Several Atlanta Falcons struggled Thursday night
The initial thought is Matt Schaub was the Atlanta Falcons player that struggled the most. What if he wasn’t though?
For the record, Schaub managed an impressive 8 QBR last night for the Atlanta Falcons. However, there were a few more performances that were much more alarming that it came from guys that will potentially be counted on at some time in 2019. I am talking about Sean Harlow, Eric Saubert and Logan Paulsen.
Harlow was not good last night. He repeatedly got knocked back by undersized defensive tackles and struggled to climb to the next level on double team blocks. Harlow was thought of as a guy that was going to make the leap from practice squad to active squad and after last night, they should just cut him and move on. He is not talented enough to be an NFL offensive lineman and after two years, this should be apparent to everyone.
The two tight end issues surprised me. Eric Saubert is a guy that several teammates have talked about in regards to his work ethic and many said had improved. He struggled in every facet of the game last night. Blocking, route running and catching.; he was a guy last year that should not have been on the active roster and I still believe that.
Logan Paulsen is another tight end that can get cut this week as well. The 32-year-old journeyman tight end looked slow last night and, for the most part, we did not see a lot of “NFL” speed out of the third and fourth team Broncos defense.
Hooper has gotten better each of his first three years and there is no reason to believe that year four will be any different. If the Falcons are going to go with three tight ends in 2019 like that did in 2018, the difference between keeping Paulsen or Saubert will likely come down to age and the Falcons keeping the younger Saubert. Sadly.
Lastly, on a positive note, John Wetzel got the start at right tackle last night after rookie Kaleb McGary had surgery. Wetzel struggled at right tackle in the first half looking slow and had a hard time getting off the ball. However, at half time, they moved him back to left guard and I thought he did some good things over there. If he plays like he did in the second half, he will add some valuable depth to the offensive line.