As of this exact moment, the Falcons may now legally tamper with impending free agents. That means they can start negotiating contracts and getting things in place for Wednesday at 4 p.m., which gives teams a leg up over the olden days, when they would illegally tamper in the days and hours leading up to free agency and pretend they weren’t doing so.
If we know anything about the Falcons, it’s that they’re big fans of nailing down their one or two priority signings right away and then letting their cap space loosen up and/or the market settle before going after further additions. This year, their money is so limited that those free agents aren’t likely to be big names, but the Falcons are still likely to want to use their limited funds to land their top targets here in the early going.
The Falcons head into free agency with just north of $6 million, which means a single mid-tier free agent could wipe out their cap space immediately. They could afford to land a couple of guys who take up $2-$2.5 million in the here and now, but if they want to do more than that, it’s going to be imperative that they cut salary or get Grady Jarrett and/or Julio Jones settled between now and Thursday. We may see a cut, but the rest doesn’t seem likely.
Look for the Falcons to go after some of their rumored OL targets, like Kevin Pamphile and JR Sweezy, and build up depth along their defensive line in the early going. If all goes well, we’ll hear a little more concrete information between now and Wednesday, and we’ll hope the Falcons come out of the first wave a little stronger in the trenches, regardless of how cheap those signings wind up being.