We all know how good these Atlanta Falcons can be, and a big part of the reason they’re so dangerous is their speed and physicality as a team. Players like Deion Jones, Taylor Gabriel, Tevin Coleman and Robert Alford are insanely fast, while De’Vondre Campbell, Julio Jones, and Keanu Neal are just plain freak athletes.
Did you realize just how athletic the Falcons were, though? After reading this tweet from Kent Lee Platte, a stats guru for our sister site Pride of Detroit, you will.
The #Falcons ranked 1st in % of players with a Relative Athletic Score over 8.00 (Elite athleticism) with 44.44%. They ranked 15th for lowest % of players under 5.00 (below avg athleticism) with only 25.93%, meaning 74.07% of their players are above average athletes per #RAS.— Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) November 14, 2017
This ranking not only is phenomenal and speaks volumes to what the Falcons have done molding their team, but it also puts Atlanta in fine company. Seattle is #3 on this list, the Patriots are fifth, the Packers are 7th, and the Chiefs are 9th here, alongside weird seeming outliers like the Jets (6th!) and the Browns (8th!), and far removed from the Rams and Jaguars, who are near the bottom of the pile. While your percentage of elite athletes and even above average ones clearly doesn’t directly correlate with great results, it does point to a smart roster building philosophy, methinks. Just don’t ask me to explain the RAS metric to you in detail.
The trick for Atlanta is going to be keeping the band together going forward, and continuing to add tremendous athletes and football players to this roster. After a draft class that saw them bring in the excellent Takk McKinley, speedy Duke Riley, and promising hyper-athletic tight end Eric Saubert, they look like they’re on track to keep it going.