*************2016 NFL DRAFT GRADES************

1.17 Keanu Neal, S, Florida

Neal was a fringe first rounder, not a mid-first rounder. He is raw overall as a prospect, and while he does fill the need, they should have found a way to get better talent.

C-

2.52 Deion Jones, LB, LSU

The Falcons HAD to get some help at linebacker, and Jones has good potential

3.81 Austin Hooper, TE, Stanford

I love this pick. The Falcons still haven't found any hope to replace Tony Gonzalez.

OVERALL GRADE: C+

Overall this was kind of a boring draft for the Falcons. They reached on their first two picks, but did find some upgrades

*************2015 NFL DRAFT GRADES************

1.8 Vic Beasley, DE/LB, Clemson

Good pick here. Some think this is a reach here, but the team is clearly better at getting to the QB after this.

B

2.42 Jalen Collins, CB, LSU

Collins has some off the field issues which was part of the reason he didn't start many games. He is physically gifted and flashes some huge traits, but don't be shocked if he ends up a safety sooner than later.

B-

3.73 Tevin Coleman, RB, Indiana

I don't get the Coleman love, but the value is more than fair here.

B+

4.107 Justin Hardy, WR, ECU

5.137 Grady Jarrett, DE/DT, Clemson

7.225 Jake Rodgers, OT, EWU

7.249 Akeem King, DB, SJ State

OVERALL GRADE:A

A great Falcons draft. 3.5 starters and every single guy could get good reps this year.

*************2014 NFL DRAFT GRADES************
 

1.6 Jake Matthews, OT, TAMU

The Falcons got the safest (most complete) pick in the draft at 6. How can you not like it.

A

2.37 Ra'Shede Hageman, DT, Minnesota

Hageman is a steal here. I thought he could end up being a steal for the Bears in the first round. His highlight film is just as impressive as Clowney's, and if he gives 100% he could be the best tackle in the game.

A

3.68 Dezmon Southward, S, Wisconsin

Nope. The team needed safety help, but Southward didn't need to go anywhere close to this early.

C-

4.103 Devonta Freeman, RB, FSU

4.139 Prince Shembo, LB, Notre Dame

5.147 Ricardo Allen, CB, Purdue

5.168 Marquis Spurill, LB, Syracus

7.253 Yawin Smallwood, LB, UConn

7.255 Tyler Starr, LB, South Dakota


OVERALL GRADE: B

The first two picks were fantastic. They got the cleanest player in the draft, and I love the 2nd round pick in Hageman who has Hall of Fame type potential.


*************2013 NFL DRAFT GRADES************


1.22 Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington

The Falcons needed some corner help badly, and they got a guy that can do a little bit of everything very well. He should be able to start at some point next season.

B

2.60 Robert Alford, CB, SE LA

More depth at corner for the Falcons. I'm not as high on Alford as most, but he is a solid value here.

4.127 Malliciah Goodman, DE, Clemson

4.133 Levine Toilolo, TE, Stanford

5.153 Stansly Maponga, DE, TCU

7.243, Kemal Ishmael, S, UCF

7.244 Zeke Motta, S, Notre Dame

7.249 Sean Renfree, QB, Duke


OVERALL GRADE: B

No complaints here. I do wish that there was a little more help in the trenches, but the value was good with almost every pick.


*************2012 NFL DRAFT GRADES************ 

2.55 Peter Konz, OG/C, Wisconsin

A lot of Falcon fans hated this pick, but Konz was arguably the BPA, and he has elite center potential. He also can slide over to guard as well.

B+

3.91 Lamar Holmes, OT, Southern Miss

I like that they are going after more offensive line help, but there were a few other guys that had more upside. Overall not too terrible.

B-

5.157 Bradie Ewing, FB, Wisconsin

I don't hate the pick, because he will help the offense gel a little more, but was he really the best weapon for them?

B-

5.164 Jonathon Massaquoi, DE, Troy

This is a pick that I like. The team lands a pass rusher with a lot of potential, and they got good value for him.

6.192 Charles Mitchell, S, Mississippi State

7.249 Travian Robertson, DT, South Carolina



OVERALL GRADE: C-

The Falcons didn't have a first round pick this year, and they drafted like they didn't have any picks. They also drafted like they didn't have many needs either. The team needed to land impact players to take the next step, and they ended up with a center, mid round lineman help, and a late round pass rusher. Eh. The Panthers got better this offseason. The Saints were already good (who knows with them), and the Bucs got much better this offseason. Did the Falcons really take a significant step forward?

 


*************2011 NFL DRAFT GRADES************ 

 Picks

1:6 Julio Jones, WR, Alabama

I like the pick up for the team, and I especially like how he improves the whole offense, but he isn't worth what he cost. In retrospect, I think the team could have possibly gotten Larry Fitzgerald for that much.

C

3:91 Akeem Dent, SLB, Georgia

Dent is a 3-4 MLB that will play SLB for the team. I don't hate the actual pick, but I do think that the team had much better needs that they could have addressed.

C

5:145 Quizz Rodgers, RB, Oregon State

Can't complain too much on this pick. I still wish the team would have addressed a few of their bigger needs in the draft, but the team is getting a top notch handcuff here.

B

6:192 Matt Bosher, P/K, Miami

I always love teams upgrading their special team studs, but I didn't have Bosher as even one of my top four punters. 

C-

7:210 Andrew Jackson, OG, Fresno State

Andrew Jackson was a pretty good late round prospect and it's hard to complain about a guy like him.

B+

7:230 Cliff Matthews, DE, South Carolina

If you had told me that the Falcons had spent their 5th round pick on Cliff Matthews, I'd probably tell you that it was a pretty decent pick. Well in the 7th it is hard to find a negative.

A

Draft Grade ?

The team traded essentially their whole draft and their best pick next year for a receiver and a SLB. I like Julio Jones and would have been ok with the Browns taking him, but the Falcons traded too much for him. One thing to think about is what the best receiver the team could have gotten for two first rounders, a second and two fours if they were able to trade with other teams. They might (not looking for a trade debate) have gotten Calvin Johnson, Larry Fitzgerald, or a different guy. It might not have been the best move for the team, but it is hard to legitimize Julio's value. 

In retrospect, the team could have spent very little to trade up in the 2nd round and end up with Derek Sherrod and Torrey Smith. If I had to honestly throw a grade out I think I would give the team a C because they lost a lot for their guy, but they do have some good talents they found throughout.

Draft Grade: B/D

The team put a lot of chips on the table to end up with Julio Jones, and if it works out then they will have a lot of potential for the future. I do honestly think they could have gotten a similar veteran for much cheaper, but Julio Jones is one of the most complete receiving prospects (even maybe more than AJ Green) that we have seen in a long time
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