We’re mere hours away from the start of yet another NFL Draft, with the trading rumors for the Atlanta Falcons aflutter as aggressively as they’ve ever been.
The latest of these comes from CBS Sports’ Jonathan Jones and carries the rumor/news that the Falcons and Cleveland Browns are two teams hot to trot to swap picks, and the eventual target could surprise you.
By the way, the talk of the Falcons wanting into the top 5 is very real. They love the defenders in this year’s draft, but teams so far aren’t loving falling back to 16 to make a deal with Atlanta. The Falcons could make a deal with the Cardinals at No. 8, but sources around the league tell me Cleveland could be the move at No. 10. That may not be high enough for Atlanta to get C.J. Henderson, but K’Lavon Chaisson could be the pick if they get there.
Trading up for Chaisson, a pass rusher many of us assume will be in play at Pick 16, would be a bit of a shocker. But if the team was that aggressive in trying to get Chase Young (a move Jones says is probably not going to happen, with Washington settling in on the elite prospect), could pass rusher have secretly be the target all along for Thomas Dimitroff and Dan Quinn?
Chaisson will need some time to get used to the NFL, but he’s got a high ceiling and all the intangibles the team loves in a rusher. Read our Eric Robinson’s scouting report on the LSU pass rusher to get a better idea of what the team could be getting if this came to be.
Perhaps it’s Henderson and the smoke has been legitimate all along, but he could go earlier, as Jones notes. This would leave cornerback a place to be zeroed in on later in the draft or in free agency. Also, what if the target is DT Javon Kinlaw, as has been rumored around this range?
So keep your minds open and heads on a swivel for draft night and what the Falcons could do. There seem to be many possibilities, and we’ll be as eager as you are to see what TD has up his sleeve for the team’s first-round pick. Maybe this is the last rumor we’ll hear today.