This is rumor season, what with the start of legal tampering and players being released into the wilds of free agency. That’s how you get a rumor like this one.
The Chargers released former first round draft choice D.J. Fluker, and his draft pedigree alone ensured he would get a look from several teams as either a tackle or a guard. I just didn’t expect the Falcons to be one of those teams.
Potential teams to watch in the OL D.J. Fluker market: #Saints #Lions #Seahawks #Colts #Vikings #Giants, #ARZ, #ATL based on a recent call.— Josina Anderson (@JosinaAnderson) March 7, 2017
Why it makes sense
Fluker is a guard more than he is a tackle, based on his ability, and the Falcons are certainly in the market for guards. He’s also got a first round pedigree and flashes of strong play over the years, so Atlanta might think they can plug him in as a veteran swing tackle or reserve guard and perhaps get starting-caliber play out him down the line. He doesn’t lack strength, if nothing else.
Signing him to be available as a backup at a handful of spots along the offensive line is probably the only scenario that makes sense here, and for that, it’d be hard to argue against a flier.
Why it doesn’t make sense
Literally every other reason.
Fluker can safely be called a first round bust to this point. He’s 340 pound and not particularly nimble, which would seem to make him a poor fit for the team’s blocking scheme. And it’s not immediately clear that even if he did sign and play guard that he’d be a tangible upgrade over the likes of Wes Schweitzer, much less Chris Chester. The only scenario in which his signing makes sense is if he’s set to be a reserve, as I mentioned, but I think the Falcons can find better fits on the market.
If the reported interest is genuine, then Fluker is legitimately in play, no matter how badly I may want him to head elsewhere. I still don’t think he winds up with the Falcons, but there’s that but. Call it a coin toss.