The Athletic: Falcons will likely pass on Jalen Carter, who will likely fall to #8

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During the Georiga Bulldogs’ run to a second straight national championship, Falcons fans watched in hopes of landing the most talented player on the field in Jalen Carter. It was a pipe dream until now.

Concern grows surrounding Carter, especially after his Pro Day in Athens. He showed up 9 pounds heavier than his weigh-in at the NFL Combine, less than two weeks prior, and only did position drills — no other testing.

Everything stems from charges against the former Bulldogs defender for reckless driving and racing the night of a fatal crash that took the lives of Georgia staffer Chandler LeCroy and offensive lineman Devin Willock. But things have escalated.

According to Josh Kendall of The Athletic, Carter will likely fall to the Falcons at #8, and fans should get used to the idea of the team passing on him.

“It once seemed a pipe dream that Carter would fall to Atlanta at No. 8. It now looks likely, and it looks equally as likely that the Falcons will let him go right by if he does. Atlanta fans need to start getting their minds wrapped around the fact that Carter is not coming to Flowery Branch,” Kendall said. 

Kendall says despite the legal troubles, the biggest concerns pertain to his work ethic. I can understand passing on a talented prospect because of questions regarding the desire to be great. Albert Haynesworth is the poster boy. However, nobody should be passing on Jalen Carter for his off-the-field issues.

In the NFL, if you’re talented enough, it doesn’t matter what you did/do off the field — i.e., Deshaun Watson. I don’t agree with it, but it’s the reality of the league. From the information currently available to the public, Jalen Carter’s “off-the-field issues” don’t warrant a free fall down draft boards.

However, if there are legitimate motivation issues, that could provide enough reasoning for Terry Fontenot and Arthur Smith to pass on the hometown product. The backlash from the fan base if the team does pass on Carter will be monstrous. 

Photographer: Joe Robbins/Icon Sportswire


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