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Terry Fontenot and Arthur Smith hold press conference, reveal nothing

You thought they’d give it all away in the final hours before the draft? They’re not supervillains.

Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Atlanta Falcons are mysterious right now. They’ve cultivated the sense that they might do anything with their first round selection, the exact sort of unpredictability that makes teams a little nervous and drives fans a little nuts, and they’ll be eager to keep that aura of endless possibility humming until they ultimately make a selection or a trade.

It’s no surprise, then, that a final pre-draft press conference on Wednesday featuring Terry Fontenot and Arthur Smith gave us exactly zero new information. It was interesting, of course, but when you lean back and look at what was said, there’s absolutely no way to strengthen your particular deeply-held convictions about the draft. Let’s review.

Julio Jones may be a Falcon or he may not. The team would listen to the right offer because they’re in deep cap trouble, but it has to be the right offer.

You can tell it pained Fontenot to have to re-structure deals this offseason just to get moves done, and that it won’t necessarily be something the team does often after wrestling the cap back into shape.

Atlanta’s open to a deal if it’s the right deal, which would probably involve multiple first round picks. The asking price remains high, as it should be, and a deal is unlikely to materialize until draft night. Hell, it’s probably unlikely to materialize at all, given that it’s not worth passing up on a killer talent like Kyle Pitts or Justin Fields for a so-so return.

There’s only one quarterback on the roster, so...surprise! It’s still noteworthy that the Falcons didn’t make any kind of move to add a veteran, so my standing expectation remains that they do add on in the next few days. As Rothstein notes, the big question remains when.

This goes without saying, but it doesn’t decrease the urgency one bit. Atlanta has too many holes on the roster today, both starters and depth, to fritter away a bunch of Day 3 picks on players who don’t contribute. Actually getting the right guys is another matter entirely, but it’s the right mindset.


Atlanta’s done a good job of muddling and disguising their intentions this entire time, so it’s no great surprise they didn’t come out and announce their plans on the eve of the draft. What is clear is that regardless of what happens at No. 4, the Falcons are in the early stages of sorting a difficult cap situation and trying to build a winner out of the ashes of what the previous regime left. None of that is a surprise, but all of it is important.