Defensive Line: B
Atlanta has really strived to make the best pass rush that they have so desperately need since the departure of John Abraham. They needed a presence not only from an edge rushing linebacker, but also one opposite of Beasley. The Falcons certainly did address the situation by bringing a young DE to play opposite of Beasley who is coming off a four sack season. Keep in mind he played with a torn labrum, and was only his first season in the league.
Dan Quinn has looked into signing former Patriot Dominique Easley who was a first round pick in 2014. Easley who has been plagued by injury still has a lot talent that just needs to be reeled in by a defensive genius. If Quinn can work wonders with a Falcons pass rush that was the worst last season in sacks and still led us to a 5-0 start then I think he’s the man for the job. There’s just a question of whether Easley can be worth our time, but more importantly our money. He’s 24 and he could be mentored by Adrian Clayborn who has been seen to many as a natural leader for the Falcons. If Clayborn and Quinn can harness his talent and if he can stay healthy then I think Easley’s career will be restarted. More importantly we can get him for a cheap deal and utilize him as the perfect pawn to set all the pieces up for the Falcon’s success.
Next year should be a good year for him as well as for newly acquired Derrick Shelby who is entering his fifth season. He formally was a Dolphin and is coming off his most productive season with only eight starts he produced 3 and a half sacks, one interception, and two forced fumbles. His future looks bright as he looks to be the key to unlocking the potential for the Falcons pass rush. Well….that and a edge rushing linebacker. Thomas Dimitroff tried to address that hole….well NEED really.
He drafted Deion Jones in the second round and De’Vondre Campbell in the fourth round of the 2016 draft. De’Vondre is a LB from Minnesota who is also a hybrid safetyand Defensive End. He can start on the ground as he has 232 pounds of sheer force. Campbell specializes in having the ability to drop back into coverage almost as quick as he jumps on the line to get to the Quarterback. Quinn will be sure to use his sheer athleticism as a chess piece and hopefully mold him into a long time starter who will play adjacent of Brooks Reed.
Meanwhile Deion Jones is a fast and physical linebacker from LSU. He is 222 pounds of sheer aggression and can tear the opponent’s offensive line in a matter of minutes. His only problem is that he needs to be fit into a specific scheme, so for now we can call him a huge upgrade on the edge to come and sack the QB. Jones is coming in with intensity that he wants to play. Not that he’s gonna back up Spoon or Worrilow which is a breath of fresh air to have someone so proud to be a Falcon in such little time.