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Falcons free agency: Cuts like Earl Mitchell are worth watching for Atlanta

The Falcons need to fill out their roster with useful veterans, and Earl Mitchell could be one of them.

NFL: Preseason-Atlanta Falcons at Miami Dolphins Andrew Innerarity-USA TODAY Sports

Earl Mitchell would be no one’s idea of a splash signing, if the Atlanta Falcons picked him up. For a team that has used free agency to build useful depth, though, he might be a logical signing.

The once well-regarded Mitchell has had two consecutive quiet years in Miami before earning his release yesterday, playing in just 21 games over the last couple of seasons. He’s never been much of a pass rusher even if he can bring it on occasion—his 5.5 career sacks tell that story pretty well—but he’s always been a solid run defender. If the Falcons part ways with Jonathan Babineaux and are considering kicking Tyson Jackson to the curb, they’ll need players like Mitchell to fill out the back end of the defensive tackle rotation. The 29-year-old would likely come on a budget-friendly deal and would make sense as the fourth DT on the roster, because we’re assuming the Falcons are going to do a lot of work at the position.

There will be more Earl Mitchells released, in the form of useful, cheap players at positions of need for Atlanta. You should absolutely monitor them as the Falcons say goodbye to familiar faces and fill out their roster with new ones. One of those Earl MItchells might even be Earl Mitchell.