After the draft, the Falcons signed 16 undrafted free agents. There’s a possibility nothing comes from this group, but the best scouting teams can usually find a diamond in the rough at this stage. Most recently, the Falcons dug up Brian Poole before the 2016 season. Poole started three years for the team at cornerback. In 2013, Atlanta signed Ryan Schraeder out of Valdosta State. He became a perennial starter up until last year and was cut this offseason. So who is going to be the needle in the haystack of this year’s class?
Devon Johnson, OT, Ferris State
The Falcons made it evident this offseason how badly they wanted to bolster their offensive line. They added four new names to the group and will be looking for the five best players that can protect Matt Ryan. Johnson was actually invited to the NFL Combine and performed pretty well, showing off tremendous size and strength. His 6’7″, 315-pound build with ideal length gives him the potential to make it in this league. Johnson could be a project worthwhile for a team that’s primary focus will be protecting Matt Ryan for years to come.
Chandler Miller, C, Tulsa
Did I mention the Falcons are looking to overhaul the offensive line? Miller started at center for three years at Tulsa and was All-Conference two times. He has good size at 6’3″, 297 pounds. If Miller can compete with the likes of Wes Schweitzer, he could find himself sticking around for a while.
Jayson Stanley, CB, Georgia
This is the most intriguing signing on the list for a few reasons. Most importantly, to all those Georgia fans out there that don’t stop complaining about the Falcons never having Georgia players, they at least signed one. Be happy. Secondly, Stanley plans to switch from wide receiver to cornerback for the Falcons. This is all you need to know: the former Georgia receiver is 6’2″, over 200 pounds, and ran a 4.37 at Pro-Day. That’s Dan Quinn’s ideal cornerback in a nutshell. We will see if Stanley can make the transition.
Olamide Zaccheaus, WR, Virginia
Zaccheaus has emerged as the most universally loved signing of this undrafted free agent class. The speedster from Virginia increased his workload each season in college, culminating with 93 catches for 1,058 yards and nine touchdowns. That led to him earning first-team All-ACC honors. Zaccheaus left Virginia as the all-time leader in receptions and second in yards. In his final game, he scored three touchdowns against South Carolina in the Belk Bowl. The Falcons could use a slot receiver with the speed and one-cut ability like Zaccheaus. He has a decent chance of making the team.
Del’Shawn Phillips, LB, Illinois
The Falcons lack quality depth at the linebacker position. Sb Nation’s, The Champagne Room, projected Phillips as a third-round pick before the 2018 season. It was a bit of overly biased analysis, but it’s worth noting how high some fans of the team felt about their linebacker. He has excellent size, speed, and athleticism that will play at the NFL level. Phillips will have a legit opportunity to make some noise and earn his way onto the squad.
Jaelin Robinson, OT, Temple
Another huge offensive tackle, Robinson will compete for a spot on the practice squad in a developmental role. He’s 6’6″, 325 pounds, making him a fit at right tackle.