Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
Very few teams have the ability to admit a mistake with personnel. Atlanta is a team that's been known to hang onto players a few seasons too long, opposed to a team like the New England Patriots, who have cut unproductive second-round picks within the first couple of years of being selected.
To move forward with your franchise sometimes you have to trim the fat, so to speak.
Players That Need to be Jettisoned
DE Osi Umenyiora
Umenyiora was expected to fill the lofty shoes of former star end John Abraham. It's now safe to say that he could fit two of his feet into just one of Abe's shoes. Umenyiora did lead the team with 7.5 sacks, but four came against rookie quarterbacks, Mike Glennon (Tampa Bay) and Geno Smith (New York Jets). The Falcons could count on Abraham to be at at his best against the best competition and make clutch plays.
RB Steven Jackson
Jackson has been a great player throughout his entire career. His number will be retired in St. Louis where he had eight consecutive 1,000-yard seasons for the St. Louis Rams. But with 2,553 carries, Jackson isn't quite the player he used to be.
A team coming off 4-12 seasons don't need veteran backs on its roster. The Falcons are better off both drafting and acquiring younger backs.
DE/OLB Kroy Biermann
Biermann is a fan favorite for reasons that are unknown. His career high in sacks is five, which came way back in the 2009-10 season, and he doesn't do anything particularly well. He's known as a hybrid front seven player, someone who can rush the quarterback and drop back into coverage. Still, he has only three passes defensed for his entire career.
It's time to stop the madness, Atlanta. If Atlanta Hawks fan favorite Zaza Pachulia can be let go after doing not much of anything, Biermann should receive the same fate. Not to mention he's coming off a season-ending injury that limited him to two games in 2013.
Cutting Biermann would save the Falcons $3,050,000 in cap space, according to OverThe Cap.com. Use that money towards free agency.
S Thomas DeCoud
In my first official article covering the Falcons, after being switched by Bleacher Report from covering the New Orleans Saints, I made an argument as to why the Falcons should release starting safety Thomas DeCoud.
Others in the media have echoed that notion. And it appears, according to ESPN's Adam Caplan, letting DeCoud walk might be coming to fruition.
But the longer he stays on the team, the scarier it is! It's like Fright Night for fans of great safety play. It's time to collect on the $3 million in cap space DeCoud's jettisoning would provide.
Note: An addendum was applied to this article as running back Jason Snelling abruptly retired, according to Jay Adams of AtlantaFalcons.com. Snelling was a solid player throughout his tenure, but his time in a Falcons uniform should've been up regardless. The Falcons need to get more explosive at the position while also getting younger.