Atlanta Falcons: Three first-round options in 2016 NFL Draft
LB Darron Lee, Ohio State
Dan Quinn wants to add speed on defense, and you won’t find a player much quicker than Darron Lee out of Ohio State. The Falcons need a coverage linebacker desperately, and Lee would fill that need right away. Lee has the speed and athleticism to hang with running backs, tight ends and wide receivers in the passing game, and he’s particularly strong in man coverage.
Lee’s skill set is the future of the position. He’s an undersized linebacker who would have previously been asked to play safety, but with passing games dominating in the NFL more and more, swapping size for speed is becoming a priority.
Lee would give the pass rush a boost. He can line up at outside or inside linebacker, and Quinn could find creative uses for him. His best fit would be as a weak-side linebacker. He’s quick to diagnose the play and get after the ball carrier.
While the Falcons will want to upgrade the pass rush as soon as possible, Lee might be the best player on the board at No. 17. With so many needs on defense, adding a player with the speed and athleticism of Lee could help give the defense a much-needed upgrade.
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