Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Spor
At No. 6 overall, the Falcons need to get an impact pass-rusher. There's no ifs, ands or buts about it. They have the worst pass rush in the NFL, according to Pro Football Focus (subscription required), at a cumulative minus-39.6 grade. That means they have averaged out 40 points below league average.
For reference, the best team in the league is at a plus-53.8 in the Seattle Seahawks. The Falcons need to dramatically improve their pass rush, and they have three great options this year in Jadeveon Clowney, Khalil Mack and Anthony Barr.
In this scenario, I'm projecting Clowney to be gone. So, the Falcons will have to go with their second-best option in Khalil Mack. Mack is very similar to Von Miller on the field, and defensive coordinator Mike Nolan could find some creative ways to use the talented pass-rusher. However, an underrated part of Mack's game is his coverage ability.
With Nolan loving the Amoeba fronts, the Falcons could have Mack and Kroy Biermann both able to drop deep into coverage and really confuse defenses. He had an off-field issue stemming from a fight in practice, but other than that, he looks like the kind of player general manager Thomas Dimitroff tends to bring in, especially since he's a captain for the Buffalo Bulls.
2013: 13 Games Played, 100 Tackles, 19.0 Tackles for Loss, 10.5 Sacks, 6 QB Hurries, 3 Interceptions, 5 Fumbles Forced, 7 Pass Deflections, 2 Defensive Touchdowns
2012: 11 Games Played, 94 Tackles, 20.0 Tackles for Loss, 8.0 Sacks, 4 QB Hurries, 4 Fumbles Forced, 2 Pass Deflections, 1 Blocked Kick
2011: 12 Games Played, 65 Tackles, 20.5 Tackles for Loss, 5.5 Sacks, 13 QB Hurries, 1 Interception, 5 Fumbles Forced, 2 Pass Deflections, 1 Blocked Kick
2010: 12 Games Played, 68 Tackles, 14.5 Tackles for Loss, 4.5 Sacks, 8 QB Hurries, 2 Fumbles Forced, 10 Pass Deflections