Atlanta Falcons 2020 defensive line will show major improvement

Grady Jarrett Atlanta Falcons (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Grady Jarrett Atlanta Falcons (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /

The Atlanta Falcons 2020 defensive line has undergone a major makeover this offseason.

Atlanta Falcons key free-agent acquisition Dante Fowler and second-round draft pick Marlon Davidson are expected to contribute right off the bat in a huge way. The Falcons also traded for former first-round pick Charles Harris, which should hopefully add some youth and depth.

Since 2018, Fowler has come into his own and improved his game as one of the NFL’s top pass-rushers. His game is predicated on the power that overwhelms blockers off the edge, which should be a major upgrade over Vic Beasley.

Fowler has produced 13.5 sacks and 50 quarterback pressures over the past 23 games, which doesn’t even translate into two full seasons. This is night and day compared to what Beasley produced the past three seasons in total.

Marlon Davidson brings a fresh excitement with a high motor and added pop to a defensive line that has struggled to rush the quarterback and generate pressure for many years. He will be a major disruptor on the interior of the line next to Grady Jarrett.

Similar to Jarrett, Davidson exhibits a flash of quickness, power, and explosiveness. This combined with a never-ending motor should make him a nightmare to handle between the tackles.

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Nobody knows what to expect from starting right defensive end Takk McKinley. The key for him will be remaining healthy, in which pairing him as a bookend with Fowler can pay huge dividends.

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As for the returning backups for the Atlanta Falcons 2020 defensive line, the group includes versatile ends Allen Bailey, John Cominsky, and Steven Means. Bailey was solid against the run in 2019, while Cominsky played limited snaps, and Means was lost for the season due to injury.

Charles Harris was the 22nd pick of the first round in the 2017 draft, who needed a fresh start and a change of scenery. He can play both strongside linebacker and defensive end.

Reserve defensive tackles Tyeler Davison returns as a solid backup and is a stellar run defender. Nobody knows what to expect from Deadrin Senat, as he seems to have fallen into Dan Quinn’s doghouse for some inexplicable reason.

Add reserve Austin Larkin to the mix at right defensive end for even further depth off the bench. He showed flashes of good pash-rushing skills in limited time and seems to be a big fan of Quinn.

Hard-nosed players on the Atlanta Falcons 2020 defensive line will be key to the front’s success. For the first time in many years, there is genuine excitement as to what this group is capable of accomplishing.

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If Davidson, Fowler, and McKinley can all ball out stay healthy (especially McKinley), this can contribute to being the strongest unit and change the entire look of the Falcons defense. Raheem Morris should really be licking his chops heading into 2020 with the thought of what this defensive front is capable of, which will hopefully come to fruition.