Thomas Dimitroff is not quite as visible and talkative an exec as he once was, but when he is interviewed, he tends to give some worthwhile glimpses at where the team is going to focus their attention. Just never believe him if he says the team is going to trade down in the first round, of course.
That’s why I wanted to take some time on an otherwise quiet Saturday to chew through a few worthwhile Dimitroff quotes from his interview on 92.9 The Game earlier this week. Let’s do that now.
I don’t know Dimitroff’s precise level of involvement in Koetter’s hiring, but I’m willing to bet he was a factor. Dimitroff saw Koetter drag a halfway decent offense out of a team without Julio Jones and with one of the worst offensive lines ever assembled back in 2013, and like Matt Ryan, he knows and is comfortable with the once-and-future play caller. The discipline quote is particularly interesting because the Falcons have averaged a little over 100 penalties with Kyle Shanahan and Steve Sarkisian at the helm, while under Koetter they had a frankly incredible 55, 91, and 97 penalties in three seasons. Mike Smith was known for running more disciplined teams in general, but perhaps the return of Koetter and Mike Mularkey may well help in that regard.
But we’ve got plenty of time to talk about Koetter, of course, What did Dimitroff have to say about the roster?
It’s interesting to hear Dimitroff openly acknowledge that positional needs are a big deal to the Falcons, what with all the hay made of BPA in past years. The Falcons have big, obvious holes and can’t be dancing around them, and I certainly hope they focus their free agency and draft energies on the lines.
And then there’s cornerback, which should be one of the most interesting positions to watch in the months ahead. Robert Alford was bad throughout much of 2018 and could find himself looking for a new team, Isaiah Oliver may or may not be ready for primetime, and Desmond Trufant and Brian Poole are the only other options under contract. I don’t think it should be a first round priority for Atlanta—they really need help in the trenches—but it sounsd like it may happen on the second day.