Happy Mock Draft season, I guess. It’s way too early for all of this, but as most of you who read my stuff know, I really get into drafts. The Falcons are 0-2 and are currently tied for the lowest Super Bowl odds, so I’ll be using that metric to determine where they pick. I’ll give them the first pick for now, even though I don’t think that’s where they’ll finish. We’ll have some fun with it while we can.
Round 1, Pick 1: EDGE Will Anderson — Alabama
Will Anderson has had some big moments this year, but he put some bad tape out there against Texas. Bad game or no bad game, the Falcons have been sorely missing a generational pass rusher for years, and they shouldn’t pass up on one here. We aren’t sure what Desmond Ridder is, but we can be pretty sure what Will Anderson is — a dynamic defensive playmaker. Bryce Young and CJ Stroud have looked a bit shaky thus far, so I’d rather roll the dice on a guy like Anderson with Atlanta’s pass rush finally starting to show a heartbeat.
Round 2, Pick 32: CB Joey Porter Jr. — Penn State
The Dolphins had to give up their first-round pick, so I’m guessing the first pick of the second round will be the 32nd pick? Don’t quote me on that. The son of Steelers legend Joey Porter has significantly impacted the Nittany Lions’ defense so far in 2022. Porter is a lengthy and imposing corner at 6’2 and 200 pounds, but his nose for the football may be what’s most impressive. JPJ is constantly around the football, breaking up passes, and he’s a player you can move all around the secondary to support against the run. I considered a running back here, but it’s too early to get a read on when some of these day two prospects will go. Porter is definitely a defensive piece that you can build around, especially when paired with AJ Terrell, Richie Grant, and Jaylinn Hawkins.
Round 3, Pick 64: OT Warren McClendon — Georgia
Atlanta’s offensive line hasn’t been as bad as 2021, but they may still have to replace Kaleb McGary in the offseason. A group that may be Kirby Smart’s best offensive line yet is an excellent place to start. Although I think the Falcons made a mistake passing on Jamaree Salyer, McClendon is a solid plug-and-play right tackle. When it’s all said and done, McClendon should have about 30 starts at right tackle for the Dawgs. The preseason All-SEC tackle should be able to contribute right away.
Be sure to check in every Monday for Jake’s bi-weekly Mock Draft.
Photographer: Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire