Picture this. It’s April 23rd and the Falcons are on the clock with the 16th pick. Furthermore, cuts have been made and its time to see the future. The future seems dim but it appears general manager Thomas Dimitroff has a plan. The following are my picks in my Falcons’ 2020 NFL Mock Draft.
Falcons’ 2020 NFL Mock Draft
Round 1, Pick 16
C.J. Henderson, Cornerback, Florida
According to a report by Tom Pelissero of NFL Network, the Falcons are releasing Desmond Trufant. This leaves them with a giant hole at cornerback that was otherwise a position the Falcons received lackluster production from. Insert C.J. Henderson and the Falcons are banking in on development. Henderson is arguably the 2nd best corner in the draft as he finished his career with 93 tackles, 20 pass deflections, and six interceptions. He adds much-needed potential to a talented group that includes Isaiah Oliver and Kendall Sheffield who have made huge strides.
Round 2, Pick 47
Antoine Winfield Jr., Safety, Minnesota
Keanu Neal has been on injured reserve back-to-back seasons. Even though the Falcons expect Neal to be ready and healthy it would be wise to find his replacement now. Despite this, defensive coordinator Raheem Morris has mentioned that he wants playmakers all across this defense. Insert Winfield Jr. who is a hard-hitting safety that has a nose for the ball. Adding young and hungry players in the secondary is a must for the Atlanta Falcons. For example, Winfield Jr. finished his career with 174 tackles, nine interceptions, and six pass deflections. This is what I call a perfect selection in the 2020 NFL Mock Draft.
Round 3, Pick 78
Julian Okwara, Defensive End, Notre Dame
Earlier this offseason the Falcons elected to not re-sign former first-round pick, Vic Beasley. Despite the fan opinions about him, his departure does cause the Falcons pass-rush to take a hit. Okwara is a solid pass-rusher with an impressive athletic profile. He can also drop into coverage when called upon because he is built into that 3-4 edge mold. Okwara finished his career with 77 tackles, two interceptions, and 14.5 sacks.
Round 4, Pick 119
Hakeem Adeniji, Offensive Guard/Tackle, Kansas
The fact of the matter is the Atlanta Falcons had one of the worst offensive lines in football last season. Matt Ryan was sacked 48 times which is completely unacceptable. Adeniji is a diamond in the rough and pops on film. For example, Adeniji is often the first guy off the ball in the rushing attack for the Jayhawks. Adeniji will immediately battle Matt Gono, Jamon Brown, and James Carpenter for the starting spot.
Round 4, Pick 129
Anthony McFarland, Running Back, Maryland
With the release of Devonta Freeman, the Falcons now have a hole at running back. However, the Falcons have 3 running backs who have all been inconsistent. McFarland would give the Falcons a dynamic back that can hit the holes fast and get much-needed yardage. He finished his career with 1,648 yards and 12 touchdowns while averaging 6.4 yards a carry in his two seasons as a Terapin.
Round 7, Pick 228
Robert Landers, Defensive Line, Ohio State
While some people view seventh-round picks as throwaways, they are good opportunities to get first dibs on an otherwise priority free agent. Landers was buried on the depth chart due to the Buckeyes opting for more speed. Landers has decent pass-rushing ability and could be in Dan Quinn’s plan moving forward. He finished his career with 65 tackles, 24.5 tackles for loss, and 2.5 sacks.
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