Atlanta Falcons should go get Bruce Irvin in free agency
Seahawks linebacker Bruce Irvin is reportedly expected to earn around $9.5 million a year, and the Atlanta Falcons should ensure it’s with them.
By now, we all know just how badly the Atlanta Falcons need pass rushers. And you’re likely already aware that the team currently only has five selections in the upcoming NFL draft in April. With so many needs on defense, free agency will need to come into play.
READ MORE: Four players the Falcons should target in free agency
Bruce Irvin’s name has been circulating around Atlanta ever since the comments he made last spring, and now it looks like the Falcons will have the chance to finally bring him in.
John Clayton of ESPN believes “Irvin of the Seahawks should get close to $9.5 million a year from Jacksonville or Atlanta”, which would suggest the Falcons are very much interested in luring his signature.
Falcons coach Dan Quinn would certainly agree. Quinn worked with Irvin during his time as defensive coordinator in Seattle, and knows just how valuable he could be to the growth of his defense in Atlanta. Quinn was mute on the subject when pressed at the combine, but that’s hardly surprising with the NFL’s tampering rules.
If Irvin does as expected test the open market on March 9, the Falcons can’t afford to pass up on a huge opportunity to strengthen their pass rush. Registering 19 sacks over the course of a season is pathetic and won’t get the job done if you want to be a regular playoff contender. For some comparison, the Texans’ J.J. Watt posted 17.5 sacks on his own. The Super Bowl-winning Broncos posted a league-high 52 sacks. Of the top-ten teams for sacks in 2015, nine made the playoffs.
The Falcons will need more than a draft pick here or there or a bargain free agent to fix their dormant pass rush. To make a playoff push each year, Vic Beasley must be surrounded with players who can disrupt offensive linemen and get after the quarterback.
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Irvin can do that. His 22 sacks over the past four seasons and ability to hurry the quarterback would go a long way to helping fix the Falcons’ anaemic pass rush.
Atlanta Falcons, you know what to do.