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5 Potential Mid-Round Targets in the 2017 NFL Draft

Posted Apr 24, 2017

Since Dan Quinn took over as head coach, the Falcons have been highly successful with their draft choices in Days 2 and 3. Who will Atlanta target after the first couple of rounds this year?

At present, the Falcons hold six picks in the upcoming NFL Draft -- including No. 31 overall. There's been a lot of discussion regarding who Atlanta might take in the first round, but, as always, there will be plenty of other chances to inject talent into the roster.

With that in mind, here's a look at five prospects the Falcons could target in the middle rounds.

Deatrich Wise, DE, Arkansas
A strong, physical lineman with long arms, big hands and a “explosive power,” Wise has a “very high ceiling as a pass-rusher,” according to Todd McShay. The 6-foot-5, 274-pounder had a strong junior campaign, racking up eight sacks and two forced fumbles as a backup for the Razorbacks. His production declined last year, though, as he amassed only 3.5 sacks and 5.5 tackles for loss. Those pedestrian stats hurt his draft stock, but the raw talent has a lot of potential and could enjoy a long NFL career in the right situation.

Larry Ogunjobi, DT, UNC-Charlotte
Ogunjobi helped get the UNCC football program off the ground, starting every game in the team’s four-year history. The massive 6-foot-3, 305-pounder was consistently productive for the 49ers, tallying at least 9.5 tackles for loss each season and 127 combined tackles during his junior and senior seasons (62, 65). “Watching Ogunjobi play is like watching a more raw version of Sheldon Rankins,” according to NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein. Quite a compliment considering how coveted Rankins, selected No. 12 overall by New Orleans, was last year.

Xavier Woods, FS, Louisiana Tech
A first-team All-Conference USA pick for the last three years, Woods has earned a reputation for making big plays in the defensive backfield. With 14 interceptions and two pick-sixes during his collegiate career, he displayed the kind of hands and ball tracking skills few safeties possess. He’s also physical for a 5-foot-11, 197-pound athlete, as evident by his 20.5 tackles for loss, six forced fumbles and four sacks with the Bulldogs.

Jessamen Dunker, OL, Tennessee State
A left tackle in college, Dunker will likely move to guard at the next level. His performance at the Senior Bowl might have helped his stock: According to DraftAnalyst.com’s Tony Pauline, Dunker “showed a lot of next-level traits” and was “strong, explosive and fierce” in Mobile. Considered an above-average athlete with good speed -- his 4.98-second 40 impressed at the combine -- he could have the makeup necessary to fit in Atlanta’s outside zone scheme. He’s raw, though, and likely needs a lot of development before working his way to the top of an NFL depth chart.

Ahkello Witherspoon, CB, Colorado
Witherspoon checks a lot of the boxes head coach Dan Quinn looks for in a cornerback. He’s abnormally tall for his position at 6-foot-3. He’s 33-inch arms give him impressive length. And, as he displayed when he ran a 4.45-second 40, Witherspoon has blazing speed. He was productive in college, too, notching 23 passes defensed in 2016, tied for the most in the nation. If he can improve his tackling and overall physicality, he can become an effective cog in an NFL secondary.