Atlanta Falcons defensive back Damontae Kazee has come a long way over the past eighteen months. After being drafted 149th overall in the 2017 NFL Draft, Kazee probably felt like he had something to prove. His 17 interceptions at San Diego State were meaningless; he was on the back end of the Falcons depth chart, with nowhere to go but up.
It didn’t stay that way for long. Kazee successfully transitioned to safety and held up well during his rookie year. It looked like his path to a bigger role was clear heading into 2018. But then the Falcons drafted Isaiah Oliver and signed veteran safety Ron Parker. That would’ve discouraged a lot of lesser football players. But not Kazee, not him. Now in year two and halfway through the preseason, Kazee is generating a lot of chatter. According to Pro Football Focus, Kazee isn’t just having a solid preseason. Among cornerbacks, he’s having the best preseason.
Kazee has the versatility to find a role in Dan Quinn’s defense this season. He’s forcing their hand, in a sense, because he’s proving to be too good to keep on the sideline. No matter what role Kazee occupies going forward, the Falcons will find it hard to relegate him to the sideline. He’s just too darn good.