The Falcons were linked to Bruce Irvin before the 2015 season even started, and perhaps there's an alternate dimension somewhere where he'll be in Atlanta next year. In this one, though, he'll be in Oakland.
Once we heard that Irvin's price tag would be around $9 million, I figured the Falcons were probably out of the running, and if the salary ends up in that neighborhood, that will certainly be why. The Raiders, after all, have a ton of money to burn, and a promising young team that Irvin will be a valuable piece for. It's a good fit for him, and despite his fondness for Atlanta and Dan Quinn, it probably would've taken a blockbuster offer to get him here.
It's a shame Irvin won't be here, because he's a good athlete, a fine all-around player, and he would have been one of the most capable pass rushers on the Falcons right away. This isn't, however, the kind of missed signing that will torpedo Atlanta if they land a quality linebacker in the draft or later in free agency, especially for the money Irvin probably got.
We're close to real free agency, folks.