Besides Julio Jones, there may be no more explosive weapon on the Falcons offense than Taylor Gabriel. The fourth year receiver showed that the Browns made a colossal mistake when they cut him. His speed and dynamic cutting ability made him a nightmare for defensive coordinators last year. Barring any injuries, there’s no reason to think Gabriel can’t have another impressive season with the Falcons.
He hasn’t been in the league that long, so let’s take a look at what Gabriel did with the Falcons last year.
2016 - 13 games, 6 TDs
Our target number
This is tough, but we’re going to set the target number to 6.5 touchdowns.
Why he’ll go under
As good as Gabriel is, he’s not the kind of receiver that prospers in traffic. Many of his touchdowns came on “home run” plays that started outside of the red zone. Those types of touchdowns are hard to keep up at a consistent pace. Additionally, he’s arguably not even the 3rd receiver on the team (Julio, Sanu and Devonta are all ahead of him) so his opportunities will still be relatively limited.
Why he’ll go over
Simply put, Gabriel is a true home run threat every time he touches the ball. His top-tier speed and elusiveness gives him the ability to turn simple plays into explosive ones. Matt Ryan also showed that he’s willing to look Gabriel’s way, so with Julio taking up double-teams all day, Gabriel is likely going to see many favorable match-ups whenever he’s on the field.
Over/Under: 6.5 touchdowns for Taylor Gabriel
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