The Atlanta Falcons have very few holes heading into the 2018 season, unlike most other years in the franchise’s history. You can advocate for a new starter at guard, a new one at defensive tackle, and certainly more depth. What you can’t argue is that this roster needs an overhaul, and I’m very thankful for that.
The Falcons are confident in their roster, as you’d guess, and won’t be looking for several immediate starters. They do want to address those remaining weaknesses, however, and this relatively deep class offers some real opportunity in that regard.
The focus, of course, will be on the trenches.
“I think they will be a really interesting group along the offensive line,” Dimitroff said. “We say that every year. We want to see the offensive line be a good full group as well as the defensive line. I think both of those areas are rich with talent. Not only early talent, I’m talking mid-round talent, so that’s good.”
There’s a sharp division in the fanbase about whether the Falcons will go for the offensive or defensive line first, one that will only be resolved when we actually get to the draft. But it’s obvious Atlanta will go for both, likely in the first three rounds, and perhaps multiple time each. The Falcons need to add a long-term option along the interior offensive line with Andy Levitre reaching free agent next year and Alex Mack getting older, to say nothing of the possibility of replacing Wes Schweitzer at right guard.
Still, I suspect the defensive line will get more attention. The Falcons may need to replace Adrian Clayborn and Dontari Poe, and the defensive tackle position is one of the weakest on the roster behind Grady Jarrett. This is a team that never seems totally satisfied with their defensive line to begin with, and since it’s one of the few holes remaining, it will get attention.
We’ll get a better idea of the team’s targets once the Combine kicks off, but for now, look for linemen who are “light on their feet” as Dimitroff suggests in the article linked above, and most importantly of all, look at linemen. The Falcons will have some new and interesting ones in just a couple of months.