Atlanta Falcons have found starters in the likeliest of places.
The Atlanta Falcons, just like every other team in the NFL, brings aboard quite a few undrafted free agents. Most will never make the team or the practice squad. There is a player they signed that could prove to be an outright steal, Jared Pinkney.
The Atlanta Falcons already have Hayden Hurst on the squad and the starting position is pretty much his to lose. The Falcons also bring back Jaeden Graham who showed a lot of promise when Austin Hooper went down with an injury last year. Everything else behind those two is up for grabs.
Pinkney could have come out after his junior year and been an early to mid-round pick but decided to head back to school to improve his draft stock. Vanderbilt Commodores didn’t have the best season and Pickney missed some time with injury. The combination of those two things had the exact opposite effect he was hoping for.
Lots of offensive depth for the Atlanta Falcons
Even with his lackluster senior season, Pinkney has a lot to offer to this Atlanta Falcons offense. Playing in one of, if not the toughest conference in college football definitely helps his case.
In terms of the passing game, he is everything you could want in a tight end. He’s strong, athletic, and has great hands. While blocking might not be his best trait, he’s a willing one and should improve over time.
If Pinkney makes the active roster, he can only get better from here. Pinkney was the focal point of an offense that really didn’t have a capable quarterback or weapons around him. In Atlanta, he would have Matt Ryan at quarterback, Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley at receiver, and a stable of solid running backs including Todd Gurley.
Ryan has a way of making tight ends look good in this offense and Pinkney could benefit from that. If he is able to make this team, he will be another cog in the machine that is the Atlanta Falcons offense.