Atlanta Falcons mock draft post Free Agency's first wave

Should the Falcons go wide receiver in the first? Only if it's the best player available.

Allstate Sugar Bowl - Texas v Washington
Allstate Sugar Bowl - Texas v Washington / Sean Gardner/GettyImages
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Round 2, No. 43 overall: QB Michael Penix, Washington

2023: 15 Games Played, 363-of-555 (65.4 percent), 4,903 Yards, 36 Touchdowns, 11 Interceptions, 35 Carries, 8 Yards, 3 Touchdowns, 1 Tackle
2022: 13 Games Played, 362-of-554 (65.3 percent), 4,641 Yards, 31 Touchdowns, 8 Interceptions, 35 Carries, 92 Yards, 4 Touchdowns
2021: 5 Games Played, 87-of-162 (53.7 percent), 939 Yards, 4 Touchdowns, 7 Interceptions, 17 Carries, -27 Yards, 2 Touchdowns
2020: 6 Games Played, 124-of-220 (56.4 percent), 1,645 Yards, 14 Touchdowns, 4 Interceptions, 18 Carries, 25 Yards, 2 Touchdowns
2019: 7 Games Played, 110-of-160 (68.8 percent), 1,394 Yards, 10 Touchdowns, 4 Interceptions, 22 Carries, 119 Yards, 2 Touchdowns
2018: 3 Games Played, 21-of-34 (61.8 percent), 219 Yards, 1 Touchdown, 0 Interceptions, 7 Carries, 45 Yards

The Falcons did bring in Kirk Cousins to be the quarterback, but he's already going to be 36 when the season starts. They need a long-term option who can fit this scheme well, or at a minimum a backup who could potentially start in two years if Kirk washes out.

Michael Penix, Jr. led his team to a national championship appearance with fantastic passing and the kind of leadership the Falcons were missing in 2023. Penix is left-handed so a re-tooling of the offensive line the next two seasons needs to happen for when he eventually takes over.

However, Penix has the kind of ceiling that Matthew Stafford has in this scheme with his ability to process defenses at an elite level and his strong arm.

Penix would benefit greatly from sitting for two years and letting his body get back to 100 percent. After those two years, the Falcons could have a newly retired quarterback and a 25-year-old who's spent two years in the scheme learning from him and building chemistry with the top targets in the offense.

The former Husky would be a perfect fit in Atlanta.