The Atlanta Falcons priorities this offseason were agreed upon by nearly everyone. Address the lines. Which line they chose to address could’ve been debated until the cows came home.
The Atlanta Falcons spent cap and draft picks protecting your $150 million, franchise quarterback in Matt Ryan or you beef up the defensive line when you have young talent you’re still hoping develops. Well, we know how that played out.
Let’s hope, pray, wish on a shooting star or whatever luck inducing ritual you find yourself using that these two picks pan out. Why? Other than the fact they are two first rounders, I have three solid reasons for you: Gerald McCoy, Ndamokung Suh, and Bruce Irvin.
The Falcons will see these players six times this year. Not to mention Aaron Donald showing up on the schedule this year too.
And then there’s Ndamokung Suh, who despite his dirty player reputation, is a dominant force on the defensive line. After it was apparent the rams wouldn’t resign him, 31 other teams had a shot. Not every team had a need but you know who could’ve used a proven tackle? The Atlanta Falcons. You know who signed him? The Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
And surely Gerald McCoy was poised to leave the division and migrate north to the Ravens or Browns, meaning the Falcons might not have had to see him again in his career. Wrong. He ended up with the Panthers too.
In his 14 career games versus the Falcons, the man has amassed five sacks, 23 tackles, and 20 quarterback hits. Safe to say, Matt Ryan isn’t his biggest fan. Suh has two and a half sacks and six quarterback hits in four games against Atlanta. And Irvin has yet to get Ryan on the ground.
Rookies in the NFL, especially on the offensive line, are like a lion looking at steak for dinner.
So to McGary and Lindstrom, not only do we want you to succeed, we need you to.