2008 NFL Mock Draft: Atlanta Falcons
1) NFL-Miami_Dolphins-2008_NFL_Draft_Strategy_The_Miami_Dolphins-230108">Miami Dolphins: Glenn Dorsey, DT, LSU
2) Rams-2008_NFL_Mock_Draft_St_Louis_Rams-250108">St. Louis Rams: Jake Long, OT, Michigan
The Longest Mock Draft in NFL History Continues...
We've reached the point in the Mock Draft where every team sucks equally.
So equally that, as of right now, we still don’t know for sure who’s picking third.
Here’s how it breaks down:
The Falcons, Raiders, Chiefs, and Jets all finished 4-12.
Either the Falcons or the Raiders will pick third.
The Jets don’t get to play because they sucked against better competition.
The Chiefs don’t get to play because they sucked less than the Raiders against common opponents.
So at the NFL Combine, the Raiders and Falcons will flip a coin. The winner picks third. The loser picks fourth—unless the Raiders win. If that happens, we get ANOTHER coin flip to decide if the Chiefs or Falcons pick fourth.
Coin flips are stupid, so until the NFL decides otherwise, we’re going with the Falcons picking third for a very simple reason: they were the worse of the two teams.
The Falcons lost by an awe-inspiring 10.93 points per game, while the Raiders lost by a slightly less embarrassing 7.18 points per game.
Plus, Al Davis is a schmuck and doesn’t deserve to pick third. So there.
Quick Falcons Update
The Falcons searched high and low for a new GM and head coach. They interviewed everyone from Bill Parcells to Pete Carroll. Marty Schottenheimer's name was tossed around the media. The Falcons left no stone unturned.
Eventually their GM search led to a guy named Thomas Dimitroff from the Patriots’ organization.
This was met with a universal yawn, followed by, “well, he did work for the Patriots.”
Thomas Dimitroff then settled on Mike Smith as head coach. This was met with a universal, “who the hell is Mike Smith?”
Followed by: “No, seriously, who the hell is Mike Smith?”
I have to think, given that Thomas Dimitroff was trained by Bill Belichick and Scott Pioli, that Mike Smith is the right guy for the job.
I’m also pretty confident that he knows how to run a system that knows how to hit on draft day.
This is a team in serious need of stability. Matt Ryan provides just that.
Ryan did quite a bit in the ACC with a less-than-stellar supporting cast. He ran NFL-style offenses, called his own plays, played hurt, showed tremendous leadership, and had a knack for taking over games.
He has the size NFL scouts love. He has the arm strength required to make every throw. He’s elusive in the pocket and shows decent speed (for a QB) when forced to scramble.
Best of all, he's a great guy off the field.
Point is, he’s no Mike Vick—and that’s exactly what the Falcons need.
The Falcons have some talent on offense, with Roddy White at WR, Alge Crumpler at TE, and a backfield that consists of the ageless Warrick Dunn and the speedy Jerious Norwood.
As hard as it is to believe, they’re not THAT far away.
Their season was destroyed by the self-destruction of their starting quarterback and a scumbag head coach who couldn't handle NFL players.
Under normal circumstances, they're at least two or three games better than the Raiders.
The Falcons are short a franchise QB—and Matt Ryan is the perfect guy for the job.
The Second Choice: Chris Long, DE, Virginia
Given the ties to the Patriots’ organization, you can expect the best remaining defensive lineman on the board to get a long look (no pun intended). Chris Long, as we’ve already discussed, is second only to Glenn Dorsey.
If the Falcons go defense, expect Long to be their guy.
Outside Possibility: Darren McFadden, RB, Arkansas
McFadden will probably be the top player on the Falcons draft board. If they stay true to their board, they could take him here.
ESPN DRAFT COVERAGE NOTE: This is the point in the draft where we get the first “How far will McFadden fall?” comment followed by the camera zooming in on an uncomfortable McFadden trying to act like he’s not concerned.
We all know he’s counting the money he’s losing every time his name isn’t called out. By far the best part of draft weekend.
Of course, there are rumors floating around that the Cowboys are going to stupidly trade the farm, the family car, a first-round pick, and Marion Barber III to move up to the first overall pick and select McFadden.
I’m so rooting for this to happen. Jerry Jones is a genius!
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