Q&A with NFL Media's Gil Brandt

Reid Ferrin: What kind of season do you expect from the Falcons in 2014?

Gil Brandt: The offensive line is a lot better and with saying that, I think it should make the team a lot better. Also, I think that the new rules will help this team a lot, because they have two quality receivers and it's going to be harder for the defensive backs to tug on them, and whatever else they do. Matt Ryan is a strong-armed quarterback, so I think it should help their down-the-field attack this year. I also think that rookie RB Devonta Freeman will help this team.

RF: How would you best describe the impact of star WRs Roddy White and Julio Jones?

GB: They bring a lot to the team. Last year, if you could've taken the first part of Julio's season and the last part of White's season and put them together, I don't think there's ever been two guys with 1,500 yards in one year and with them healthy, you could probably have two 1,500-yard receivers.

RF: What have you seen from the rookie right tackle Jake Matthews?

GB: I know Jake Matthews well; the best way to describe Jake Matthews is he's proably like a five-year rookie coming in. I think all you have to do is watch him and see what his dad has taught him; this is probably his fifteenth training camp. The Falcons were very fortunate for him to fall where he did, because I think that they may have the player that plays the longest of anyone out of this draft. If the rest of the (Matthews) family has anything to do with it, 19 years and the most games by any offensive lineman, Jake's pretty good and you know the thing about him, he's like his father (Pro Football Hall of Fame OL Bruce Matthews) in that he can play three different positions, he can play center, guard and most important, the tackle position.

RF: What are your thoughts on the offseason improvement of the team's defensive line?

GB: I think that what they've done on defense is got some big guys; it's hard to play defense in this league and that's why I think what you have to do is play defense as good as you can, have a plus in turnovers and hope that the offense holds the ball for 32 minutes and keeps the defense out there for 28 (minutes).

RF: What impresses you about the Atlanta Falcons organization?

GB: They do everything so well around here. I mean, when you walk in here, and I don't know if the landscaping has anything to do with your football team or not, but the place is perfectly landscaped and everything they do here is way above the norm.

RF: How would you best describe QB Matt Ryan?

GB: If you drew up the model for a QB and said you want a guy that's smart, you want a guy that has a good arm, you want a guy that has accuracy, everything that a QB needs for success, he has showed that he has it. He's not going to allow the team to have a second-straight disappointing season.

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