Five Atlanta Falcons who could see expanded roles in 2016
5) Kemal Ishmael – SS
Kemal Ishmael was never supposed to see extensive time in the NFL. The Atlanta Falcons threw their seventh-round pick on him back in the 2013 draft and he was able to work his way up the depth chart and here he is today.
Ishmael made a name for himself in 2014 when he took over the strong safety starting role after William Moore went down with injury. Ishmael is best known for a pick 6 against in the Falcons’ 56-14 blowout of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in week 3 of that season.
Ishmael was a bench warmer to start the 2015 season. He saw just six snaps through the teams’ first three games but his playing time picked way up in the middle part of the season when Moore missed two games. Moore also missed the last three games of the year which put Ishmael on the field on nearly every down. All-in-all, Ishmael played 375 snaps while Moore played 505.
The Falcons currently do not have a starting strong safety other than Ishmael on the roster. Atlanta cut Moore which leaves a big hole to fill at the position. it appears that the Falcons will address the position in the draft but even if they do, you should still expect to see Ishmael on the field a decent amount in 2015. Expect somewhere around 400 snaps for the 4-year man.