Michael Harris II: “Falcons need to take [Stetson Bennett] in the first round”

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The Falcons are entering a pivotal offseason with more than enough resources to experience exponential growth. The team possesses about $56 million, the second-most in the NFL, in cap space with another top 10 draft pick. There isn’t a single position group that doesn’t need an influx of talent, including quarterback. And Braves phenom Michael Harris II voiced his vote for the team’s first-round pick: Georgia’s own Stetson Bennett.

“I think my Falcons need to take him in the first round,” Harris said at a recent press conference.

Prior to the 2022 campaign, many believed Bennett wouldn’t carve out an NFL career, and that he was only a game manager. That narrative has changed. The former walk-on elevated himself to a game changer, becoming the first quarterback to win back-to-back National Championships in the College Football Playoff era.

Bennett showed a different version of himself this past season than we’ve ever seen. He doesn’t have the strongest arm, elusive mobility, or any other elite tangibles. However, he is an insane competitor and knows how to lead a group of men.

Even though I love Michael Harris and the support he shows for the other Atlanta sports franchises, No. 8 overall is a little rich for Bennett. ESPN’s Mel Kiper believes he could go as high as the third round, but nobody should be surprised if he slides to Day 3.

The Falcons could go in any number of directions with their first-round pick. The pass rush is a prominent area of need. With Kaleb McGary potentially departing in free agency, right tackle becomes a pressing need. There are too many to even list, but the Falcons won’t prioritize what the roster needs.

Falcons GM Terry Fontenot has repeated ad nauseam that the club will select the best player available, regardless of position. So, Falcons fans should be prepared for anything, but I feel safe in saying it won’t be Stetson Bennett. Sorry, Braves and Georgia fans.

Photographer: Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire
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