The Falcons will be in the market for defenders to bolster the trenches. Atlanta had the worst pass rush in 2021 by a large margin; totaling 18 sacks while individual players such as T.J. Watt and Robert Quinn surpassed that mark. Embarrassing. The Falcons pass rush isn’t going to be fixed overnight. Dean Pees said so himself that the team needs better man coverage on the backend as well as better production from the pass rushers, a yin and yang situation.
The first step has to be acquiring better talent. Regardless of whether that infusion comes from the draft or free agency, the Falcons have to bring in more talented pass rushers than Steven Means, Jonathan Bullard, James Vaughters, and John Cominsky. A bevy of EDGE defenders should intrigue the Falcons, but there are also interior defenders with some pass rush chops.
One of those is former Georgia defender and National Champion Devonte Wyatt, who played an instrumental role in UGA’s title run. Wyatt is a large human being standing at 6-3, 315-pounds, but is also twitched-up. Men his size shouldn’t be able to move the way he does.
Devonte gets up the field very quickly with his impressive first step, but his size and strength also enable him to clog running lanes with the lower body flexibility to maintain gap integrity. Obviously, he isn’t as effective as his UGA teammate Jordan Davis handling repeated double teams, however, Wyatt is still a plus run defender with excellent lateral mobility, hand technique, and diagnosing skills.
Still, he’s most desirable because of his ability to pressure the quarterback from the interior. He’s quick and violent at the point of attack, a true pocket-collapser. For far too long, Grady Jarrett has been alone pressuring quarterbacks from the interior of the Falcons defensive line and Wyatt has the tools to take the pressure off Jarrett.
He would be a perfect fit for Dean Pees. Although Wyatt best projects as a 3-technique, he has the versatility to move up and down the line of scrimmage. Oh, yeah, Wyatt is also a fan of the Falcons and even worked out with Jarrett.
Devonte Wyatt made no bones about who his favorite NFL team is, telling a Pittsburgh writer “Steelers? I’m a Falcons fan.” Wyatt also said in the past he’s worked out with Grady Jarrett. pic.twitter.com/w33NY03LLG
— Anthony Dasher (@AnthonyDasher1) February 2, 2022
Photographer: Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire