Posted: 7:52 am Monday, January 13th, 2014

DE Jadeveon Clowney or LT Jake Matthews? 

By D. Orlando Ledbetter

South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney.  (Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney.
(Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

The Falcons are picking sixth in the NFL draft.

Now, that they have their new offensive line and defensive line coaches, they’ll have a little break before heading to coach at the Senior Bowl.

The front office can turn its attention to studying the free agent class and getting ready for the draft, which will be held May 8-10.

The Falcons are elated that a record number of underclassmen have entered the draft because that may push a player of need to them in the first round and certainly will push a good player to them in the second round.

In the first round, they’ll have a good player to pick if they stay with the sixth pick.

They’ll have to figure out how to get the most bang for the pick. That question could be simply stated: Do you take South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney or Texas A&M left tackle Jake Matthews? They might have to trade up to get either one of them, but St. Louis and old pal Les Snead are sitting at No. 2. The Rams will at least listen to a respectable offer for their pick.

Here’s a look at Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff’s trading record:

Dimitroff made a trade in the draft to select Washington cornerback Desmond Trufant in the first round of the NFL draft. The Falcons traded with the St. Louis Rams to move up seven picks in the first-round. They gave up a third and sixth round pick.

The Falcons made a trade with Baltimore to move down seven spots in the third round to take tackle Lamar Holmes. They picked up a fifth round pick and selected defensive end Jonathan Massaquoi with the 164th overall pick. The Ravens picked up running back Bernard Pierce with the 84th pick the Falcons sent them. The Falcons gave up a seventh rounder (229 overall) to the Eagles in the Asante Samuel trade. The Eagles used that pick to select running back Bryce Brown.

There was the 5-for-1 mega-deal with Cleveland to move up 21 spots in order to land wide receiver Julio Jones. Later, in the fifth round after the spotlight was off the Falcons, he sent two picks to St. Louis in order to move up 10 spots to scoop up running back Jacquizz Rodgers.

Oklahoma cornerback Dominique Franks, who left school a year early, was slipping in the draft. Dimitroff sent two picks to St. Louis to move up 14 spots to acquire Franks. He’s played some nickel back and was the punt returner for most of last season.

Dimitroff felt he could get his guy by going back 13 spots in the fifth round. The Falcons made a deal to send their fifth-round pick to Dallas. They moved back 13 spots and picked up a seventh-round pick for their troubles. They drafted offensive lineman Garrett Reynolds in the fifth and Vance Walker in the seventh. Reynolds has opened the last two seasons as a starter at right guard. Walker was a contributor before signing with Oakland in free agency.

There was a run on left tackles. With the Falcons needing protection for Matt Ryan, Dimitroff sent two second-round picks and a fourth-round pick to Washington in order to move back into the first round and pick Sam Baker with the 21st overall pick. They also received third- and fifth-round picks. The Falcons used those picks to select wide receiver Harry Douglas (84th overall) and defensive end Kroy Biermann (154th).

116 comments
wellnessbuff
wellnessbuff

OREGON DE KHALIL MACK!!!  THE HUMAN FORKLIFT A.K.A BUM RUSH SPECIALIST!  SECOND COMING OF ED"TOO TALL"JONES
 

ctfalconsfan
ctfalconsfan

Clowney = Aundrey Bruce

He was a also the best player on the board in 87' I think..

Chris R.
Chris R.

Clowney is the best player in the draft ,Point.Blank.Period, If we don't somehow get Clowney i might just rescind my fanhood

McNasty
McNasty

@TheMonger


I hope you are better at selling whatever you sell than selling your talking points. Tats are OK if one doesn't act ignorant like the rap song "devounknown1000" posted on the Clowney video above.  I am NO Dled fan ( God help the CAU journalism students and AJC readers) and he should have taken it down by now. But I am a fan of our 2 time NFL executive of the year - TD. 

Mr. Monger please show us your evaluations of all the players in the last 4 NFL drafts. You evals on each player in the the Senior bowl and the combine, your individual player interview notes and Mr. Blanks authorization to draft. Not to mention FA evaluations. It just makes anyone who does not have the facts look foolish, superficial, hateful, technically incompetent and without a real grasp of what a NFL GM actually does. 

But I guess anybody can say anything because writing on here is for one's entertainment no matter how ridiculous.

I will be surprised if TD doesn't get 3 linemen,a linebacker and free safety help this off season with 

When you lower yourself to hiring criminals to perpetuate their criminal behavior on the football field your values are screwed up. You should be an Aint's fan, they do that.

devounknown1000
devounknown1000

2014 STARTER OL


MONROE, BLALOCK, ALEX, #99 GABE, #37 YANKEY


BACKUP


BAKER, HAWLEY, KONZ, LAMARR


Good solid line


GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



devounknown1000
devounknown1000

2014 STARTER DL


#6 CLOWNEY, JOSEPH, BAB, LAMARR


BACKUP


OSI, PETERS, #135 MCCULLERS, MASSQUOI


Deep and strong rotation


GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

devounknown1000
devounknown1000

FREE AGENT SIGNING


EUGENE MONROE OT


ALEX MACK CENTER


LAMARR HOUSTON DE / DT


LINVAL JOSEPH DT


GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!













devounknown1000
devounknown1000

MOCK DRAFT 2014


#6 JADEVEON CLOWNEY DE - The best player in the draft


#37 DAVID YANKEY - A BEAST CAN PLAY CENTER, OG, OT

Will be better than Jake Matthews plus can multiple positions


#68 KELVIN BENJAMIN TE - Add 10pounds and replace TG to become best TE in the NFL is a beast.


#99 GABE JACKSON OG - Big and strong and solid will he slide this far down ? SMH


#135 DANIEL MCCULLERS DT- A steal for Falcons if fall this far down


#166 ISAIAH CROWELL RB - Once considered the best Freshman in the country would come in and be a beast for Falcons. future starter have become a better person off the field also.


#199 J.C COPELAND FB - Falcons have not had a good solid FB since OBVE, will be a monster in protecting Ryan also open up monster holes for Isaiah Crowell.


GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



TheMonger
TheMonger

I've figured it out...D Orlando Ledbetter is Thomas Dimitroff....  He is his Online form.  Don't say anything bad about him.  I get it now, that is why D Orlando Ledbetter thinks Dimitroff is amazing, despite the facts.  It is because they are ONE.  Shush.... Nobody mention Peria Jerry, Chevis Jackson, Peter Konz, Garret Reynolds, William Middleton, Wilfrey Fontenot, Mike Johnson, Lawrence Sidbury, Cliff Matthews, Lamar Holmes, Johnathon Massaqoui, Bradie Ewing, Sam Baker, Sean Weatherspoon, Shann Schillinger, Zeke Motta, Kemal Ishmael, Akeem Dent, and Dominique Franks, and everything will be okay!!!  I understand not every draft pick can be a hit, but Dimitroff has whiffed on so many, it is downright ridiculous.  From the constantly injured (Weatherspoon, Baker, Ewing, Jerry),  to the under performing (Dent, Massaquoi, Franks) to the downright worst NFL players in the league that Dimitroff used a draft pick on (Konz, Reynolds, Jackson).  He is terrible at drafting.  So expect the Falcons with the number 6 pick in the draft to screw this up somehow.  The safe choices are Clowney, Matthews, Barr, and Mack.  However, the Falcons will likely select none of those and pick some guy from Savannah State because he has "Good Character" and was a "Team Captain".  I am just so sick of Dimitroff and these character picks.  THE REASON THE FALCONS LOST 12 GAMES AND GOT PUSHED AROUND ALL SEASON WAS BECAUSE THEY ARE SOFT ON THE LINES, PLAIN AND SIMPLE.  I WOULD LOVE FOR THEM TO DRAFT A GUY STRAIGHT OUT OF PRISON WITH TATTOOS AND MULTIPLE FELONIES IF HE CAN HELP DOMINATE A LINE OF SCRIMMAGE!!!!

TheMonger
TheMonger

"He’s played some nickel back and was the punt returner for most of last season"

This was D-Led, referring to Dominique Franks.  Franks was our punt returner last season?  Do you even watch the Falcons?  And when you say played "some" nickel back, are you referring to the five plays he played in all year, or is that a new term for sitting on the bench that I am unaware of?  How did you get your job again?

TheMonger
TheMonger

How retarded is this?  The poll question is who should the Falcons take with the 6th pick?  There are only 3 choices, as if the Falcons can only select from those 3 players, and two of the 3 (Matthews and Clowney) are most likely already gone by the 6th pick.  So basically your question, D-Led, is should the Falcons take Anthony Barr with the number 6 pick?  This is pathetic journalism to say the least, but I expect nothing less from AJC "journalists".  I would like to take Barr, but only if Khalil Mack is taken.  Mack to me has the most upside of every pass rusher in the draft.  I think Mack, Clowney, and Barr should be top 3 on Dimitroff's list, because our pass rush has been so horrific.  One of the three will be there.  Most likely Bridgewater, Manziell, and Matthews will use up 3 of the top 5 picks, so we will definitely have one, if not two of the premiere pass rushers in the draft available.  If for some crazy reason Matthews falls to us, then definitely pounce on him, but it won't happen, and I doubt Clowney will either.  Mack or Barr is the choice here.  The Falcons should upgrade the O-line in Free Agency with a guy like Eugene Monroe, or some other quality OT, and then draft a OG in the 2nd round,  Hopefully Gabe Jackson is still available.  A draft of Khalil Mack in the first, Gabe Jackson in the 2nd, and a FA pickup of Eugene Monroe would be Golden for the Falcons right now.

zuzu331
zuzu331

Logic Quiz: The Falcons had one of the very worst Offensive Lines in the NFL in 2013. Maybe one of the worst EVER.


Do you: a) pick a proven blue chip OT prospect that will protect a QB that has been mercilessly killed all year long


           b) take a risky flashy 'name' choice that every NFL executive is admitting is a gamble-a 'boom or bust' prospect


            c)Whaa? Huhhh? Saints Rule!!! Ryan is punk booty!! Who Dat!!??


            d)polish your Oakleys and pick a new WR

DOrlandoLedbetter
DOrlandoLedbetter moderator

Thanks for all of the good comments today. I like the new commenting tool.

DOrlandoLedbetter
DOrlandoLedbetter moderator

Keendaddy -- They could have a lot of cash with some cuts.

DOrlandoLedbetter
DOrlandoLedbetter moderator

UPDATED VOTING: Who should the Falcons take with the sixth pick? Total Votes: 4,472

keendaddy
keendaddy

If we go Defense, we need the best DT on the board ! We lack that serious push up the middle. Maybe FA, I don't know. We need so much. We got any money to spend this year?

FredMacmurray
FredMacmurray

If clowney is there at 6 take him.  DO NOT trade up to get him.  If anything trade down.  Of course that's assuming TD wont screw this up 

Wink77
Wink77

Question, at what pick should we address the departure of Gonzalez?  He was Ryan's number one target this year, yes we had injuries, but he was also our GO To GUY in the 13 - 3 season when we had Julio, White and the not on the RADAR Douglas, who stepped up BIG time this year.


I agree the defense needs a MARQUEE talent,  that coaches have to game plan for...Clowney  seems to be the only one with the that quality out the gate, unless we believe the press clipping & not the game film.

GameOfSpades
GameOfSpades

1st Round: Greg Robinson OT Auburn - Played in a run happy offense; very physical, fast, and athletic. 


2nd Round: Assuming that Cyrus Richardson will be gone, the Falcons need to draft Anthony Steen OG Alabama, he came from a gifted program that stessed strong Oline play, perhaps the most underrated reason for their championships. 


3rd Round: Call me crazy (some of you already have) but the Falcons should strongly look at Jeremiah Attacho DE/OLB GT , Telvin Smilth OLB Forida State, or Daniel McCullers DT Tennessee (Would make the ILB and DE's better with his run stuffer ability, would command double teams although with his massive size, fatigue could be an issue. 


4th Round: Josh Mauro DE Stanford or Ed Stinson DE Alabama 


Okay, that's all I got for now......

keendaddy
keendaddy

OT! OG! Clowney is good, but we need OL now. DL in FA...

HonestInformed
HonestInformed

Best OT available.......end of story.  (Matthews or Robinson look like the best selections)


Run fast and far from Clowney..........he will have some ESPN plays, but he will be more trouble than he is worth and he will not be an effective full time player. He has BUST written all over him.

FalconJames
FalconJames

I question whether Clowney will have the work ethic needed to be our first round pick. He has proven he has a lazy streak and is liable to be our Sam Baker of the defense. My pick would be Matthews, but I have feeling that Dimitroff will not find any value at the 6th pick and will trade out of the first round all together. He has a habit of making bad decisions and I can't see him changing for the good anytime soon.

Mora-less-Petrino
Mora-less-Petrino

Last night I looked over blogs for the Saints and Panthers, two playoff teams. Saints fans that posted think Brees is old, over paid, and his arm is shot, the team has made horrible 1st and 2nd round picks under Payton and Loomis, this player and that are overpaid underachievers, their playoff history is terrible, they missed their chance because they will not be as good next year, Graham is going to want too much money for a TE, etc.

Panther fans think the coaches are terrible, that this player and that are overpaid underachievers, Newton can't win the big game, their playoff history is terrible, the draft picks haven't panned out, and on and on.

Sound familiar? 

Twenty teams don't make the playoffs, and eleven of the twelve that do end their season with a loss. Everyone thinks their favorite team has issues that will be difficult to resolve. In the NFL, parity, salary caps, injuries, and scheduling can cause a teams fortunes to turn rather quickly.


 Gene Stallings perspective on coaching, "if you listen to the fans, you will soon be sitting with them."

 I'm sure Mike Smith and Tom Dimitroff have heard that quote!

Mike2112
Mike2112

JAKE MATTHEWS PERIOD. Clowney is trouble and give hime a fat pocket and he will spend more time in trouble , suspended , etc. then be on the field. Jake comes from a pedigree of football talent and knows how to protect the QB.

ctfalconsfan
ctfalconsfan

49% of you think we should draft Clowney!! Really??

This guy could have a great rookie season then be arrested 2-3x that offseason.

If the guy is a problem in college then multiple that by?X? once he's got that same poor attitude and millions of dollars it's only going to get worse.

Clowney = Aundrey Bruce

Falcons63
Falcons63

All of Baker's money won't be guaranteed, but some of it will be.  Last year was the 1st year of his new contract.  Maybe Dled could tell us the salary cap hit the team would have to take if they were to cut Baker.  At this point with his injury history I would be for it... unless there is a significant salary cap hit to be taken.

Leviathan
Leviathan

The speeding ticket doesn't bother me but when he asked( at the last minute) to not play in the Kentucky game, now that bothered me. A lot of people have opinions and most are based on little actual knowledge instead of one hit he put on a RB 2 years ago. When the topic of quitting or not wanting to play comes up that's a red flag for me. We can't afford to miss on this pick and I believe Dimitroff would probably pass on this kid anyway. Clowney on the surface, seems too concerned about the payday he'll get in the NFL. What happens when he gets a few million in signing bonus? Does he want to play through a little pain? I don't want to have to ask myself that as a GM so maybe this kid is not what we need. Not really sold on Matthews either though. His measurements look more like those of a guard at the pro level than a LT. I like the Robinson kid. If we could move back from 6 to say the 12th pick and pick up a mid 2nd rd pick(50th) and still get Robinson I would jump all over that deal if I'm Dimitroff. DO NOT draft Cyrus Kouandjio! Then you have the early 2nd and the 50th pick to further upgrade both lines. Then you throw in free agency and this could potentially go very well for the Falcons. I would cut Samuels, Steven Jackson, Osi and Stephen Nicholas would have to take a serious pay cut to stay on the roster. With a healthy Biermann returning and the experience that Massaquoi and Goodman got this year they can match the production Osi gave for a lot less money. Sign a vet safety to compete with DeCouldn't since there are some nice free agents FS out there as well. Sign or draft a nice young RB and we are right back in this division. There are some good RB's in free agency but RB's can now be found in the middle rounds of the draft that are very good. If I could pick up Greg Robinson, a DT(Timmy Jernigan) and DE in the 2nd Rd, free up cap space by cutting old guys and get a nice RB and a real FS in free agency that has some experience and can play, I'm happy with the direction I'm headed in. And you still have 3rd thru 7th rd picks to fortify depth at various positions. Just a thought.

JLTee
JLTee

Another point to consider: We're not going to take a real hit on the cap with Matt's contract until 2015. Julio will be re-upped or franchised. At that point, cap flexibility will be at a premium and it will be difficult to bring playmakers  on defense in through F/A. Thus, we have to get a young talent in here that's a difference maker through the draft to address the DE position.It's time to make that investment now. Get your vet Olineman in March-April. When the draft comes, get Barr or Clowney. 

The Dline needs young playmakers. Matt needs competent guys upfront to protect him. Go young on D and experienced on the Oline.  

DOrlandoLedbetter
DOrlandoLedbetter moderator

@GameOfSpades Here Jamie Dukes on 92.9 the Game today saying they should take Robinson at 6, even over Matthews if I heard that correctly. 

FalconJames
FalconJames

@GameOfSpades  "Call me crazy".......OK, you are crazy.  Seriously, some interesting names. Did not watch Attacho at all. Will look him up. I like Telvin Smith, but not McCullers.  I think 3rd round needs to be lineman OL or DL. Just best available. I think with Beirman coming back and Weatherspoon, we are good at LB.  Wouldn;t mind seeing a Safety in there somewhere. 

FalconJames
FalconJames

@Mora-less-Petrino Interesting post. It sounds to me that some of the Falcon fair weather fans jumped ship on us. I guess we can expect them back now that the Saint and Panther are done. 

AnsweredTHIS
AnsweredTHIS

@ctfalconsfan

Be careful about making comparisons of Clowney and Bruce....I think when draft time came around last year my response was that drafting the "right guy" is not a science it is more of luck! The draft is not made in the first one but in rounds 3-5! Just because Clowney is a black guy who is physically gifted and who got double and tripled team does not make him Bruce. Bruce was expected to be the next LT when he came out of school and to this day, no one has ever fit that mold! He was a bust because of the pressure and the pressure of coming to a stinking Falcons team. Temper your criticism on this kid; Bruce and Clowney are two totally different players....totally different! If you want to compare him to someone I think a good comparison would be JPP; that's Jason Pierre Paul ( with more seasoning and more cameras on him because he was a SEC player). I think and this is IMHO, we will be lucky to have him.....but we need a lineman first! And not a tackle....we need guards!!! But Matthews will do nice if you can find some FA guards.

JSSN
JSSN

@Leviathan  The hit wasn't two years ago, it was New year's Day 2013.


"but when he asked( at the last minute) to not play in the Kentucky game, now that bothered me."


Ask Aaron Murray how that works. He should not have come back.

JSSN
JSSN

@FalconJames

"I thought we drafted a TE 2 years ago for TG to mentor."


Who? Palmer? He's a journeymen and nearly out of the league. You drafted Toilolo from Stanford in 2013 as the next TE. There was no extended "mentoring" because the Falcons excused #88 from the early preseason. Don't get me started on Coffman.

GameOfSpades
GameOfSpades

@DOrlandoLedbetter@GameOfSpades 

Agreed DOrlandoLedbetter, it's so rare to see an LT such as Robinson, he has an LT's size but he is fast, discipline, strong, and he came from a run happy offense, but pass blocks very well. I believe someone on here said it already, but I truly believe that Robinson's ceiling is better than Matthews overall. 

GameOfSpades
GameOfSpades

@FalconJames

Iol... I have been called crazy a few times (literally), I do prefer Telvin the 3rd round, but I truly also believe that the lack of a big, physical DT is the number one problem with this defense.... No interior push from both the Oline and Dline is the hangnail of this team right now.... A huge (somewhat nasty) DT such as McCullers is the type of player that the Falcons are lacking.... Sorry to say (for the Peria Jerry Fans) but he has got to go!!!! A strong and BIG NT not only helps make the opposite team more one dimensional, it makes the DE's and especially the ILB better because that physical, BIG NT would command a double team at the very most which would open up gaps for the the LB's and take any type of double team pressure off the DE's (assuming that the current one's,draft picks,FA's, etc) will actually be able to get off one on one blocking next year. Players such as Babs would be in beast mode with such a huge pressence playing right next to him..... My only issue with players such as McCullers, Vince Wilfork, etc are fatigue issues do to their enormous size. 

Leviathan
Leviathan

@Falcons63 Looks like we are stuck with Sam for a while. Not his fault though. Dimitroff played himself into that corner last season.

JSSN
JSSN

@KevinAiken 

Has Turner stopped that habit of lunging and overextending in his approach with his hands and upper body? That and that is what has kept him from being mentioned with those FBS prospects. He can be fine if ever plants himself like an anchor more.

GameOfSpades
GameOfSpades

@KevinAiken

I like Clowney, I really do.... I would love to see him in a Falcons uniform next season.... However, you have to look at the big picture at the moment. 1) There is a chance that Clowney will be gone by the #6 pick. 2) Clowney just didn't look all that great this past season, true; it was his Senior year and he probably was playing not to get (more injured), he had some injury issues and I applaud him for playing through the pain this year. However, do the Falcons take a chance and draft who could perhaps be another Ray Edwards? But perhaps Clowney may turn out to be another John Abraham... Who knows? As Far as Watkins goes, I really hope you were being sarcastic, if not, I think you need to seriously evaluate the Falcons BIG needs....

KevinAiken
KevinAiken

Why is everyone on the all hype guys like Matthews and Robinson.  Either one is no better than Jake Long. We see how that has played out.   The pick should be Clowney or Watkins.  The best tackle in the draft can be grabbed in the second round.   D Lead i'll do your job for you.  Take a look at Billy Turner and tell me Matthews and or Robinson is that much better is better at all.   The all hype guys are just that, HYPE.  Jamie Dukes and everyone else are repeating the same ole crap.  Do your job. Tell the people what kind of talent is truly out there regarding O-Line guys since that's what the focus is on this off season.