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Draft results 2017: Falcons select TE Eric Saubert with final fifth round pick

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The Drake tight end will contribute chiefly as a backup and special teamer to start his career.

NFL: Combine Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Barring a trade back in using future assets, the Atlanta Falcons are done with their 2017 draft class. They capped things off with Drake tight end Eric Saubert, who should compete for a role right away, albeit a limited one.

Saubert is an interesting pick this late. He has a ton of upside as a receiver and is a tremendous athlete for his position, but scouts criticize his effort as a blocker, and simply don’t like his hands. He drops too many catchable balls and needs to work on his route running, but certainly the talent is there for those issues to go away with time, patience, and a lot of work on Saubert’s part.

If Saubert responds well to coaching and fixes the drops issue, he could wind up being a steal for Atlanta, an excellent complement to Austin Hooper in two tight end sets, and one of the team’s biggest red zone threats. Those are all big ifs at the moment, though, so for now we’ll just wait and see if Saubert can push for playing time ahead of Levine Toilolo and Josh Perkins. He’s probably never going to be an elite blocker, which leaves Toilolo and the improving Hooper to get on the field on obvious running downs.

Welcome to Atlanta, Eric Saubert!

Poll

How would you grade the selection of Eric Saubert?

This poll is closed

  • 8%
    A
    (101 votes)
  • 25%
    B
    (288 votes)
  • 35%
    C
    (404 votes)
  • 18%
    D
    (211 votes)
  • 11%
    F
    (133 votes)
1137 votes total Vote Now

Falcons Selections

Round 1, #31: Takkarist McKinley, DE, UCLA

Round 3, #75: Duke Riley, LB, LSU

Round 4, #135: Sean Harlow, OL, Oregon State

Round 5, #149: Damontae Kazee, CB, San Diego State

Round 5, #156: Brian Hill, RB, Wyoming

Round 5, #175: Eric Saubert, TE, Drake

Top Remaining Needs

  1. Tackle
  2. Defensive Tackle