Atlanta Falcons: Front Office can’t rely on combine performances

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The Atlanta Falcons front office had their eyes on some of the best prospects in college football at the NFL Combine.

What the Atlanta Falcons can’t do is fall in love with the numbers. There were a lot of great numbers to look out too, but that is just one piece of the puzzle when trying to find football players and not combine warriors.

The NFL Combine gives teams the chance to look at things like how fast and explosive a player is, a player’s strength, and a player’s lateral quickness. While posting great numbers in the various workouts will help a player stand out, the Falcons can’t afford to fall in love with them.

There have been numerous guys that have come into the combine and showed out and none of what they did translate on the field. Names like Darrius Heyward-Bey and Troy Williamson come to mind.

Two of the fastest players at their respective combines failed to live up to expectations and it cost the Raiders and the Vikings a chance to land someone who could have helped their respective teams. These guys were also first-round picks.

There will be guys who don’t show well at the combine as well but that doesn’t mean they need to be dismissed.

Future Hall of Famers like Terrell Suggs, Drew Brees, and Anquan Bolden didn’t test well at the combine but yet they are some of the best at their respective positions.

No one is saying that the Atlanta Falcons should disregard the numbers these athletes put up, but at the end of the game, there’s a difference between combine speed and game speed. Also, the game tape doesn’t lie.

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With the team in the state that it’s in now, it’s imperative that the Atlanta Falcons don’t have any slip-ups in this draft and step one in doing that is making sure the guys they select can play, not because they can do 40 reps on the bench or a 4.24 40 yard time.