The Falcons’ top remaining needs after first wave of free agency

The Falcons have been a bit more active during the first days of free agency than some might have expected, and they addressed possibly their biggest need.

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By signing guards Jamon Brown and James Carpenter, Atlanta now has two enticing options to plug in at guard. Factoring in Brandon Fusco and Wes Schweitzer, the Falcons have a good group of four at that position heading into training camp. They may still add to that position in the draft, but they made it a clear area of emphasis in free agency.

With one of their biggest needs filled, what other areas do the Falcons need to target as free agency continues? Here are the top three remaining needs.

Defensive tackle: Entering the offseason, many expected the Falcons to address the interior of their offensive and defensive line. They did that for the offense, but they have yet to do so on defense.

Given the high quality of talent and depth at defensive tackle in this year’s draft class, the Falcons may be waiting until the end of April to add one or multiple players at the position. It is still possible, however, that Atlanta picks up a defensive tackle as we settle into the calmer days of free agency.

Falcons on the roster now at that position:

  • Grady Jarrett
  • Jack Crawford
  • Deadrin Senat
  • Michael Bennett
  • Justin Zimmer
  • Jacob Tuioti-Mariner

Defensive end: The Falcons don’t appear ready to give up on Vic Beasley just yet, and Takk McKinley showed some improvement in his second season, yet Atlanta still can add more firepower to its pass rush. As of now, the Falcons only have three defensive ends on the roster, so they will need to add at least a couple more bodies at that spot prior to training camp.

Like defensive tackle, the Falcons could opt to address this position through the draft. Given Beasley and McKinley’s presence, however, Atlanta may seek to fill in the depth behind those two rather than go after player with a high price tag.

Falcons on the roster now at that position:

  • Vic Beasley
  • Takk McKinley
  • Steven Means

Cornerback: After Brian Poole agreed to a one-year deal with the New York Jets, the Falcons were forced to abandon hope that he would return to Atlanta on a more affordable contract. Now, the team needs to add depth to its secondary. Presumably, Desmond Trufant and Isaiah Oliver will be the starting cornerbacks, Ricardo Allen and Keanu Neal the starting safeties, and Damontae Kazee taking over the nickel corner spot.

Behind those five, however, there is really only Blidi Wreh-Wilson and Sharrod Neasman. There could be some affordable veteran defensive backs on the open market in the coming weeks, but it’s also a position the Falcons may target in the draft.

Falcons on the roster now at that position:

  • Isaiah Oliver
  • Desmond Trufant
  • Blidi Wreh-Wilson
  • Taveze Calhoun
  • Ryan Neal

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