Right now, we’ll take any morsel of information about the 2020 Falcons we can get. We’re especially into anything that explains the roles of new and returning players this coming season, given how critical the season is and how quiet things are on the team front right now.
That’s why I was positively delighted to see Dan Quinn address John Cominsky and Charles Harris and their likely roles in Atlanta in 2020. The short version is that Cominsky will be a versatile piece, used like Adrian Clayborn, Jack Crawford, and Derrick Shelby were in the past, while Harris will stick to defensive end as a rotational pass rusher.
Dan Quinn said John Cominsky will move inside and play DT in the nickel package. #Falcons— Kelsey Conway (@FalconsKelsey) May 12, 2020
Dan Quinn says they expect Charles Harris to be a part of their defensive line rotation this season, specifically at defensive end. #Falcons— William McFadden (@willmcfadden) May 12, 2020
This is great news for Cominsky in particular. The Falcons traded up to get him in the fourth round, indicating that they were hoping he could have a real role on the defensive line. He played just 100 snaps in 2020, but this year he’ll get work as a base defensive end and nickel defensive tackle, which should mean his role will increase by leaps and bounds. The big question is whether he’ll effectively start at either of those positions or not, and given the presence of Steven Means, Takk McKinley, and now Marlon Davidson, chances are good he’ll be rotating in.
Harris, meanwhile, will hopefully offer some pass rushing juice as a defensive end. The Falcons traded a 7th round pick in the hopes that he can resurrect his moribund career and offer some pass rushing punch they don’t currently have in abundance at the defensive end position. I’d imagine he’ll be limited to third down work in the early going, but if all goes well he might also carve out a larger role over time.
It’s obvious that both will be integral reserves. Dante Fowler and Davidson were the big ticket additions and starters on this line, but this defense rotates players along the line a ton, virtually guaranteeing Cominsky and Harris won’t be gathering dust on the bench. Let’s hope both are up to the task.