Round Two (43rd overall and 58th overall)
First mock: Isaiah Spiller, RB (Texas A&M, 43rd); Alec Lindstrom, iOL (Boston College, 58th)
Current Selection: DeMarvin Leal, IDL (Texas A&M, 43rd); John Metchie III, WR (Alabama, 58th)
Staying with the Aggies for the first pick in the second round, Atlanta decides to opt-out of offense first and stay defensive-oriented to begin the 2022 NFL Draft. And they secure a player who may well turn out to be a monster when paired next to Grady Jarrett.
Leal projects himself as a fringe first-round pick but does have problems with consistency gaining leverage against opposing offensive lines, something that should be corrected at the next level. However, his ability to play effectively in three and four-man fronts does showcase a player who can dominate interior linemen.
While the Aggies primarily played Leal from the EDGE, Atlanta selecting him should allow the ability to pair up with Grady Jarrett on the interior and see how much damage they can cause together.
With their second pick in the second round, now we see the Falcons attempt to patch up the offense, and surprisingly to nobody, they pick a wide receiver from “Wide Receiver U”, also known as the Alabama Crimson Tide. It doesn’t seem to matter who comes out of Bama; they play receiver, look for a “404” area code on your phone come draft day.
Metchie’s play during his three years of college showed a player that’s raw, but when he’s healthy, he can beat you in more ways than Mr. Miyagi could teach. Furthermore, his ability to be sophisticated in his route running does offer the ability to separate and get open consistently, but he does need to improve on contested catches, something Alabama receivers rarely experience.
The only major problem with Metchie is how he’s projected to recover from his ACL tear in the SEC Championship game. Before that injury, he was generating first-round pick buzz, even if it would’ve been a reach.
Now, assuming he’s healthy, the Falcons pounce on him in the second round and reap the rewards once Ridley returns (assuming that happens).