I think it is safe to say that Dan Quinn loves him some SEC players, he really believes all that hype of “SEC speed”. Most of the early draft picks between the duo of Dimitroff and Quinn has been fast players from the SEC. I get it, Keanu Neal, Deion Jones and Calvin Ridley look like brilliant picks early in their careers. Neal is already a pro-bowl safety, Jones is considered to be the best cover LB in the league and Ridley was Top five in the NFL as a rookie with 10 TD’s.
There is one SEC player they totally whiffed on – Jalen Collins.
Collins coming out of SEC power LSU seemed like the right pick at the time. Big fast corner that would add to the Quinn mantra of being big and fast on defense. However, Dimitroff again ignored the warning signs before drafting a player as high (no pun intended) as they did Collins.
During the NFL combine, it was revealed that Collins had failed multiple drug tests during his playing career at LSU. Several teams completely took Collins off of their draft boards because of this. So not only did the Falcons waste a second round pick on a guy that had already failed multiple drug tests, they took him earlier than they needed to.
As we all know, Collins would go on to miss multiple seasons with the Falcons and would be suspended by the NFL four different time for failing more drug tests. The Falcons would eventually cut Collins in December of 2017.
Who could the Falcons have drafted instead of Jalen Collins? How about Benardrick McKinney. The all pro pass rusher would be taken by the Texans a few picks later in that same second round.