The Falcons roster is currently undergoing a lot of change with head coach Arthur Smith and general manager Terry Fontenot in their first year in Atlanta. There's been a significant amount of roster turnover, specifically on the defensive side of the ball.
Following the 2021 NFL Draft and the nine players the Falcons added, Atlanta is now tied with the Indianapolis Colts and Cleveland Browns for the eighth-youngest roster in the NFL. The average age for players on the Falcons' roster is 24.98.
This doesn't come as a surprise as several of Atlanta's starters are still on their first-year contracts. Wide receiver Calvin Ridley, guard Chris Lindstrom, tackle Kaleb McGary, tight end Hayden Hurst, linebacker Foye Oluokun, cornerbacks A.J. Terrell and Isaiah Oliver were all starters in 2020 and are playing on their rookie deals.
Rookie tight end Kyle Pitts is expected to play a significant role in the upcoming season and is only 20 years old. Center Matt Hennessy will compete for the starting job at center and he'll be heading into his second season as will linebacker Mykal Walker who contributed as a rookie – both are 23 years old.
Quarterback Matt Ryan is the oldest player on the Falcons' roster and just turned 36 years old. Wide receiver Julio Jones is 32 and left Jake Matthews is 29 and are both still playing at a high level when healthy.
While there's a lot of change that's taking place within the walls of the team's facility in Flowery Branch, Ga., the Falcons will enter the upcoming season with a lot of young, hungry players. The mix of youth with the veteran leadership Atlanta has in place with Pro Bowl defensive tackle Grady Jarrett, linebacker Deion Jones, Ryan and Jones, is exactly what Fontenot and Smith are excited about.
The Atlanta Falcons are in Flowery Branch for voluntary field work in Phase II of the offseason program. Take a look at the offense this week.