PHOENIX – The Falcons took care of their positional needs on the offensive side of the ball through free agency with the additions of Jamon Brown, James Carpenter, Luke Stocker and Kenjon Barner.
So, what does this mean for how Dan Quinn and Thomas Dimitroff will continue to address filing the remaining needs on the roster?
It’s clear the Falcons wanted immediate starters with experience at the guard position, meaning free agency would be the way they go about filling that specific need.
These moves also show where the Falcons view this year’s draft class strengths are as they will use their nine picks to begin addressing the other positions of need on the defensive side of the ball. The Falcons have the No. 14 overall pick in the NFL Draft, which kicks off April 25.
Quinn provided some insight on what some of those areas of focus will be, in no specific order.
1. Defensive tackle
At this point, the Falcons have three defensive tackles they feel comfortable with: Grady Jarrett, Jack Crawford and Deadrin Senat. Quinn wants to add more to that position, in hopes to be more “stout and stronger” along the interior of Falcons’ defensive line.
“We are definitely going to add to that group,” Quinn said from the NFL head coaches breakfast at the annual league meetings.
2. Defensive end
Similar to defensive tackle, Atlanta only has three defensive ends on its roster currently. Takk McKinley, Vic Beasley and Steven Means will all return for the 2019 season. Quinn wants eight to nine total defensive lineman who “can go at any point” so the Falcons will “certainly add guys to the mix” at this position.
3. The secondary
The Falcons’ secondary will look different in the upcoming season than year’s past. Second-year cornerback Isaiah Oliver is expected to assume the starting role opposite of Desmond Trufant. Keanu Neal and Ricardo Allen are expected to be healthy and ready to go at the start of training camp and Damontae Kazee will undergo a position change as he’s expected to start at nickel. Quinn wants to add more depth at these positions, specifically at cornerback and strong safety.
“Adding depth at strong safety [and] cornerback is important part of where we’re at,” Quinn said.