Atlanta Falcons: Four players who need to improve against Titans

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Aug 14, 2015; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Falcons linebacker Vic Beasley (44) rushes Tennessee Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota (8) in the first quarter of a preseason NFL football game at Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Vic Beasley

Last season, the Atlanta Falcons managed just 22 sacks. They turned to defensive end Vic Beasley, selected out of Clemson with the eighth overall pick in April’s draft. And while Beasley has certainly made a positive impact on defense, we need to see more from a player selected so high.

Let’s start with the positives. Beasley has definitely made an impact, and his lightning burst off the snap never gets boring to watch. He’s made two sacks and is unlucky the number isn’t higher. There’s been plenty of times his pressure almost ends in a sack or at least throws the quarterback off balance. Moving forward, he can be the star of this defense.

But when you take a player with such a high pick, expectations are sky high. Rookies can take time to adjust to the NFL, and patience is of course necessary with the Clemson product. There’s no doubt in my mind he will become a key playmaker on defense. But it’s important he starts to make a bigger impact on games. Rookie or not, the Falcons have a lot invested in him, and the pass rush needs a jolt.

Next: Falcons fantasy outlook for Week 7

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