The draft is thankfully only a week away because we have churned through about 1,000 mock drafts with about 800 of them sending the Falcons K’Lavon Chaisson. Mocks are beating that dead horse.
Chaisson is the consensus selection. He is from a school Dan Quinn loves, he plays a premium position, and he is at a big position of need. It makes so much sense.
Too much sense. Every year we get a consensus mock draft pick for the Falcons and the Falcons pass on that player or narrowly miss out on that player. Outside of Sean Weatherspoon, the Falcons have never landed the favorite.
Let’s see if Mel Kiper’s 4.0 mock draft will help guarantee the Falcons do not draft Chaisson. Actually, there is no surprise. Chaisson to Atlanta. It will never happen. Here is what Kiper has to say about Chaisson this week.
I still look at Chaisson as the best value here because of the upside he brings as a versatile pass-rusher. After Chase Young, he’s the best edge rusher in this class.
Can he be a value there? Sure, if he can develop into a good pass rusher. However, Dan Quinn has yet to show he or the staff have an ability to do that with a project. Chaisson would also have a pretty limited impact as a rookie, being stuck as a backup defensive end, needing lots of development, and playing a position that takes a long time to adjust to the NFL.
Quinn and Thomas Dimitroff would need to feel very secure in their jobs to select Chaisson. Per Kiper’s mock, the Falcons miss out on CJ Henderson and take Chaisson over other linked players like Xavier McKinney, Javon Kinlaw, Jordan Love, and Antoine Winfield Jr.
The second round produces an interesting pick: Jeremy Chinn of Southern Illinois. Here is why Kiper likes the safety for Atlanta.
Keanu Neal, a first-round pick in 2016, has had some horrible injury luck and only played in four games over the last two seasons. That has opened a void at safety in Atlanta. Chinn, who had 13 career interceptions for the Salukis and looked great at Senior Bowl practices, ran a 4.45 40-yard dash at the combine, a fantastic time for a 221-pound defensive back. He’s legit.
This pick makes too much sense. Quinn loves big, fast safeties and has a desperate need for one. The Falcons have not had any decent backups despite nagging injuries limiting both Neal and Ricardo Allen.
Despite the improvements, the Falcons would still be dangerously short on talent at defensive tackle, linebacker, and corner.