Mel Kiper has Falcons landing a new prospect in latest mock draft

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The Falcons have been mocked a handful of players. Tyree Wilson, Peter Skoronski, Myles Murphy, Joey Porter Jr., Paris Johnson Jr., and Christian Gonzalez have been the most popular selections, and I’ve talked about each one. Now, Mel Kiper has given us a new prospect to discuss in his latest mock draftWill McDonald IV.

Analysis: Falcons fans should be familiar with their pass-rushing woes from 2022 — just 21 sacks, second worst in the league — but they might not know much about McDonald. That should change, because McDonald dominated at the Senior Bowl and has moved into top-10 consideration. McDonald, who had 34 sacks in college, including two seasons with more than 10, is a speed rusher who flies around the edge to take down quarterbacks. At 241 pounds, he’s not going to be a fit for every defense, but smart coordinators will stand him up and let him use his speed.

McDonald had a down 2022 season with just five sacks, but the talent is there. He was unblockable at the Senior Bowl. First-year Atlanta defensive coordinator Ryan Nielsen should covet an edge rusher here to get his unit back on track. The Falcons are another team that could be in the market for a quarterback, but like Las Vegas, they need a passer who can play early. I don’t have one left on the board in this scenario.

The Falcons could use interior defenders, EDGE defenders, off-ball linebackers, and secondary pieces. All will positively affect the overall pass rush; however, the trenches are an often overlooked part of winning football teams because it’s not sexy. That is how you build a sustainable winner, regardless of the surrounding personnel.

Atlanta has a fantastic chance of landing a player that can impact immediately; hopefully, it’s on the defensive side of the ball because it is starving for top-end talent. Mel Kiper mentioning Will McDonald as a potential selection is the first I have seen of it, and I’m not too familiar with him as a player, but I’ll never be against adding a pass rusher with the kind of upside Kiper mentions.

What do you think about this Falcons mock draft?

Photographer: Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire
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