The Athletic has Falcons landing potential Kaleb McGary replacement in latest NFL mock draft

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The Falcons have plenty of areas to upgrade on the roster, and there might not be a more important impending free agent than Kaleb McGary. Coming off the best campaign of his career, the former first-round pick is set to test the open market, leaving a massive hole at right tackle.

Atlanta could choose to re-sign Kaleb McGary; he might be the best right tackle available in free agency, and he’s familiar with the scheme. So, that wouldn’t surprise me. It also wouldn’t surprise me if the Falcons somehow landed his replacement, and The Athletic’s Nick Baumgardner’s latest NFL mock draft has them potentially doing just that:

8. Atlanta Falcons: Paris Johnson Jr., OT, Ohio State

Paris Johnson Jr. started at guard and tackle during his time at Ohio State and hasn’t come close to playing his best football yet. An outstanding prospect in so many areas, Johnson’s length and general body control/play strength make him a mistake-eraser. He’s never out of a play, even if he screws it up, because he’s athletic enough to get back in. Johnson could be a star in time, and he’d fit right in with Arthur Smith’s hard-charging offense.

Jonhson is a candidate to replace McGary, but he could slot in at left guard if the Falcons chose to go that route. He’s one of the top tackles in this class and would be a fine pick; however, if I were to choose, I’d go with Georgia’s Broderick Jones over Paris Johnson.

Given Atlanta’s draft philosophy of selecting the best player available, fans shouldn’t expect a tackle to be chosen unless they’re the highest-graded player on the Falcons’ big board.

Over the last two drafts, the Falcons have shown their willingness to stick to the BPA philosophy; drafting pass catchers in back-to-back drafts and making Kyle Pitts the highest-drafted tight end in history. Falcons mock drafts regularly have the team landing a defender because that’s where the roster’s biggest needs lie, but that’s not how analysts and pundits should operate.

Photographer: Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire
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