Free agency is around the corner and the Falcons have a number of players currently on their roster who are scheduled to become free agents on March 17, the reported date for when the new league year will begin.
There are three main categories these free agents can fall under and here's a breakdown of what each designation means:
Unrestricted free agent (UFA): Any player with four or more accrued seasons and an expired contract; free to negotiate and sign with any team.
Restricted free agent (RFA): A player with three accrued seasons and an expired contract. RFAs are free to negotiate and sign with any team, but their original team can offer them one of various qualifying offers ("tenders") that come with the right of first refusal and/or draft-pick compensation. If the tender is withdrawn by a team, the RFA becomes an unrestricted free agent.
Exclusive rights free agent (ERFA): Any player with fewer than three accrued seasons and an expired contract. If his original team offers him a one-year contract at the league minimum (based on his credited seasons), the player cannot negotiate with other teams.
The full list of Falcons' players scheduled to become free agents is below.
Unrestricted free agents
Todd Gurley II, running back: Played in 15 games for the Falcons in 2020 and rushed for 678 yards on 195 carries and scored nine touchdowns.
Damontae Kazee, free safety:Before suffering an Achilles injury that ended his season, Kazee played in four games last season. Since being drafted in 2017, Kazee has recorded 10 interceptions, including a league-leading seven in 2018. Kazee has also recorded five forced fumbles in his career.
Alex Mack, center:Mack's 12th season in the NFL came to a close early when he suffered a concussion and missed the final two games of Atlanta's season. Mack has started 78 games for the Falcons.
Steven Means, defensive end:Means recorded three sacks and two forced fumbles in his second year with the Falcons.
Keanu Neal, strong safety:Following a two-year span that ended in season-ending injuries, Neal bounced back in a big way in 2020. In his 14 starts, Neal recorded 100 tackles, one interception and one fumble recovery.
Matt Schaub, quarterback:Schaub has played 16 years in the NFL and seven of those seasons have been with the Falcons. He played in one game in the 2020 season and has served as Matt Ryan's backup for the last four seasons. Schaub is set to retire.
Luke Stocker, tight end:Stocker played in all 16 games for Atlanta in his second season with the team.
Darqueze Dennard, cornerback:Dennard started six games for the Falcons last season and recorded 36 tackles and one interception.
Brian Hill, running back:Coming off his best season to date with the Falcons, Hill rushed for 465 yards and one touchdown in 2020. He also caught 25 passes for 199 yards.
John Wetzel, tackle: Wetzel played in six games for the Falcons over the last two years.
Charles Harris, defensive end: In his first season with the Falcons after being traded from the Miami Dolphins, Harris recorded three sacks.
Justin McCray, guard:McCray started two games for the Falcons last season.
Sharrod Neasman, safety:Neasman forced and recovered one fumble and recorded 27 tackles in his fifth season with the Falcons.
LaRoy Reynolds, linebacker:Reynolds saw action in all 16 games in 2020 and forced one fumble and tallied 12 tackles.
Blidi Wreh-Wilson, cornerback: Wreh-Wilson recorded three interceptions last season for Atlanta.
Edmond Robinson, linebacker: In his first season with the Falcons, Robinson played in 13 games and recorded 15 tackles.
Laquon Treadwell, wide receiver:Treadwell caught six passes for 49 yards and two touchdowns last season.
Restricted free agents
Matt Gono, tackle: Gono has spent the last two seasons filling many roles for the Falcons along the offensive line. He's played in 21 games in his two-year career in Atlanta.
Brandon Powell, wide receiver: Powell was primarily used as the Falcons' main returner last season but did see game action at receiver and scored two touchdowns.
Exclusive rights free agents
Younghoe Koo, kicker: Atlanta's Pro Bowl kicker in 2020 was one of the NFL's best special teams players all season long. Koo made 37 of his 39 field goal attempts and 33 of 36 extra point attempts.
Jacob Tuioti-Mariner, defensive tackle: Tuioti-Mariner played in all 16 games for the Falcons and recorded 31 tackles, five quarterback hits, three forced fumbles and one sack.
Jaeden Graham, tight end: Graham caught three passes for 25 yards last season.
Christian Blake, wide receiver: In his second season with the Falcons, Blake caught 13 passes for 141 yards.
Tyler Hall, cornerback: Hall played in nine games and recorded six tackles in the 2020 season.