Free agency is officially open, and the Atlanta Falcons have already made a couple of moves to solidify their offensive line for the next couple of seasons. The team still has some loose change in its pockets should they decide to add another piece or two, but all is quiet thus far heading into today. Read on for Falcoholinks for your Thursday.
The Falcons kicked off Tuesday morning by restructuring Matt Ryan’s contract, allowing the team some needed flexibility to proactive in the free agent period.
With their first couple of free agency acquisitions, the Falcons brought in a couple of veteran guards to beef up the offensive line: Jamon Brown and James Carpenter. These are a couple of bulky fellows that should afford Matt Ryan some solid pass protection, but also may signal a shift away from Atlanta’s outside zone scheme.
For an in-depth look at both of the Falcons’ new offensive guards, give a read to Eric Robinson’s write-up.
On the heels of adding two new bodies to the offensive line, the Falcons released Ryan Schraeder yesterday. Schraeder had been a stalwart starter along Atlanta’s offensive front for the past few seasons, but inexplicably fell off a cliff performance-wise in 2018. Schraeder will be designated as a post-June 1st cut, freeing up $6.45 million in available cap space.
Ryan Schraeder’s release is unsurprisingly considering the contract the Falcons handed out to swing-tackle-turned-presumptive-starter Ty Sambrailo.
The first couple of days of “legal tampering” (my favorite official title for a league-wide time period) brought forth a few absolutely bonkers contracts. Seriously. It was like cash was falling down to Terra from the Warp. A few of these deals will have obvious effects in the Falcons’ efforts to lock down their prime talent — specifically Deion Jones and Julio Jones.
Kwon Alexander — and C.J. Mosley, a bit later on — signed massive deals, and those will obviously factor into the equation when inking Deion Jones long-term.
In a similar vein, Vic Beasley’s 2019 pay became official at the start of the new league year yesterday, and the recent contract signed by Los Angeles Rams pass-rusher Dante Fowler actually makes it seem not that bad.
The Falcoholic Podcast
This week, David Walker and Jeanna Thomas are joined by Falcoholic writer and analyst Allen Strk to discuss the moves the Falcons have made thus far in the offseason. On the docket are the various departures and arrivals we’ve seen, as well as the contract situations of Vic Beasley, Grady Jarrett, and Deion Jones. Give the latest episode a listen right here.