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NFL roster cuts: Jake Long an option for Falcons, who may shop for line help

Long is one of a couple of offensive linemen worth considering.

Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

I'm a bit of an offensive line fatalist. The Falcons were never going to have a great unit in 2015, but they can certainly at least put a decent one on the field, and a decent one would be A) better than what they've had over the last couple of seasons and B) enough to keep the offense humming along at a strong clip.

At this point, you're not really looking to add new starting options to the mix, or at least not Week 1 starting options. Jake Matthews and Ryan Schraeder should be fine at tackle, Chris Chester is going to start at one of the guard spots, and James Stone looks to be heading for the starting gig at left guard, and Joe Hawley will be at center assuming he's not too sore to be an asset there. This is a line that is probably better than it looked against the Dolphins, for what it's worth.

We can debate whether the Falcons should have signed Evan Mathis—we have no idea how hard they tried and/or whether Mathis was interested in joining the team—but this is where they're at right now. It's telling that Dan Quinn is not ruling out signing oft-injured tackle Jake Long, who we'll get to in a minute.

There's no reason for this team to stand pat when it comes to depth, where Jon Asamoah is the only proven, quality option if injuries strike. Right now things are relatively thin in the marketplace, but here's a couple of potential options.

Jake Long

Jake Rodgers and Pierce Burton have looked fine at tackle, but the staff may be leery about going with a pair of unproven players behind Jake Matthews and Ryan Schraeder early in the season. If he's healthy, Long is a quality veteran backup, though I get the sense he might be resistant to sitting on the bench.

Of course, with Jake Matthews suffering from a back strain and Ryan Schraeder among the culprits in the Falcons' poor line play against Miami, it's possible Long could get reps in Atlanta. Keep an eye on him.

Donald Thomas

A zone-blocking fit, Thomas was considered one of the better young guards available when the Colts signed him to a multi-year deal. He promptly got injured in 2013 and 2014, playing just two games in Indianapolis, and was summarily released today. Assuming he's healthy, Thomas is a worthy flier who would give the team better-than-average backup options at both guard spots.

I'm not diving in on all the names available because there aren't a ton of great options, as you might imagine, but Long and Thomas make sense from a fit perspective. More help may become available after this weekend's cuts, but there are no guarantees in an NFL where many teams "boast" lousy lines.

Who do you have your eyes on?