Falcons could lose a first-round pick for alleged tampering violations

Based on what people inside the league have said, the Atlanta Falcons could end up losing a first-round pick if they tampered with Kirk Cousins.

Atlanta Falcons v Chicago Bears
Atlanta Falcons v Chicago Bears / Justin Casterline/GettyImages

Tampering has long been a problem in the NFL—a problem that is often overlooked. I wrote about it on Sunday, the Atlanta Falcons have been playing with fire when it came to their handling of recruiting Kirk Cousins.

What wasn't known was the potential severity of the violations. According to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, people within the league think the Falcons should be docked a first-round pick—especially after Kirk Cousins all but admitted to violations in his introductory press conference.

The Atlanta Falcons could lose their first-round pick due to tampering violation

There was an obvious 'elephant in the room' when Kirk Cousins was giving his first press conference as the quarterback of the Atlanta Falcons—a press conference that the team mysteriously removed from their YouTube channel.

At different points during the conference Cousins tried to backtrack with what he was saying. There is no doubt that the Falcons broke the rules, but so does every other team. The question is the severity.

Well, things could get ugly. With Cousins saying that he had met with the head athletic trainer of the Falcons and then he pulled that statement back and said he called him, the league could view that as a massive violation.

Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk says that he talked to a general manager in the league about it and he said it should cost the Falcons a first-round pick.

What a development that would be. The Falcons better hope the NFL takes a long time to investigate so that they can avoid losing the eighth-overall pick.

This isn't unprecedented either. The league punished the Miami Dolphins by taking away their 2023 first-round pick for talking with Tom Brady and Sean Payton a few years ago. This is dangerous water the Falcons are in.

If Atlanta can get through this with just a fine and maybe the loss of a late-round pick then they should be happy.

There are ways to get away with tampering, teams do it every year. The Falcons were way too open with their handling of recruiting Kirk Cousins and Cousins talked just a little too much during his conference. They could pay a big price.

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