The Falcons are out of the playoff race after yet another unwatchable loss. There is not much to prove in this failed season. It would be great if the Falcons were fun to watch or if we could get actual film on unknowns like Deadrin Senat and Qadree Ollison but neither look likely to occur. Best case scenario is the players stay healthy and fans can look toward the draft.
Of course, looking toward the draft too early can lead to a lot of disappointment. In November of last season, the Falcons were technically in the running for Chase Young at 2nd overall. A strong finish dropped the Falcons to picking 16th overall where they luckily selected the (so far) top performing corner of the draft.
Per Tankathon, a website dedicated to updating draft orders, the Falcons move into the top 10 with Sunday’s loss and will pick 8th overall if the season ended today. The Falcons have only cracked into the top 10 twice since drafting Matt Ryan, selecting Jake Matthews at 6th overall in 2014 and Vic Beasley at 8th overall in 2015, except for trading up to 6th overall for Julio Jones in 2011.
Suffice it to say, the Falcons have the chance to add a potential Pro Bowl player at a premium position with the pick. It is tough to project who that player could be as draft boards are still being set and we do not know who will be the team’s new head coach or general manager.
Players generally in that range are believed to include quarterbacks like Zach Wilson and Trey Lance and defensive linemen like Gregory Rousseau, Kwity Paye, Christian Barmore, Carlos Basham and Aidan Hutchinson. The bad news is the Falcons are almost certainly out of range for the draft’s two top quarterbacks, if the new braintrust is looking for a full rebuild.
The Falcons have the Kansas City Chiefs, the Los Angeles Chargers, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers twice remaining on the schedule. If the Falcons play like they did against the New Orleans Saints, they may only have one more win in them against the struggling Chargers. The Chargers also are currently projected to have the 4th overall pick, something that would change if the Falcons lose in that matchup.