Atlanta Falcons: Who needs to step up in 2019

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 06: Cornerback Desmond Trufant
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 06: Cornerback Desmond Trufant /
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Julio Jones had an incredible rookie season with 959 receiving yards and eight touchdowns. In his second year, Julio was able to elevate his game with 1,198 yards and 10 receiving touchdowns during the 2012 season. The Falcons needed that extra weapon to elevate their offense and Julio was able to do that creating big plays. He was able to generate more attention in the secondary helping out Roddy White and Tony Gonzalez.

Just like Julio Jones, the Falcons need Calvin Ridley to step up in his second year. Ridley had an incredible rookie season with 821 yards and 10 receiving touchdowns. Ridley stepping up in 2019 will be huge for this offense. Everyone knows Julio is going to get all the attention in the secondary, so if Ridley can consistently beat his guy in one-on-one coverage, the Falcons offense will thrive. If Ridley can have a similar season Julio had his second year (1,198 yards and 10 receiving touchdowns) the Falcons will have a top 5 offense.

Finally, Devonta Freeman needs to step up by simply being on the field. Freeman looked like the Falcons back of the future in 2015 and 2016 when he had back-to-back thousand yard rushing seasons. Since then, Freeman has not been able to stay healthy and the Falcons have to rely on Tevin Coleman, who decide to leave via Free Agency and rejoin former Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan in San Francisco. Devonta has to stay out of the training room and get back to the performance that earned him his last extension.