The Atlanta Falcons have finally bottomed out in 2020 after nearly making it in 2021. Dan Quinn was fired, and now Arthur Smith will have a chance to lead the team. They still have a promising offense, but they need to make improvements in the 2021 NFL Draft to prepare them for present and future success.
The bigger question for the Falcons is whether or not they’ll consider a quarterback with the No.4 pick. They still have Matt Ryan and are going to hang on to him to avoid racking up a huge dead blow, but could they draft a successor? If a player they like enough is there with their top pick, they could definitely consider it.
Other than that, the team will need to continue building up their defense and filling in the holes they have in attack to compete in one of the NFL’s toughest divisions in the NFC South.
Here’s a look at the Falcons’ picks in the 2021 NFL Draft:
MORE NFL PROJECT: Complete 7-Round Mockup | Top 100 large boards
Falcons’ 2021 Draft Pick: When Does Atlanta Pick?
- Round 1, choice n ° 4
- Round 2, choice n ° 35
- 3rd round, choice n ° 68
- Round 4, choice n ° 108
- Round 5, choice n ° 148
- Round 5, choice n ° 182
- Round 5, choice n ° 183
- Round 6, choice n ° 187
- Round 6, choice n ° 219
2021 NFL Falcons Order Project
|5||38 (Compensatory selection)|
|5||39 (Compensatory selection)|
|6||35 (Compensatory selection)|
MORE: Read The Latest NFL Draft News At SN Draft HQ
NFL Falcons Draft Needs
- Cornerback: First-round rookie AJ Terrell sometimes flashed last year, but the Falcons gave up 293.6 passing yards per game last year. It ranked last in the NFL. Finding another exterior starter to pair with Terrell is imperative.
- Edge rusher: The Falcons have Grady Jarrett on the defensive tackle and Dante Fowler on a defensive end position. However, they don’t have much else in terms of passing throwers. Finding one could go a long way in helping their defense, which was tied for ninth-least sacks per game last season (1.8).
- Security: The loss of Keanu Neal, Ricardo Allen and Damontae Kazee in a single offseason destroyed the Falcons’ safe depth. They need another potential starter to challenge Jaylinn Hawkins and Erik Harris for playing time.
- Offensive line: Atlanta can replace center Alex Mack with 2020 third-round pick Matt Hennessy, but they need to add another player to fill the hole they have in left guard. They can do this by drafting a guard or picking a tackle and kicking right tackle Kaleb McGary inside to keep. That last move may be the best option for McGary’s inconsistent play on the outside.
- Strategist: Matt Ryan is the only Falcons QB under contract right now following the retirement of Matt Schaub. Ryan is 35, so the Falcons need a young replacement they can prepare to eventually replace Ryan as a starter. That could mean targeting Justin Fields, Trey Lance or Mac Jones with the No. 4 pick overall.
Falcons simulated project 2021
Here are the latest projections from the 2021 NFL Draft for the Falcons, according to Vinnie Iyer’s seven-round mock draft:
|1||4||Trey Lance||QB||North Dakota State|