Even Without Bush, Falcons Could Still Afford Clowney Trade


Sep 7, 2013; Athens, GA, USA; South Carolina Gamecocks defensive end Jadeveon Clowney (7) rushes the passer against the Georgia Bulldogs during the second half at Sanford Stadium. Georgia defeated South Carolina 41-30. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Last week, the Falcons sent an offer sheet to Saints Safety Rafael Bush in hopes of reuniting him with close friend William Moore.  Bush graded out as a solid safety in 2013, and Dimitroff certainly wanted to bring him in.  It looked as if it was going to happen after the Saints signed CFB Safety Marcus Ball and Future Hall of Famer Champ Baily, but GM Mickey Loomis has proven to be insanely clever this offseason.  Unfortunately, the Saints matched the offer, and will keep Bush for the 2014 season.

Having that safety would have given Dimitroff a ton of flexibility in the upcoming draft, and would have made a trade up for Jadeveon Clowney more affordable for a depth deprived Atlanta Falcons team.  However, this draft class brings a very deep pool of talented prospects, and the Falcons could very well hit on a prospect in the 3rd round or beyond.

Dec 21, 2013; Albuquerque, NM, USA; Washington State Cougars safety Deone Bucannon (20) returns an interception in the second quarter against the Colorado State Rams during the Gildan New Mexico Bowl at University Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Players such as Calvin Pryor, Jimmie Ward, and Lamarcus Joyner will all entice Falcons fans in the second round, but it will be hard to say no to a player of Clowney’s caliber if a trade opportunity arises.

Deone Bucannon (my personal favorite) or Terrence Brooks are two players the Falcons had the opportunity to see in person at the Senior Bowl, and either would be excellent 3rd round additions to Atlanta’s secondary.  This would allow Dimitroff to deal the team’s 2nd round pick, pick up a once-in-a-generation type prospect in Jadeveon Clowney, and still acquire that Free Safety that the club so badly needs.  Consider the fact that an improved pass rush will benefit the secondary, and the move seems quite reasonable.

Sure this pushes back some needs, but you aren’t going to fill all of the needs in one year.  The young guys you have will continue to develop, and if they don’t meet expectations, it’s not as if the draft only comes once every five years.  With ten picks in Dimitroff’s arsenal (three non-tradable), you can bet there will be some trades.