Eddie Goldman has seemed like a logical signing for this Falcons team for a while now, and we suggested him as a candidate to join the team several times this spring. With the Falcons needing to add experience and upgrades to their defensive line, and with Goldman’s ties to former Bears general manager Ryan Pace, it was hard to imagine Atlanta going the summer without at least checking into Goldman.
We don’t have to imagine or just idly connect the dots anymore, because Goldman has reportedly signed with the Falcons. He’ll have a chance to make his mark for a defensive line that does have talent, but has more question marks than strengths at this point.
Breaking: Eddie Goldman to the #Falcons on a one-year deal, per source. Nice defensive pickup for Atlanta.— Jordan Schultz (@Schultz_Report) July 6, 2022
In the team’s announcement, we learned the corresponding cut was rookie undrafted free agent safety Brad Hawkins, a player who appeared to have some real promise. We’ll wish him well wherever he lands, and we’ll now be looking at a very slim safety competition with Teez Tabor and Tre Webb likely fighting over one spot.
Goldman is coming off arguably the worst season of his career, but he has a long track record of quality play at nose tackle and was an effective run stopper as recently as a couple of years ago. He’s a strong, durable defender who can create pressure and remains a bear (I’m sorry) for offensive linemen stuck trying to open lanes for running backs against him. Obviously the fact that Pace knew him well probably worked in his favor, but it’s not hard to understand why the Falcons would think he would be a good fit in Atlanta.
Now there’s actually quite a bit of competition for depth roles on the interior of the defensive line, where only Grady Jarrett and Ta’Quon Graham figure to be locked into roles. Goldman will be pushing hard to join them—and likely will—with Marlon Davidson, Vincent Taylor, Jalen Dalton, Anthony Rush, and others in the mix.
Given that he’s just 28 years old and will have plenty of opportunity awaiting him in Atlanta, he’s a nice bounceback candidate for a defense looking for a wider bounceback of its own. Goldman will be competing for a role this summer, but I like his chances of making the roster and earning a regular rotational role. It’ll be interesting to see who the Falcons carry on their line with Goldman’s addition.
Give him a warm welcome to Atlanta, if you would.