be the lead ball carrier in 2015, which is a mild surprise for me because I thought Devonta Freeman had a legitimate shot to carry the load.
Hardy is a Harry Douglas replacement. He's not an elite athlete and he doesn't have deep speed, but he's quick, prolific and has good hands. That, the lack of a pure slot receiver on the roster today and his blocking skills should get him tons of opportunities in 2015. He could be a core special teams player immediately.
Jarrett's height and weight are his only real weak points. Otherwise, he's an active, disruptive defender with the potential to be a force on the interior of the Falcons' line, and a well-balanced skill set that should make him a three down player if he develops the way I expect he will. Love this pick.
Rodgers is a project. He's big and athletic and probably projects as a guard over the long haul, but his 2015 impact will likely be minimal. He has a small chance of becoming a starter down the line, but if he tops out as a useful, versatile reserve, that'll be just fine.
The Falcons worked King out and clearly liked what they saw. He's a tall (6'3") safety with good range, legitimate speed and physicality. The team will groom him and hope those tools translate into real NFL success.
Your thoughts on this draft class?