Takk McKinley has had an…interesting career in Atlanta. I won’t get into it all, but he’s never gotten a fair shake from me personally. When the Falcons moved up in the draft to get him, I was over the moon… I thought the team would select now All-Pro TJ Watt. McKinley obviously hasn’t turned out to be nearly as productive as Watt, but hindsight is 2020.
Looking at sacks only, McKinley has been a catastrophic bust. However, his pressures and advanced statistics show that he’s a little bit better than the stat sheet would indicate, which has continued to be the case in 2020.
Takk McKinley had 7 of the 14 pressures which was second to only Chris Jones (8) in week 1.
It goes to show you how bad ATL’s pass coverage was.
— #BringMeBieniemy (@mattkaroly) September 15, 2020
Lions starting D-line:
2 QB Hits, 4 Hurries, 6 Pressures, 1 Sack
13 QBH, 5 H, 18 P, 7.5 S
9 QBH, 4 H, 11 P, 3.5 S
-Takkarist McKinley(3 games for 0-5 Atl)
7 QBH, 1 H, 8 P, 1 S
Most teams have 1 player out producing entire Lions starting line
— Jeff Riger (@riger1984) October 16, 2020
McKinley has always been a pressure but no sack type pass-rusher. However, is he worth keeping around? Can Atlanta afford him? Can Atlanta afford to let him go? These are pretty difficult questions, especially considering the Falcons have a stand-in general manager.
The pass rush has been an issue for Atlanta since Vic Beasley‘s one explosive season, and consistency has been an even bigger problem. Is this team really going to hand McKinley a multi-year contract after Dante Fowler Jr.’s is already looking like a disaster? Even worse, will they repeat the sins of their past and not trade away assets in the final year of their contracts and lose them for next to nothing?
It’s not easy, but this team just doesn’t really look alive after a very deflating loss to Detroit. McKinley has already drawn ire from fans for his perceived lack of effort (sounds like another guy we know), and edge rusher will be a need in the upcoming draft regardless of if he stays or goes.
If you can unload Takk for a pick that would be higher than the projected compensation pick, you have to. Edges usually demand a premium price, but it would be insanely lucky to get 4th or 5th for McKinley as a rental. Regardless, if a contender is willing to pay the right price, you have to pull the trigger. Falcons trade talks will be heating up, and McKinley is one of many candidates that could be moved at the deadline. It’s highly unlikely they re-sign him this offseason, and the Falcons need to be hoarding picks for the new head coach and general manager.