The Falcons made a couple of big earlier moves this week. We started out with the news that Austin Hooper was headed for Cleveland, and that was admittedly a little difficult to swallow, at least for some of us. But the team acted quickly and traded for Hayden Hurst, who is tough to project but definitely has a solid ceiling. It was objectively easier to see Vic Beasley sign with the Titans. But again, in similar fashion, the Falcons got out there and signed Dante Fowler in relatively short order.
So what holes remain in the current roster? Here are my top 3:
The Falcons made the decision to let Devonta Freeman go a few days ago. Given that, Brian Hill, Ito Smith, Qadree Ollison, and Craig Reynolds are the only running backs on the roster. No disrespect to those players, but the Falcons really need to add a lead back to the mix. The Falcons have reportedly shown interest in Todd Gurley but his addition would be a high-risk proposition given his injury history.
The Falcons really only have a few remaining options if they’re going to fill this hole during free agency. Otherwise they may be forced to spend an early to mid round pick on Free’s long-term replacement.
The Falcons made what I think was head-scratching decision to walk away from Desmond Trufant earlier this week. He’s been designated a June 1st cut and the Falcons stand to gain about $11 million in cap space by parting ways with him before next season. Trufant wasn’t a top 10 cornerback anymore but he was still a perfectly capable CB1, and he intercepted 4 passes last season, notwithstanding his reputation was as a player with “bad hands.” So that said, can we adequately replace Trufant in 2020 for the $11 million they saved by cutting him?
Let’s acknowledge the elephant in the room: The Falcons are looking hit a home run and draft their CB1 of the future in the first round of the draft. That’s an ambitious approach and the Falcons are taking a big swing, but given their hot seats, Thomas Dimitroff and Dan Quinn don’t really have a choice, do they?
With the departure of De’Vondre Campbell, the Falcons are a little thin at linebacker. With Deion Jones and Foye Oluokun anchoring the unit, the Falcons need to make additions in both free agency and the draft sooner rather than later.
Underlying any concerns you may have about the state of the linebacker corps, don’t forget that the Falcons have the benefit of employing linebackers coach Jeff Ulbrich, who will also serve as the assistant head coach in 2020. Ulbrich was instrumental in getting the defense turned around during the second half of last season. He and defensive coordinator Raheem Morris will get have to get the most out of whatever linebackers the Falcons add between now and the beginning of the season.
What say you, Falcoholics? Is this your top 3? Discuss!