As Falcons fans anxiously wait for Deshaun Watson to make his decision, the front office is indeed busy. Many believed — myself included — the Falcons were sitting idly by as Watson made his decision. However, Atlanta signed a flurry of free agents Thursday afternoon.
The Falcons are bringing in depth pieces in the secondary and in the trenches. Atlanta re-signs Colby Gossett and Anthony Rush — their in-house free agents. Gossett played in 14 games in 2021, making one start after being claimed off waivers from Cleveland. His most natural position is guard, though he showed some flexibility to kick out to tackle.
Rush, an undrafted free agent, has found a niche in Atlanta. Standing at 6-foot-4, 360 pounds, he’s the quintessential nose tackle in Dean Pees’ scheme, which had to be a catalyst for the Tyeler Davison release, other than the cap savings. Both big men are returning on one-year deals.
The two free agents that Atlanta signed off the market are both former Bears — defensive back Teez Tabor and offensive lineman Elijah Wilkinson. Given Atlanta’s connection to Chicago, this shouldn’t surprise anyone. Ryan Pace just recently joined the front office, while Dave Ragone and Charles London joined Arthur Smith’s staff at the beginning of his tenure.
Tabor has been a reserve safety and special teams contributor for much of his career, which won’t change in Atlanta. Falcons fans can expect him to be depth behind Richie Grant and Jaylinn Hawkins while contributing in the third phase.
I see the Wilkerson signing as a replacement for Matt Gono. He’s started 27 games in five seasons, most recently in Chicago. I wouldn’t expect Wilkerson to push Kaleb McGary for the starting right tackle position, but he’s fine as a swing tackle.