Falcons land SEC pass rusher and pass catcher in 2 round mock draft

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 02 Duke s Mayo Classic North Carolina vs South Carolina

The Falcons could become contenders in one swift offseason, depending on how the quarterback situation shakes out of course.

If the club elects to roll with Justin Fields or one of the prospects that could be available in the draft, that won’t be the case. However, if the Falcons acquire a veteran like Kirk Cousins or Baker Mayfield, the possibility of competing seriously in the NFC becomes real.

The Falcons would be able to use their valuable draft capital to surround Mayfield or Cousins with as much talent as possible, and that’s exactly what Jordan Reid of ESPN¬†has Terry Fontenot doing in his latest mock draft, dipping into the SEC for a pass rusher and pass catcher in Dallas Turner and Xavier Lagette.

8. Atlanta Falcons

Dallas Turner, EDGE, Alabama

Atlanta has leaned heavily on offense in the first round over the past few years, but I think GM Terry Fontenot will go defense this time around. With the way this board fell, he can get the best prospect in the class on that side of the ball. At 6-3 and 247 pounds, Turner is a long and explosive pass-rusher who has continued to improve every season. Atlanta was last in pass rush win rate last season (30.9%), but Turner can help; he posted 10 sacks and got pressure 16.7% of the time in 2023 (both top 10 in the FBS).

43. Atlanta Falcons

Xavier Legette, WR, South Carolina

Washington’s Michael Penix Jr. could make a lot of sense here, but I still think the Falcons will take the veteran route to find a QB. Despite already having high-end playmakers all over the offense, Atlanta could land another explosive pass-catcher in Legette for whoever ends up under center. He had a great combine, and I see an NFL-ready frame (6-1, 221 pounds) and strong hands on tape.

The idea of finally adding a highly touted pass rushing prospect seems almost unreal. It’s been a weak point of the Falcons for more than a decade, and a second-round pick in Arnold Ebiketie isn’t the fix. Dallas Turner would give Atlanta a strong, young duo at the position and possibly a long-term answer to the problem.

In the second round, the Falcons could go in a number of different directions. Roman Wilson out of Michigan or Ladd McConkey out of Georgia would be equally exciting selections for a Falcons team that needs another pass catcher to pair with Drake London.

If the Falcons do go the veteran route at the quarterback position, it opens up so many possibilities for Atlanta in the draft.

Photographer: John Byrum/Icon Sportswire
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