What are the odds the Falcons land Deebo Samuel?

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With the NFL draft a little over a week away, the league had a bomb dropped on Wednesday when Jeff Darlington reported that Deebo Samuel officially requested a trade from the 49ers.

The explosive playmaker reportedly “wants to move on,” according to Adam Schefter, even if John Lynch and the San Francisco front office are ready to get a deal done. Samuel reportedly “has put a halt to everything for right now.” The Falcons, who currently boast one of the league’s worst receiving cores, have an obvious need for a pass catcher, but should they pursue the disgruntled star?

Trading for Samuel will require parting ways with several valuable draft picks as well as a lucrative, long-term deal. I don’t necessarily believe the Falcons are in a position to trade away any picks for any position that isn’t a premium position — quarterback, EDGE, etc. The Falcons aren’t one Deebo Samuel away from competing, even if it will kickstart the rebuild, and it’s not wise to build a roster from the outside in. Building out is much more sustainable.

Paying Samuel is also another hurdle the Falcons would have to climb, but it’s not as big of a deal as the compensation. Handing a receiver/running back $30 million AAV will never be my cup of tea, but the Falcons will be able to afford it going forward.

The team’s total cap liabilities are estimated to be just under $89 million next offseason, which puts them in a position to be big spenders come the spring of 2023. With the league’s salary cap estimated to rise to $220-225 million in 2023, the Falcons should have between $131-136 million in cap space. That’s plenty of room to fit Samuel’s new contract under.

The logistics would work out, but the team’s timeline doesn’t warrant trading for a player like Samuel. Atlanta doesn’t have a long-term solution at quarterback, and Marcus Mariota is in no position to lead this subpar roster to the playoffs. You can always find weapons before a signal caller, but I’d argue that money would be better spent on pass rushers and offensive linemen in free agency next spring.

Still, the prospect of a player like Samuel with Cordarrelle Patterson and Kyle Pitts in Arthur Smith’s offense is extremely enticing. The first-time head coach has already proven with Patterson that he can accentuate Samuel’s skillset.

I feel confident the Falcons won’t be trading for Samuel, but what does Vegas think about Atlanta’s odds of landing the former Gamecock?

Odds via OddsChecker

  • Jets +400 (20%)
  • Colts +600 (14.29%)
  • Falcons +800 (11.11%)
  • Saints +800 (11.11%)

Odds via BetOnline

  • Colts +450
  • Jets +500
  • Chiefs +550
  • Saints +550
  • Packers +600
  • Eagles +800
  • Ravens +1000
  • Falcons +1200
  • Lions +1200
  • Steelers +1200
  • Browns +1600
  • Patriots +1600
  • Broncos +2000
  • Cardinals +2000
  • Texans +2000
  • Bucs +2500

Depending on the betting outlet, the Falcons are either unlikely or extremely unlikely to land Samuel. It’s not that Atlanta can’t afford to pay him or give San Fran the compensation they desire; they’re just not one Deebo Samuel away from competing. And I think Terry Fontenot and oddsmakers realize that.

Photographer: Icon Sportswire
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