Posted: 4:03 pm Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

DEPTH CHART: Pioli and Nolan’s fingerprints on FA class 

By D. Orlando Ledbetter

Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff acknowledged that assistant general manager Scott Pioli and defensive coordinator Mike Nolan provided important background and character information on the free agency class.

Right guard Jon Asamoah and defensive end Tyson Jackson were drafted by Pioli when he was general manager of the Kansas City Chiefs. Defensive tackle Paul Soliai was with the Dolphins and played under Nolan and defensive line coach Bryan Cox, who also contributed information.

“Scott, like the rest of personnel department and our coaching staff, all had an important hand with the acquisition of our talent,” Dimitroff said. “Scott gave us background, character, personality and skill-set (information) for the players (who were) with the Chiefs organization.

“Like Mike Nolan and Bryan Cox gave us background on character, play and skill-set (information about) Paul Soliai, who played for the Dolphins. Everyone was very involved. This was a very collaborative group. All hands were on deck when it came to evaluating the players that we acquired.”

With the release of Thomas DeCoud and Tony Gonzalez, the Falcons still have holes at free safety and tight end.

Dimitroff said that the Falcons did look at the safety position in free agency. They want to upgrade the safety position.

“Our quest to become a better and more consistent defense was at the forefront of that decision,” Dimitroff said.

Taylor Lewan, NFL Draft, NFL, Atlanta Falcons, offense, Michigan Wolverines, college football, football

Michigan offensive lineman Taylor Lewan.

They have a plan for the tight end position.

“We’ll continue to look in free agency as well as potentially in the draft to shore up our tight end position,” Dimitroff said.

Green Bay’s Jermichael Finley is the best available free agent tight end, but has a medical issue with his neck. Detroit’s Brandon Pettigrew and Miami’s Dustin Keller are also available.

After the free agency frenzy, here’s what the projected Atlanta Falcons’ depth chart looks like.

OFFENSE

WR 11 Julio Jones, 83 Harry Douglas, 13 Darius Johnson

LT 72 Sam Baker, 76 Lamar Holmes, 74 Terren Jones

LG 63 Justin Blalock, 69 Harland Gunn

C 61 Joe Hawley, 66 Peter Konz

RG Jon Asamoah, 68 Gabe Carimi, 69 Harland Gunn

RT  Taylor Lewan or Jake Matthews (projected first round pick), 79 Mike Johnson, 76 Lamar Holmes, 73 Ryan Schraeder

TE Brandon Pettigrew (projected free agent signing), 80 Levine Toilolo, 81 Mickey Schuler

WR 84 Roddy White, 19 Drew Davis, 14 Dominique Croom

QB 2 Matt Ryan, 4 Dominique Davis, 12 Sean Renfree

RB 39 Steven Jackson, 32 Jacquizz Rodgers, 35 Antone Smith, 30 Josh Vaughan

FB 42 Patrick DiMarco, 34 Bradie Ewing

DEFENSE

RE Tyson Jackson, 50 Osi Umenyiora, 90 Stansly Maponga

DT Paul Soliai, 91 Corey Peters, 67 Adam Replogle

DT 95 Jonathan Babineaux, 92 Travian Robertson

LE 71 Kroy Bierman, 96 Jonathan Massaquoi, 98 Cliff Matthews, 93 Malliciah Goodman

OLB 59 Joplo Bartu, 71 Kroy Biermann

MLB 55 Paul Worrilow, 52 Akeem Dent

OLB 56 Sean Weatherspoon

CB 21 Desmond Trufant, 27 Robert McClain

CB 23 Robert Alford, 43 Jordan Mabin, 26 Saeed Lee

S 25 William Moore, 41 Zeke Motta

Kenny Ladler or Deone Bucannon projected second round pick, 36 Kemal Ishmael

SPECIALISTS

K 3 Matt Bryant

KO 5 Matt Bosher

P 5 Matt Bosher

KR 32 Jacquizz Rodgers

PR 27 Robert McClain, 23 Robert Alford

LS 47 Josh Harris

H 5 Matt Bosher

29 comments
58Supersports
58Supersports

Matthews over Lewan.... sign a free agent safety.  Get Pettigrew signed.

Let R White "the mouth"  go...release his a@@. stays hurt all the time anyway. 

JODILYN
JODILYN

Boy am I glad they let Decoud go!! It was almost like Christmas yesterday

Leviathan
Leviathan

Ladler ran a 4.70 forty at the combine so not sure how that benefits the Falcons. Bucannon is being listed as a SS but has the measurables. I do think the draft is the best place to get the FS but we do need a vet backup. As it stands the Falcons should come out of this draft with at least 2 starters maybe 3 and some much needed depth. Not sure SJax has much left. A solid RB should be on the menu in the mid rounds as well. 

reallygroovy
reallygroovy

UNLESS YOU PULL A WHAMMY AND GET SAMMY WATKINS, OR MIKE EVANS ,  TO REPALCE RODDY HE DID GET ARRESTED , SO YOU HAVE TO GO,  AND EITHER ONE IS  GOOD , MIKE EVANS IS ANOTHER GOLDEN TATE , AND no damnway will that defense be a 3-4 , no way , and osi is the de , not this retread from Kansas city,  this team is not that good yet and today they do nothing but tampa bay gets better more falcons will go back to the 80,s  and 90,s mode   LOSERS

DawgGoneIt
DawgGoneIt

I actually think picking up Jake Matthews to play right tackle would be a good move except I really want Khalil Mack lol. Matthews played right tackle before Luke Joeckel left then he shifted to left tackle and he looked just as good at RT as he does now at LT. He can play both. If we truly want to solidify this O-line, we'll draft Jake Matthews and plop him at RT to give us Baker, Blalock, Hawley, Asamoah, and Matthews. Would be a formidable O-line. 

ctfalconsfan
ctfalconsfan

I'm liking our OL if we can pick up an OT in the first round.

DL still needs work.. Our LB core is still awfull. Would be nice to and get a FA safety and LB before the draft.

- How much salary cap space could we save by cutting Quizz?? He's done nothing in 2 seasons and is certainly not a return threat. Time to part ways with him.

Also, call me crazy but I'm not a D Davis fan. He just doesn't have enough experience. Why not take a look at Matt Flynn or Rex Grossman?

JSSN
JSSN

@ Ledbetter

Is Pettigrew going to visit or are talking strictly to agents? Both of the NY teams are actively seeking TEs (especially the Giants), what's your feeling?

mave2124
mave2124

You forgot Cory Peters?  And why not project Barr or Mack at 6 for LB pass rush depth, especially if show more 3-4 looks. We can grab O-line in the second round and safety in the 3rd.

mave2124
mave2124

You forgot Cory Peters?  And why not project Barr or Mack at 6 for LB pass rush depth, especially if show more 3-4 looks. We can grab O-line in the second round and safety in the 3rd.


DawgGoneIt
DawgGoneIt

Tyson Jackson is not a pass rushing 4-3 DE. I don't know how many times I can say that. This will be a 3-4 defense! Wake up people! 


It'll be:


DE: Tyson Jackson

NG: Paul Soliai

DE: Jonathan Babineaux


OLB: Kroy Biermann

ILB: Sean Weatherspoon

ILB: Paul Worrilow

OLB: Khalil Mack (hopefully)


CB: Desmond Trufant

FS: who knows (Ha'Sean Clinton-Dix??)

SS: William Moore

CB: Robert Alford

Robb4242
Robb4242

So the assumption is we're staying with a base 4-3 even after the Soliai & Jackson signings?

DawgGoneIt
DawgGoneIt

No Corey Peters? Wake up D-led...he's still on the team!

AnsweredTHIS
AnsweredTHIS

frist = FIRST round........I got the spelling disease from JoeTess.

AnsweredTHIS
AnsweredTHIS

Since you put this out there Dled I see us going LB in the frist round...........man we are THIN at that spot!

DawgGoneIt
DawgGoneIt

@ctfalconsfan  I wouldn't call our LB core "awful"....could we use another LB or two? Sure but they're not awful as it stands right now. That Paul Worillow has a chance to be something special. His tackling ability is 2nd to none. I do agree that we could continue adding pieces to the DL and OL. Can never be too good up front.

JSSN
JSSN

@mave2124  

You're not going to see Peters until the end of camp. He may start the year on the PUP list

Robb4242
Robb4242

@DawgGoneIt  Absolutely DawgGoneIt.  No way we can stay in a base 4-3 with this personnel. 

DawgGoneIt
DawgGoneIt

@Robb4242  D-Led is so convinced we're sticking with the 4-3 when every indication says otherwise. The players we acquired are 3-4 type bodies/players.

JSSN
JSSN

@DawgGoneIt  

You do realize that Peters (while on the roster) is recovering from Achilles surgery.

DawgGoneIt
DawgGoneIt

@JSSN @DawgGoneIt  He's sure to get a place in the rotation when he gets healthy. Which should be before training camp

JSSN
JSSN

@DawgGoneIt

He had surgery on January 5th, the rehab on an Achilles under the best of circumstances is 6-8 months after you start the rehab process (not the surgery). He has to get in football shape following that. Peters has shown he's a slow healer (remember the foot injury?) You are being overly optimistic. You should let the man get ready and if he comes back then you pencil him in.