The Falcons’ evaluation process for draft prospects isn’t like a lot of other NFL clubs. Terry Fontenot and Arthur Smith place as much emphasis on who the person is as on who the player is — evident in their selection of Bijan Robinson over Jalen Carter.
Given the collegiate ties, Falcons fans, most of whom support the hometown Dawgs, were expectedly irate that Carter is on his way to Philadelphia instead of Atlanta.
The fact of the matter is the Falcons’ new regime might hold character above every other attribute when assessing a prospect, and Bijan Robinson’s red flags are nonexistent compared to Jalen Carter.
Nobody in Flowery Branch worries that Robinson won’t show up on Tuesdays with the same intensity and focus as he would on Sundays; the same cannot be said for Carter.
Add in the fact that there might not be a more talented prospect than Robinson, and the Falcons are very comfortable with their selection, but what sealed the deal for Fontenot and Smith? A trip to Austin with Ta’Quon Graham that included a BBQ dinner.
Arthur Smith says the moment he knew Bijan Robinson was their guy was when visiting him in Austin, having a great dinner at a BBQ joint with him and his former Texas teammate/current Falcon TQ Graham. Says Bijan isn’t a “made for Instagram” guy, is super genuine and a great fit. pic.twitter.com/L2kMoutzXd
— Kelly Price (@thekellyprice) April 28, 2023
Getting to know Bijan as a person is likely what sold the pair on him as a prospect. The Falcons’ preference in players is so transparent that anyone still complaining about the pick is just delusionally upset for personal reasons.
Everyone the Falcons sign in free agency or draft has one thing in common — high character. They’re leaders in some capacity with virtually zero concerns regarding who they are as human beings. And the Bijan Robinson selection reinforces that notion.
Photographer: Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire
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