BY BUCK BELUE
680 THE FAN, ATLANTA – Both T and Q understand the New Deal in the upcoming Falcons NFL Draft. Mr. B has probably already communicated the message: you better Nail it! Or else… both of you might be exiting Base Camp.
Right now, the Falcons team needs: 1- an Impact Defensive Lineman, 2- a Difference-Maker at Linebacker, 3- a Highly-Skilled Cornerback, 4- a Polished Left Guard, 5- a Competent 3rd WR, and 6- a Running Back of the Future. They currently have 6 selections. So, T & Q need to Nail It!
Heck, I’d be pleased to see them add 3 quality players. My confidence is not at a high point right now, obviously. So, if T & Q could hit on 3 of the 6 picks, I’d be both surprised and pleased.
A couple weeks out, I’m concerned about the big decision in the 1st round. Pick 16. This selection has got to be Nailed.
Judging from the many Mock Drafts circulating, I’ve attempted to narrow the focus down to 10 players, as far as Pick 16 goes. Now, I don’t have the Medicals on these 10 players, but you Can’t Hide Talent, right?
Time to Drop “The Falcons Top 10.”
DL Javon Kinlaw. The Falcons need a legit DT to put next to Grady Jarrett. Derrick Brown is gone by the 16th pick. Kinlaw reminds me of future NFL Hall of Famer & Bulldog legend Richard Seymour. Javon is a 3-down player, who plays the run and the pass tough. Looks to be a good fit with The Brotherhood! If he is there at 16, T needs to take him.
DL Derrick Brown. He’s off the board at 16…but if for some reason he’s falling, T needs to grab him, unless Kinlaw is gone. Brown is a beast.
CB Kristian Fulton. The LSU cornerback is 1- Impressive playing off-zone coverage, 2- Balls out playing man coverage, 3- Can & will tackle, and 4- has a ton of experience against quality competition (think of all the reps against the LSU WR’s…Jefferson, Chase & Marshall). I value his versatility over the other CB’s (other than Jeff Okudah who will be off the board). I like this guy.
CB CJ Henderson. Dude can play press man, but our Falcons are a Cover-3 Zone team. So, I don’t like the fit. Plus, this guy doesn’t tackle…Maybe the next coach will play man.
CB Trevon Diggs. The Alabama corner is rough around the edges and needs polishing up, but you’ve got to like the talent.
CB AJ Terrell. This Tiger from Clemson looks impressive running around, but he got torched in the Natty. That concerns me.
Edge Rusher K’Lavon Chaisson. Dude came on strong at the season’s end, which was key to LSU’s run for a title. Is he the N-B-T? The Next Big Thing might end up being the next Vic Beasley or Takk McKinley, which would not be good.
LB Kenneth Murray. Q could easily Plug & Play him next to Deion Jones and feel good about that tandem kicking some butt!
LB Isaiah Simmons. The Clemson product might fall out of the Top 10. One Mock Draft had the Falcons trading up to #11 to get him. He’s a talented Hybrid/OLB/Safety, but take a look at the Ohio State CF Playoff match-up and see why I’m scared off.
The Wild Card Pick rounds out my Falcons Top 10 List. You know how T likes to identify a player and then go get him, even though they could trade back and still get him (remember Keanu Neal).
There is a pretty good chance the Falcons 1st round pick comes out of this collection of players. Sure hope T & Q get it right!
Buck Belue can be heard weekdays on 680 The Fan’s “Buck & Kincade” from NOON to 3pm!