The Atlanta Falcons now have a thin and not so impressive defensive backfield.
The Atlanta Falcons announced Thursday that they had waived Ricardo Allen after six seasons with the team, leaving the defensive backfield looking very thin and extremely unimpressive.
The loss of Allen, along with Keanu Neal and Damontae Kazee entering the free agency period as unrestricted free agents, leaves a lot to be desired in the secondary.
Neal, who missed almost all of the 2018 and 2019 seasons due to injury, will more than likely not be brought back. When he was on the field, he was among the hardest-hitting defenders in the league.
Unfortunately for him, that was his downfall and he will most likely be playing for a different team in 2021.
Kazee is a player that has proven in a short time that he is a valuable asset to the team, leading the league in interceptions in 2018 and totaling 156 combined tackles across the ’18 and ’19 seasons.
He should be one of the free agents the Atlanta Falcons try to sign, however, he is coming off of an Achilles injury, which could be a concern for the team.
The Atlanta Falcons will have two options when looking at ways to fill the need at the safety positions, the NFL Draft and the free agency period. Thankfully for the Atlanta Falcons, there are plenty of great rookie prospects and free agents for the team to take a look at.
Given the cap situation currently, the draft may be the best option, unless the team restructures player contracts, namely Matt Ryan’s contract.
The draft could be the best bet for the Atlanta Falcons.
Given the plethora of talent at the safety position, the Atlanta Falcons could afford to wait until later in the draft to find its guy.
The organization was able to draft both Ricardo Allen and Damontae Kazee in the fifth round, so there is no hurry to draft a safety in the first or second round. Instead, focus on areas of bigger concern, and then take a look at the remaining safeties available.
This is a team with a lot of needs across the board, so it is important that the Atlanta Falcons resign either Neal or Kazee, and then address the additional starting safety opening through the NFL Draft or free agency.
There is a lot of work to do on this defense because the NFL has been a passing league for a while, and if you can’t at least slow down the opponent’s passing game, there is no hope of winning many games.
This is an area the Atlanta Falcons have struggled in for well over a decade now and will continue to do so until the problems are addressed.