The Atlanta Falcons are well on their way to a playoff berth.
They are built to run deep into the playoffs, as this fine group of professionals has put together an outstanding offensive ball club as well as a defense that can hold its own against anyone.
With an offense led by a Pro Bowl-caliber quarterback and a stellar, veteran-led defense, Atlanta is in the midst of its finest hour.
Such a run did certainly not happen overnight.
As a heartbroken owner Arthur Blank had to settle for his No. 2 choice at general manager. He could do nothing but hope that this 42-year-old former New England Patriot executive could turn his organization around.
After losing potential candidate Bill Parcells, who halted negotiations to join the Miami Dolphins organization, Blank had to settle for his second choice—a second choice that would lead the Atlanta Falcons to the brightest stage in their history.
Almost three years later, Blank could not be happier with his choice. Drafting impact players like Matt Ryan, William Moore, Thomas DeCoud, Curtis Lofton and Kroy Biermann, "second choice" general manager Thomas Dimitroff has built the Falcons into a championship organization.
Who will he add to the Falcons' legacy this April? Will he select the next Deion Sanders? The next Jessie Tuggle? Though the Falcons will certainly not have top picks in this year's draft, Dimitroff's history with New England shows that there are late-round treasures that can be found from other teams' trash.
Truth be told, the Falcons desperately need to add some depth to their secondary. Even with Moore and DeCoud emerging as impact players in the second level, their work is for naught if they do not have solid defenders working around them. The key to the 2011 draft for Atlanta is the secondary, and drafting an impact cornerback would be the goal.
Curtis Brown (CB) out of Texas may be just what the doctor ordered. Brown is a legit defensive back who is easily one of the most aggressive defensive players in this year's draft. He led the Longhorns in special teams tackles as a junior, which shows his ability to wrap up ball-carriers in the open field despite his small size.
Though he will not reel in a lot of interceptions, Brown is a guy that could become a safety in the NFL due to his hard-hitting grittiness.
Another potential draft choice is Ras-I Dowling (CB) out of Virginia. A bit bulkier than Brown, Dowling could be more helpful to a Falcons defense that is in desperate need of impact backs.
Dowling has some scouts saying that they puzzle over why he is ever beaten on routes, as his quickness often allows him to get to the ball before receivers. His stock may have to drop for him to fall to the Falcons, but having him in the secondary would greatly improve the defense.
Both of these talented defensive backs are likely high on Thomas Dimitroff's draft board.
The clock is already ticking for Atlanta. Whose name will the commissioner announce when it is the Falcons' turn to pick?