Robert Mays, the host of The Athletic Football Show, had Terry Fontenot on the latest episode of the podcast. The two discussed a bevy of topics from the decision to deal Julio Jones, why Atlanta never considered a teardown, passing on a quarterback, and what the Falcons saw in Kyle Pitts.
🚨New Athletic Football Show!🚨
Falcons GM Terry Fontenot joins to chat about:
💥 The decision to deal Julio Jones
📈 Why Atlanta never considered a teardown
🤞 Passing on a QB at no. 4
🦄 What the Falcons saw in Kyle Pitts
And more. https://t.co/TGiO7lpXom
— Robert Mays (@robertmays) July 9, 2021
“We understand the team was 4-12 last year, hadn’t won in the last three years… Some people outside looking in would say, ‘hey, you should strip it down and completely go through a whole rebuild.’ If you know much about myself and where I’m from or much about Arthur Smith and his mindset, rebuilding doesn’t make any sense.” Terry Fontenot told Robert Mays.
It is clear the Falcons expect to compete right away with no intentions of tanking or stripping this roster down to its bones. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, though, a few months ago Arthur Smith said the same exact thing. “They hired the wrong guys if they thought we were going to lower expectations, take our time, and rebuild,” Smith said. “That’s just not who we are. The expectation is to win now, build for the future, have plans.
The plan is clear, and it is centered around Matt Ryan, who continues to be overlooked and doubted after a few losing seasons, even if they were statistically productive for the veteran quarterback. Still, Smith realizes what he has in Matty Ice. “With Matt, I see a really high-quality starting quarterback who’s thrown for 55,000 yards in this league and had an unbelievable experience and is still throwing guys open. It doesn’t sound absurd anymore to say, ‘Hey, I want to play till I’m 40.’ If he didn’t want to play, that would be a different set of problems. We still may not have taken a quarterback at 4 because soon as you take one, if you take the wrong guy, there’s some bad unintended consequences because right away, it’s like, ‘There’s your quarterback of the future.’ And if you take the wrong guy just because you want to win the press conference tonight, it’s like . . .”
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