NFL Draft Rumors: Falcons Sending Scouts to Trey Lance's Pro Day Amid Trade Buzz

Jenna CiccotelliAnalyst IIApril 17, 2021

North Dakota State quarterback Trey Lance rushes against Central Arkansas in the first quarter of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 3, 2020, in Fargo, N.D. North Dakota State won 39-28. (AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn)
Bruce Kluckhohn/Associated Press

The Atlanta Falcons are continuing to prepare as if they'll select with the No. 4 pick in this year's draft, even amid a recent report from ESPN's Adam Schefter that suggested they were willing to part with it. 

Atlanta will send its full allocation of three staffers to Trey Lance's second Pro Day, which is set for Monday at North Dakota State, according to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero. Those three individuals will be different than the three people who attended his first workout, with the team taking a similar approach to the one it used with Justin Fields. 

In February, general manager Terry Fontenot said he thought choosing at No. 4 was "a prime spot." 

The Falcons have the opportunity to influence the rest of the draft, since it's expected that three quarterbacks will go with the first three picks between the Jacksonville Jaguars, New York Jets and San Francisco 49ers, who traded up for that slot in late March. 

The Falcons are locked in to Matt Ryan under center, having restructured his contract to get under the salary cap in a move that made his contract worth $40.5 million in dead money if he's cut or traded before June 1 in 2022 and more than $15 million the year after, per Spotrac.

But Ryan is about to turn 36, and with a loaded quarterback class, the Falcons could use their high selection to ensure they have a future under center. 

Putting extra eyes on Lance is even more important than doing so with the rest of the quarterback class, since he brings a limited portfolio to the pros. He only made 13 starts throughout his career and just one in the past season, so he likely isn't as NFL-ready as his peers on the top of draft boards.

In 2019, he threw for 2,786 yards and 28 touchdowns with zero interceptions while also rushing for 1,110 yards and 14 scores.

His need for an extra developmental push makes him an almost-perfect match with the Falcons should they choose to draft him on April 29.