The Atlanta Falcons have reported to having over $7 million in cap space. Thomas Dimitroff also mentioned that that money would be primarily for emergency spending. A lot of fans wanted it to be spent in a few locations and it is still being identified if the Mike Johnson injury qualifies as an emergency. But what should the Falcons do with that money?
The most popular opinion is to sign Richard Seymour. He’s been a top quality defensive tackle for a long time in the league but came off a mediocre season and is very injury prone. The Falcons have attempted to strike a deal, but they didn’t want to pay as much as he was asking for. It made it very apparent that Seymour was not looking for a team that could win him a championship; he was looking for a team that will give him some money.
The Falcons would probably be the best fit for a guy like that with a lineman rotation and a more skilled defense. But they go after leader type guys and athletes that want to win more than they want a big check. On top of that, Corey Peters is looking stellar so far. As an average tackle in the league, he was good in a rotation, but now he’s looking better than ever. The Falcons may not need as much help on the defensive front as they had previously thought.
Then there is the Right Tackle position. It’s a very puzzling position. Tyson Clabo was under contract for three years making just over $4 million. Considering Atlanta has over $7 million now, I’m not very sure why he was released. It was obviously in anticipation of great play from either Mike Johnson or Lamar Holmes.
Holmes it is! After fracturing his fibula, Mike Johnson is out for the season. It was news that Dimitroff did not want to hear. Lamar is still a very skilled and athletic, yet unproven right tackle. In the last game he looked pretty bad which brings up the possibility of signing a free agent right tackle. There are only two names that would be a possibility and they are Winston Justice and Sean Locklear.
Locklear would be my choice in that he’s a pretty good run blocker, but he can’t open any lanes. Matt Ryan handles pressure pretty well from the right side and the Falcons need as much run blocking as they can get if they are looking to be more effective on the ground.
Winston Justice started the season last year with the Colts and looked very good, but ended up losing his stride by the end of the season. While he was in Philadelphia, he tended to do pretty well except for a few games that were just awful. That seemed to end in Indiana, but he is anything but consistent.
Either of these guys would do well to have a shot at starting. If anything, it would light a fire beneath Lamar Holmes. Competition is always good. But the UDFA under Holmes currently is looking pretty good and might get a shot this coming up game. Maybe just letting Holmes play out and saving the money for next season would be a good choice.
What should Atlanta do with the extra money?