We're here. Finally. It's NFL Draft week. That means it's time for a little less talk and a lot more action.
Those are all pluses after the never-ending line of mock drafts – We put out 12! True fricking story. – entering your timelines since the 2021 season ended.
- Tori's seven-round mock: Falcons get Drake London in trade down
- McElhaney: Why the Falcons should not draft a quarterback at No. 8
- Wyche: How Marcus Mariota could fit into Falcons long-term QB plan
- Eight at No. 8: Kayvon Thibodeaux, Kyle Hamilton, Malik Willis, Charles Cross, Garrett Wilson, Sauce Gardner, Jermaine Johnson II, Travon Walker
The Falcons are in great position to get what they want from this NFL Draft, with five picks in the top 82 providing flexibility and the capital required to move around the board if Terry Fontenot so chooses.
We've gone over ever scenario at this point, with a few discussion points remaining that filled up this mailbag.
Let's get to your questions. Stick around for an opportunity to make the call with what the Falcons do at No. 8 overall:
Treland Jones from Atlanta
I think Jameson Williams at 8 and matt corral at 31 is the future for the falcons. Take the best players available should be the only point when drafting players. Rookies allow you to spend on other positions and build up a strong defensive front. with Ridley and Jameson taking the top off defenses Pitts overs the middle corral at quarterback looks like a potent combination at very little cost what do you think?
Bair: Going offense early and often is a bold move, Treland. Your suggestion means the Falcons will likely have to use three draft assets, probably No. 8 and both second-round picks to make that move. That means the Falcons wouldn't address their defense AT ALL until the third round.
Not sure I would do that for a receiver and a quarterback like that. Maybe edge rusher at No. 8 and, if you love Matt Corral, take him at No. 31? At some point you'll either need a quarterback or A-list edge rusher on a rookie contract. While the Falcons should keep eyes on the horizon, adding a pass rusher helps far more than a quarterback, where Marcus Mariota's already in place as a viable option.
I know it's not fun or sexy to say but going with the best player time and again will lead to a quality, competitive team. There are better times, and more ways than ever, to add a quarterback via draft (2023), trade or even free-agent signing. There are no quick fixes to roster building the right way. You add one good piece whenever you can, stacking players and draft classes to build a stable foundation of talent capable of competing for division titles every year.
Barry Wynn from Rex, Ga.
I think a very likely situation is that Hamilton from Notre Dame will be available at 8? Pees obviously could use him anywhere? Do you see Hamilton falling to 8, Scott?
Bair: It sure seems more likely, based upon reports coming from NFL draft analysts and reporters, doesn't it?? I've made my opinion on Kyle Hamilton pretty clear. I think he's awesome, a game changer who can lead and set the tone defensively.
If he's there, I'd have a tough time passing him up. It seems more likely, however, that receiver could be a backup plan at No. 8 if Sauce Gardner's gone and there's an edge rusher frenzy. Hamilton could well just sail on by at No. 8. Or…Or…he's gone at No. 3 or whatever because he's so talented and his game tape is top-notch.
We take a look at eight options for Atlanta's first-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.
Bill Whitten from Killen, Ga.
There's a lot of talk of the Falcons taking either an edge rusher or a receiver. If the choice is a receiver most mock drafts select Garrett Wilson. I disagree. I think it would be Drake London. Unless I'm mistaken don't Wilson and Calvin Ridley have the same skill set? I believe the Falcons plan on him being with the team next year and therefore wouldn't go with the same type receiver. Am I off base with my thinking?
Bair: I don't think you're completely off base, Bill. Most of it is the build, right? Calvin Ridley is 6-foot-1, 190 pounds. Garrett Wilson is 6-0, 188. That's pretty close. It's also not all. Both are known as solid route runners who can break away from defenders after the catch, running around people over running through them. I'm sure someone who has seen Wilson more could add depth to this comparison, but I think it's safe to say they're somewhat similar.
To take this conversation one step further, having Ridley under contract for 2023, when he's eligible to come off suspension, should prevent the Falcons from drafting Wilson if they like him. I do believe the Falcons prefer bigger-bodied targets, but the proof will be in the type of receivers they draft after not taking one in their first go-round.
There's also no guarantee that Ridley will play for the Falcons again. I tend to think, and this is just me talking, that he won't. The Falcons need quality at the receiver spot. Wilson is excellent, but so are several others available in the first few rounds. The Falcons could have their pick at No. 8, or choose from other quality in the second round.
You make the call AND call for questions
I want to hear who you think the Falcons will pick at No. 8 and why. And by "why," I mean that I want ONE SENTENCE. That's it. Quickly sum up why the Falcons should pick your guy at No. 8 and submit it right here. Oh, and submit anther round of questions for a quick Wednesday Bair Mail.
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