Atlanta actually has some breathing room when it comes to salary cap space, and they could get even more room to operate if they trade Deion Jones after June 1st. It’s clear there are still multiple holes on this team, especially on the offensive and defensive lines, and there are several high-quality free agents available in the trenches. If you want to check out the offensive line free agent targets left on the market, you can find that here.
IDL Akiem Hicks
I’ve already talked about Hicks at length, and if the Falcons are going to scoop up a bunch of former Bears, why not get the best one available? Hicks has been one of the league’s best defensive ends since entering the league. He’s started 77 games over six seasons with the Bears, totaling 51 tackles for loss and 31 sacks. Standing 6’4” and weighing 335 pounds, Hicks fits exactly what Dean Pees wants to accomplish on defense. A veteran on the line would do wonders for the Falcons, which, other than Grady Jarret, is rife with inexperienced defensive players. Hicks has had some injury woes and seen a small dip in production, but he’s easily worth the risk here.
IDL Eddie Goldman
Remember what I said about scooping up the good former Bears? Same goes for Eddie Goldman. At 28-years-old, he is a solid run stuffer that can help the Falcons now and going forward. He isn’t the sexiest name available, but he’s pretty dependable, young, and should be fairly cheap.
EDGE Trey Flowers
Even though he never lived up to the big contract that Matt Patricia inked him to in Detroit, Trey Flowers is still a quality player that can stop the run and get to the quarterback. He played in a 3-4 in New England but was used in a 4-3 in Detroit. For the right price, they’d be getting a very talented pass rusher that still has some good football left in him.
IDL Larry Ogunjobi
Ogunjobi surprisingly registered seven sacks on a good Bengals defensive line, and he’s certainly a piece the Falcons could use up front. The issue is that he failed a physical after agreeing to a deal with the Bears back in March. If he’s healthy around June 1st, I’d like to see the Falcons take a flier on him.
EDGE Justin Houston
The Ravens placed a tender on Justin Houston, which means they have the right to match any offer he gets as an unrestricted free agent. The rumblings of Houston coming home have been around forever, and I think now would be a good time to bring him back to mentor some of Atlanta’s young pass rushers.
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