After the departure of Foyesade Oluokun in free agency, the Atlanta Falcons were a bit shorthanded at linebacker—particularly with the long-term status of Deion Jones in question. Aside from Jones, who could be traded for cap savings post-June 1st, Atlanta returned just Mykal Walker and former UDFA Dorian Etheridge from the 2021 season.
The Falcons addressed that roster hole by adding a veteran to their linebacker corps on Monday afternoon, signing former first-round pick Rashaan Evans to a one-year deal. Evans had visited with Atlanta last week, and it seems the two sides have now reached agreement. ESPN’s Adam Schefter broke the news first.
Former Titans’ first-round pick, linebacker Rashaan Evans, reached agreement on a one-year deal with the Atlanta Falcons, per his agents @DrewJRosenhaus and @RyanMatha. Evans now will be reunited with Falcons’ HC Arthur Smith and DC Dean Pees, who coached him in Tennessee.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 4, 2022
Rashaan Evans was drafted with pick 22 in the 2018 NFL Draft by the Tennessee Titans. Although Evans started 50 games for the Titans over the past four seasons, he never quite lived up to the hype of his first-round selection. He was still a productive player, however, with 57 total tackles (35 solo), 3.0 TFL, 1 FF, 2 PD, and 2 INT in 11 starts during the 2021 season. Evans had his best season in 2019, starting all 16 games and putting up 111 total tackles (69 solo), 0.0 TFL, and 2.5 sacks.
Evans is an obvious fit for Dean Pees’ defense, as he played under him in Tennessee from 2018-2019. At 6’2, 232, Evans adds size, physicality, and plenty of starting experience to the linebacker group. He figures to compete with third-year player Mykal Walker for the starting job opposite Deion Jones this offseason, and would almost certainly be in line to start should Jones end up traded after June 1st.
After the signing of Evans, the Falcons linebacker depth chart looks something like this:
Joining us in welcoming Rashaan Evans to Atlanta.