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Will the Falcons look for a developmental quarterback late in this draft?

We have to be careful about reading too much into draft visits, but there’s some smoke.

Memphis v Houston Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

One of the great mysteries of the offseason—which has featured the Falcons cutting salary so they Derrick Shelby?—has been the fact that Matt Schaub is still here at his current salary. Schaub is a great locker room presence and a likely future coach, but he hasn’t thrown more touchdowns than interceptions in a season since 2012, and he last started more than two games in 2013. His experience might make him a better quarterback option than a rookie draft pick, but it’s not 100% clear that’s true at this stage of his career, and he’s carrying a cap charge north of $4 million.

The Falcons haven’t shown any signs of cutting ties with Schaub, but we’re up to at least three visits and workouts with draft-eligible quarterbacks in this year’s class. Per multiple sources we’ve embedded in our draft tracker, the Falcons have taken a look at Memphis QB Riley Ferguson (who could go early on the third day), South Florida QB Quinton Flowers (a late rounder or UDFA), and Florida International QB Alex McGough (a likely UDFA). We may well hear more names over the next month, as well.

None of those players would figure to be an upgrade on Schaub this year, which raises the possibility that the Falcons could keep a third developmental quarterback for a season while Schaub carries the clipboard, and then that same player could back up Ryan in 2019. The Falcons, after all, don’t believe they have a lot of holes, and may well be inclined to use a late round pick on a player they think has the upside to be a long-term backup. They do need that player, arguably, and may be well served by expending their final pick of the draft to get one.

Unless the team has a veteran in mind, though, it looks like they’ll go with the option they know behind Ryan, making this more of a long-term bit of intrigue. Don’t be surprised if Schaub is still here in September, despite his price tag.