Post-Combine Mock Draft has Falcons trading back into 1st round for QB

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 23 Rutgers at Michigan

With the NFL Combine over and the new league year a week away, the Falcons brass is gearing up for a pivotal couple of months.

Atlanta is strapped with over 40$ million to spend in free agency while owning the No. 8 pick along with their full allotment of draft capital and then some.

The biggest domino could fall rather soon too. The Falcons are expected to target Kirk Cousins in free agency, and if Atlanta comes with a fully guaranteed contract, something that the Vikings seem reluctant to do, a deal could come to fruition quickly.

Even still, the Falcons have to prepare for the draft, regardless of what happens at the quarterback position. Atlanta may go into the draft without a solution, which could force Terry Fontenot and Raheem Morris into a position of desperation.

Pro Football FocusĀ painted a scenario that could appeal to Falcons fans. In their post-combine mock draft, the Falcons take Jared Verse with the No. 8 pick.

Verse has improved as a pass-rusher every season in college and is coming off a season that saw him earn a career-high 90.8 pass-rushing grade that tied for seventh among edge defenders in this draft class.

Verse or Dallas Turner would be a great Day 1 for the Falcons. Each seems primed to be difference making pass rushers, but that’s not all PFF has the Falcons doing. In a trade back into the first round, Atlanta sends Baltimore a second-rounder, a third, a fourth, and a fifth-round pick for the Ravens’ first and third-rounders, which they use on J.J. McCarthy.

Ravens receive: A 2024 second-round pick (No. 43), a 2024 third-round pick (No. 79), a 2024 fourth-round pick (No. 110), a 2024 fifth-round pick (No. 142)

Falcons receive: A 2024 first-round pick (No. 30), a 2024 third-round pick (No. 93)

Moving back into the first round to lock in a fifth-year option for a quarterback and only really giving up a fourth and fifth-round pick feels like a win for Atlanta. McCarthy earned a 90.6 PFF grade this past season, fifth among all quarterbacks in this draft class.

For the Ravens, picking up an extra fourth- and fifth-round pick in a year where they could lose 10 starter-level players in free agency is a good way to retool this roster.

With a class deep into the middle rounds on the offensive line, edge defender, wide receiver and cornerback, those extra two picks could allow them to get a steal at a high-value position.

A lot of talk coming out of Indianapolis is that McCarthy could even go in the top 5. The Cardinals could trade back. The Giants at No. 6, Falcons at No. 8. Vikings at No. 11, Broncos at No. 12, and Raiders at No. 13 could all potentially take McCarthy if he falls.

It would be quite surprising if the reigning National Champion fell to the 30th pick.

Photographer: Bob Kupbens/Icon Sportswire

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