The Atlanta Falcons are going to lose one of their best free agents to the Buffalo Bills, it appears. Patrick DiMarco is headed out on a four year deal.
Source: The #Bills are bringing in FB Patrick DiMarco formerly of the #Falcons. It’s a 4-year deal worth $8.5M. More than $4M guaranteed.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 8, 2017
Keep in mind that this won’t be official until tomorrow at 4 p.m. or later, which means the Falcons can still make a last ditch effort to keep him. I wouldn’t bet on that outcome, however.
DiMarco has been the best blocking fullback in the NFL over the last two seasons, full stop, and a perfect fit for Kyle Shanahan’s ambitious, potent offense. Alongside one of the NFL’s best offensive lines, DiMarco was a key reason why Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman had so much success whenever he was on the field. Now he’ll join an intriguing offense in Buffalo, paving the way for LeSean McCoy, while the Falcons will have to explore other, likely cheaper options.
This is very likely a case of a team just offering more money (and possibly more years) than the Falcons were willing to spend on the fullback position. It’s justifiable not to want to spend big on the position—even for a player as good as DiMarco—but it still stinks to lose out on a Pro Bowl-caliber player
Look for the Falcons to poke around Mike Tolbert (an adequate blocker and decent rusher), Kyle Juszcyzk (one of the league’s more versatile options), and failing that, the scrapheap. The loss of DiMarco isn’t going to derail this offense, but it is going to make life a little more difficult for Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman, and that’s a crying shame.
We’ll miss you, DiMarco. Good luck in Buffalo...until the Buffalo game this year.