Despite $180 million QB, Falcons are still one-foot-in, one-foot-out

DKB220911081 no vs atl

Ever since Terry Fontenot took over for Thomas Dimitroff, the Falcons have seemingly been making it up as they go along, just a complete scatterbrain operation.

With Matt Ryan in the twilight years of his career and no salary cap flexibility, Atlanta made Kyle Pitts the highest-drafted tight end in league history, signaling to the rest of the league they would be competing.

A 7-10 finish was probably better than most expected and gave the fan base hope. Then, in the Fontenot-Smith regime’s second offseason, turmoil struck. Pursuing Deshaun Watson alienated a portion of the fan base and, most importantly, the greatest Falcon of all time in Matt Ryan.

The result? Marcus Mariota and Desmond Ridder. It was uninspiring, but the Falcons took another pass catcher in the first round, and a vision started to become clear. Maybe the team would try to skate by with an average signal caller and an elite supporting cast.

That notion continued last season when the Falcons took a third-straight skill player in the top 10. They were able to fill out the defense in free agency, and this roster was finally in a place to compete.

Quarterback play ultimately held the Falcons back and cost Arthur Smith his job. Whoever took over would be tasked with fixing the single most pressing roster need, and Raheem Morris immediately acknowledged as much.

It seemed the Falcons had finally got an adult in the building, and a plan was coming together when they inked Kirk Cousins to the largest free agent contract of the offseason.

Atlanta finally had a competent signal caller to maximize their three first-round skill players. It was clear that the Falcons were going all-in… right?

Well, that was the thought process at first. Cousins made the Falcons betting favorites to win the NFC South, and with another top 10 draft pick to bolster the defense or give the offense another weapon, there was hope they could actually compete in a wide open conference.

The Falcons then signaled they aren’t fully invested in winning in 2024, drafting Michael Penix Jr. with the 8th overall pick. However, they just spent a boatload of money on Jessie Bates, David Onyemata, and Kaden Elliss last year.

So, what in the hell exactly is the plan, Terry Fontenot? Does the Falcons GM think Cousins alone is enough to put them over the top?

I have no idea what they’re doing. The Falcons haven’t borrowed money from future years via restructures and took their hopeful franchise quarterback of the future, but just gave Kirk Cousins $100 million in guarantees?

There’s a lot of one-foot-in, one-foot-out moves from this franchise. At this point, they’re not able to maximize either Cousins’ or Penix’s respective contracts.

I can see the vision and respect the conviction in picking Michael Penix, but if you have so much confidence in Penix, why sign the most expensive quarterback on the free agent market?

The Falcons can’t have their cake and eat it too.

Photographer: Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire

Scroll to Top
%d bloggers like this: