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Falcons 2015 Mock Draft Monitor 11.0

As the 2015 NFL Draft approaches, April 30 - May 2 in Chicago, experts continue monitoring the very latest information about their projected top picks, including those they have predicted to be selected as the Falcons' top choice next Thursday. Among the changes below, have a look at which analysts believe Nebraska's Randy Gregory is the best option for the Falcons, and why, despite admitting to a failed drug test at the 2015 NFL Scouting Combine.

Vic Beasley, OLB, Clemson

"Atlanta needs productivity from a pass-rusher, and I think new defensive coordinator Richard Smith will know how to get Beasley going in the same way Denver was able to get Von Miller going. Now, Beasley isn't Miller — but I do think he's a pure pass-rusher who can get to opposing QBs regardless of what system you're employing. Beasley had 44.5 tackles for loss over the last two seasons, and while I don't think he's an every-down player, he's going to come in ready to be used. Shane Ray is also an option here, and though I wouldn't rule out an O-line pick either, with (Iowa guard Brandon) Scherff off the board, the value isn't great in this slot."

Change from previous pick:* *Arik Armstead, DE, Oregon

Shane Ray, OLB, Missouri

"The Falcons desperately need to upgrade their pass rush, and they'll have several edge rushers from which to choose in this scenario. I have them going with Ray over Vic Beasley, because while both have elite first-step quickness, Ray has better length and is more relentless. The fact that he doesn't show much of a power element to his game on tape is a bit concerning, but he fills a need here. One thing to keep in mind, if Dante Fowler Jr. is available at this spot: New Falcons head coach Dan Quinn coached Fowler while at Florida in 2012."

Change from previous pick: Arik Armstead, DE, Oregon

Vic Beasley, OLB, Clemson

"Dan Quinn needs an explosive edge rusher and Beasley fits the description."

Change from previous pick: Randy Gregory, OLB, Nebraska

La'el Collins, OT, LSU

"The Falcons need to become tougher and more aggressive at the point of attack. Collins is a hard-nosed edge blocker with a nasty disposition and a workmanlike game."

Change from previous pick:Shane Ray, DE, Missouri

Randy Gregory, OLB, Nebraska

"After a failed drug test at the Combine, Gregory went through the media wringer. Well, guess what? Teams weren't as thrown off by it as you might think. There seems to be more concern about how his game translates to the pros. One thing is for certain: The guy can fly off the edge. He weighed in at just 235 pounds at the Combine, but there's hope he can get bigger at the next level. Dan Quinn's looking for pass rushers. Atlanta hasn't had one since John Abraham left town. Here's your guy."

The last thing the 2015 Scouting Combine participants were thinking about was their facial expressions, which makes them so darn funny to look at

Change from previous pick: Shane Ray, DE, Missouri

Randy Gregory, DE, Nebraska

"New Atlanta head coach Dan Quinn needs to find a pass rusher and Randy Gregory gets the call here although I am starting to think they could also go after a right tackle. Still, the former Cornhusker is the call."

Change from previous pick: Shane Ray, DE, Missouri

Alvin "Bud" Dupree, DE, Kentucky

"The Falcons brought in former Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinn as head coach to bring some intensity and pass rush. Dupree isn't as technically refined yet as some of his competitors, but he has the tools Quinn can develop."

Change from previous pick: Vic Beasley, OLB, Clemson

Shane Ray, DE, Missouri

"The Falcons have been active adding front-seven defenders via free agency, but that won't stop Atlanta from targeting a "Leo" pass rusher at this pick. Ray is far from a flawless prospect, but he might have the best first-step quickness in this draft class."

Change from previous pick: Vic Beasley, OLB, Clemson**


Vic Beasley, OLB, Clemson

"Beasley put on 10 pounds to get up to 246 and still blew out every test at the combine. He lived in opposing backfields, especially over the last two years with over 70 plays behind the line of scrimmage. The Falcons have not had an athlete like this since John Abraham."

Change from previous pick: No change

Randy Gregory, OLB, Nebraska

"Randy Gregory might not seem like a fit in the 4-3 defense the Atlanta Falcons are running, but look at head coach Dan Quinn's defenses in Seattle and you'll see Cliff Avril and Bruce Irvin. Gregory can fill that edge-rusher role for Atlanta by playing both defensive end and linebacker in the Falcons' scheme.

Gregory can play outside linebacker or defensive end and has rare agility and movement skills in space. He dominated at a low weight at Nebraska, and while he may never be a true 4-3 defensive end, the Falcons don't need him to be. They need him to be an attacking, aggressive, athletic edge-rusher, which he is."

Change from previous pick: Shane Ray, OLB, Missouri

Alvin "Bud" Dupree, OLB/DE, Kentucky

"What happens if Atlanta decides that Randy Gregory's drug issues are too much? They can easily pass on him if Dupree is still on the board. The Falcons may have signed Brooks Reed, but Dupree is better suited to play Leo if the Falcons do utilize the hybrid position like head coach Dan Quinn did in Seattle."

Change from previous pick: Randy Gregory, OLB, Nebraska

Leading Vote-Getters

  1. Vic Beasley (3), Randy Gregory (3)
  1. Shane Ray (2), Alvin "Bud" Dupree (2)
  1. La'el Collins (1)
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