Rumors for months suggested the Falcons would trade up to try to nab defensive tackle Ed Oliver. That didn’t happen despite his unexpected fall but the Falcons did attempt trading up after Oliver was drafted.
The perma-plugged-in Peter King had the play-by-play when the Denver Broncos went on the clock at 10th overall on Thursday night.
Denver had the Giants and Falcons on the phone during the trade with Pittsburgh. The Giants made a competitive offer, Elway said, but not as good at Pittsburgh’s … and the Steelers, by the way, stonewalled Elway when Denver pushed for a first-rounder in 2020.
The Steelers got uncharacteristically aggressive by trading their 1st, 2nd, and 2020 3rd round picks to trade up for speedy linebacker Devin Bush. The Giants ended up drafting Dexter Lawrence at 17.
Per King, the Falcons weren’t even in second place in bidding for pick 10. Assuming eventual 14th overall pick Chris Lindstrom was the team’s backup pick, Atlanta wanted to draft either Devin Bush, 11th overall pick Jonah Williams, 12th overall pick Rashan Gary, or 13th overall pick Christian Wilkins.
There were rumors days before the draft the Falcons were interested in Christian Wilkins, and a rumor, later called a smokescreen, the Falcons were trading up for Devin Bush. Williams was the top ranked offensive lineman and had experience at right tackle and guard.
All three would make sense but my guess is Christian Wilkins. After missing out on the top two defensive tackles in the draft, Atlanta had a chance at the last elite(ish) prospect in Wilkins. A short trade up would make sense if the Falcons planned on a more balanced draft with one new starter on each line.
The trade did not go through so the Falcons focused heavily on the offensive line. It is a little unconventional but it’s too early to know if it works out. With that said, assuming the prospect was either a defensive lineman or linebacker, look for the Falcons to continue looking at veterans and trade options.