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O'Brien Schofield doesn't believe he'll be back with the Falcons

The free agent had been negotiating with Atlanta, but realizes things have changed with the Falcons signing multiple defensive ends.

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

O'Brien Schofield was a valuable player and veteran voice for Atlanta in 2015, but it doesn't look like he'll be coming back for 2016, after all.

Schofield can play both linebacker and end, but the Falcons have already signed Derrick Shelby and Adrian Clayborn, and may be soon adding Chris Long at end, so his role would likely be confined to linebacker if he returns. Schofield was not a big-time special teamer a year ago, and with the Falcons figuring to prioritize linebacker in the draft, it looks like he's on his way elsewhere.

It's a shame because Schofield was, by all accounts, a terrific teammate, and he can be a useful reserve even for a team adding talent on defense. He and longtime Falcon Kroy Biermann are victims of Dan Quinn having another offseason to upgrade the talent base and bring in players he feels are better fits for the defense, and while it's unfortunate for both and upsetting for fans who like them, we'll all hope it results in a better defense.

We wish him well, wherever he lands.