FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. – The Falcons waited until the third round of the 2018 NFL Draft to select a defensive tackle – viewed by many as their top area of need – but they seem very pleased about the addition of South Florida's Deadrin Senat to the roster.
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"We're very excited," Quinn said. "We're going to put him at nose tackle and put him right into the mix with the other guys – with Jack [Crawford] and Grady [Jarrett] and all the guys inside. Let's let him come in and compete and battle. But he's got really good quickness for a big guy, strong, square and the effort and toughness and all the things we look for at that position."
Senat may not have been on many Falcons fans' radars, but he looks the part of an NFL defensive lineman. At 6-feet and 314 pounds, Senat is a compact and solid player for the Falcons in the middle of their defensive front.
At South Florida, he proved difficult for offensive linemen to move, even holding his own against double teams. In his four seasons with the Bulls, Senat recorded 178 tackles, 23.5 tackles for loss and seven sacks. While he seems better equipped to defend against the run in his first NFL season, there is a quickness to his game that offers upside for the Falcons' pass rush.
"I think he has, based on the system that he played in, he played really square," Quinn said. "He played a lot of nose tackle. It was just almost right, head-up, over the center sometimes. So, he probably has a better get-off than may indicate based on just some of his tape at South Florida. That said, we really think he is an active inside guy. He's got the strength to play all of the stuff and push the pocket. "It's a really good addition to our team. [He] stands for the right things, loves playing hard; those are the things that we like about him. We'll feature him in the right ways for him."