Falcons signing veteran CB Casey Hayward to 2-year, $11 million contract

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Although the Falcons offseason seems to be on hold waiting for Deshaun Watson, Atlanta’s front office might not be standing idly by as I expected. According to Ian Rapoport, the Falcons are signing Casey Hayward to bolster their secondary.

The Falcons went into the 2021 season with Fabian Moreau starting opposite A.J. Terrell, and I felt he performed admirably for his contract. Hayward isn’t the same player now as when he was an All-Pro in 2016 and 2017, but he is still plenty good enough to help most NFL defenses.

After starting his career in Green Bay, Hayward signed with the Chargers, where he thrived. It was one instant where the Packers let one of their ascending players go because they didn’t want to pay him, which turned out to be the wrong decision. After five excellent seasons with LA, he joined the rival Raiders on a one-year deal that he vastly over-performed.

Hayward started all 17 regular-season games, logged 46 tackles, broke up nine passes, had an interception, and was credited with a safety. His coverage stats were excellent for a player of any age, allowing completions on just 57.1% of his 56 targets, and opposing quarterbacks cumulatively had a 91.9 passer rating when targeting him in 2021.

The Falcons got a reliable veteran that can play man and zone coverage. I love this move by Terry Fontenot. For what it’s worth, Hayward’s agent also represents Deshaun Watson and AJ Terrell.

Photographer: Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire

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