Posted: 3:10 pm Monday, March 17th, 2014

Louisville’s Marcus Smith to work out for Falcons 

By D. Orlando Ledbetter

Photo: AP Miami quarterback Stephen Morris, lower left, fumbles the ball as he is hit by Louisville defensive end Marcus Smith (91) during the first half of the Russell Athletic Bowl NCAA college football game in Orlando, Fla.,

Photo: AP Miami quarterback Stephen Morris, lower left, fumbles the ball as he is hit by Louisville defensive end Marcus Smith (91) during the first half of the Russell Athletic Bowl NCAA college football game in Orlando, Fla.,

Falcons didn’t directly address their lack of a pass rush in free agency.

However, they have taken four defensive ends in recent drafts — Cliff Matthews, Jonathan Massaquoi, Malliciah Goodman and Stansly Maponga — and hope to get Kroy Biermann back next season from Achilles surgery. However, they appear ready to address the pass rush in the draft.

Lousiville’s Marcus Smith, a 6-foot-3, 252 pound defensive end/linebacker, said that he has a workout scheduled with the Falcons on Wednesday, according to Jody Demling, who’s at Louisville’s Pro Day. (He’s the publisher of Cardinal Authority, a http://Scout.com  site.)

Smith, who played from Columbus Hardaway High, is projected as a second/third-round pick by NFLDraftScout.com and is the 5th rated defensive end. He was on the North team in the Senior Bowl and played for the Falcons’ coaching staff.

Smith had the fifth-fastest 40-yard dash time (4.68 seconds) and the eight-best broad jump of 10 feet, 1 inch of the defensive linemen at the NFL scouting combine. He also had a vertical jump of 35 inches and lifted 225 pounds, 23 times.

Smith had 15 sacks for 115 yards in losses, 19 tackles for loss for minus 124 yards, forced four fumbles and recovered two fumbles last season when he was named the American Athletic Conference’s defensive player of the year.

In another ancillary draft matter, Louisville quarterback Teddy Bridgewater is set to meet with the Texans, who have the No. 1 overall pick. If he can impress the Texans and earn the No. 1 overall pick, that would push another good position player down to the Falcons, who hold the sixth overall pick.

32 comments
Dman
Dman

First round best Defensive guy left between Clowney, Mack and Barr. Second round, best Safety left. Hopefully Ha ha Clinton-Dix will be passed over. He is a good center fielder.

Quackmeyer
Quackmeyer

Joe Tess....doesn't look like you have fooled anybody.  lol  Still a big liar and scum who makes fun of dead children killed in pool accidents!  No changing those stripes, pal.

GA_Murf_
GA_Murf_

Not much of an athlete on field athlete, got a chance to see him play mainly because I wanted to see Bridgewater. Marcus has great football insticts, he can produce pile ups in the run and he is a good pass rusher but he needs to add variety to his to pass rush technique. Too often he gets caught up in hand fighting at the line of scrimmage. 


Another player I really like is Terraence Brooks (Florida State Safety).... The guy can play everywhere on the field, very versatile!  

DawgGoneIt
DawgGoneIt

Sometimes these kind of players are the ones that turn out to be great in the pros. Overlooked, unheralded, and they burst onto the scene in the NFL. Sort of how Richard Sherman, Greg Hardy, etc did. Late round draft picks that blossom. All about upside. He doesn't have the name of Clowney, Mack, or Barr, but if he can put his hand in the dirty and get after it, and be physical, I would love to have him!

JoeBellon
JoeBellon

Soooooo... is it too much to ask for a little informed analysis from our beat writer as to what this means for the Falcons' upcoming draft? Anyone? Anyone?

slydawg
slydawg

How does Kroy Bierman stay on this roster? How does he stay with a salary of $3 mil?

gfw
gfw

Morris has to be totally a 3-4 guy for the Falcons.  This should answer the question whether that's where we're headed.  I'm not convinced we can get consistent pressure without larger DE's---the kind with great rushing skills, but who am I to question Dimitroff and Smith?  (That question is not a sincere one.)

slydawg
slydawg

Prediction, just a small prediction: I guarantee the Falcons draft this dude in the 4th round.

SeenThatB4
SeenThatB4

The falcan'ts couldn't rush the QB last year, or the year before,and they won't be able to do it next year either.  

GEAUX SAINTS!!!

Intruder
Intruder

They are going to rush the passer with Mack, in the manner of Lawrence Taylor.

DaltonbywayofBickley
DaltonbywayofBickley

Don't feed the troll and it goes away. Your attention is its only reason for being.

OriginalATLien
OriginalATLien

Give it a rest Joe, Falcons are not violating any rules numbnuts!

Barves_Loss_Agian
Barves_Loss_Agian

Tipical of teh  Flacons 2 skrit the rules and brig sum 1 in B4 the drat. Beter hope they dont get caut

TommyLeeMaddox
TommyLeeMaddox

What's the chance that some of the other defensive ends you've mentioned being let go prior to [or after] the draft?

JSSN
JSSN

@JoeBellon

Nothing because it is just for general info like when C Viv tell us when the Hawks bring in guys to workout before the NBA draft, due diligence. If he gets drafted by them, it won't be out of the blue! #negativevibes

Dman
Dman

FalCan's in 2014

Go (spelled correctly) Falcons...

The Truth ATL
The Truth ATL

@SeenThatB4      YES WE CAN....SOUNDS LIKE THAT FALCON FAN AGAIN.

The Taints

    New nickname courtesy of BountyGate.

usbummer
usbummer

@DaltonbywayofBickley  This troll doesn't go away. It takes every opportunity it can to insult the Falcons whether it is fed or nor not. Having said that, it is best not to feed the jerk.

Esquire
Esquire

@DaltonbywayofBickley  ......................there will always be somebody who will respond to the trolls.  Really ticked Seen off when I went to NOLA years ago and stole his identity, just wanted to dish out a little of his own crap.   But he also uses aliases to respond to himself if nobody else does.  The reason he puts so much effort into bashing the Falcons is because he is afraid.


WE ARE THE MIGHTY MIGHTY FALCONS!

JoeBellon
JoeBellon

@JSSN Well, it doesn't mean NOTHING, but I'll grant you it's far from determinative regarding our draft intentions. I'm just increasingly frustrated by the total lack of useful analysis and information about the Falcons off-season from the AJC. We had a really interesting first day of free agency. It then became immediately obvious that nothing else was likely to happen until the draft. Fair enough. Now I want something -- anything -- from the only paper in town to clue me in about what's going to happen on draft day. I don't demand certainty, but I'd sure like some data collection and analysis.

slydawg
slydawg

@JSSN @slydawg How many safeties are on the roster? Get my point? Let's dump the trash now...H

JoeBellon
JoeBellon

@JSSN You're quite right about two things, at the very least: the Falcons don't talk much (and when they do, they don't say much) and draft boards are fluid. In fact, if your draft board isn't incredibly fluid and complex at the #6 position then you're not doing your job well. None of that changes the fact that the local paper does an incredibly poor job of providing useful analysis and info about the Falcons. In fact, the team's unwillingness to talk to the media makes it more urgent that the AJC act as an aggregator of Falcons content, not less. I don't need the paper or its writers to tell me who we're going to draft, I need them to tell me what the evidence is for what we're thinking and why. If there's no evidence and the Falcons are being crazily tight-lipped about the draft, I need the paper to tell me that too. As it stands, I get nothing but "hey this player came for a workout, have you noticed we've got no pass rush to speak of, but good looking out for all those folks we're getting back next year, go Falcons!"

PS - I do hang out at the Falcoholic, and while I appreciate it for what it is, I wish it did a better job of the kind of work I'm talking about.

JSSN
JSSN

@JoeBellon  

A draft board is fluid, if you think that by now you don't get what the Falcons are trying to get in the remaining D-lines spots (a tremendous edge pass rusher) and young space eater defensive tackle who can be a cheap alternative in the rotation! 

If Demling hadn't tweeted out the info on Smith, you think the Falcons would been forthcoming on his visit?

JSSN
JSSN

@JoeBellon  

You guys need to hang out on the spots like 'Falconholics.' I don't care if it is Vaughn (ESPN) or Ledbetter, the Falcons are the least receptive to media interaction from their key members of football operations. If not for their participation in the League mandated media sessions at the Senior Bowl where they were the primary information conduits (coaching staff). The Falcons do very little media. They use their propaganda wing (Jay Adams) to put out their version of things, simple as that. 

I want you folks to be objective for a minute, after Super Bowl week and the events I aforementioned; how much have you seen Dimitroff or any of the others (the brain trust)  in the media? Unless you are diligent and know the media outlets that he'll venture on (many in New England); information is not forthcoming!

Ledbetter and I have our disagreements on many things. But on this point, your criticism is factually misdirected. This is no more evident each year than when the 'State of the Falcons' news conferences are held. It is the only they generally break corporate line because Blank is there. And if he is a bad mood, he'll force them to talk on subjects. This year was interesting because Blank was out of town when they (Dimitroff and Smith) met with the media, go and watch it. Then watch the Blank presser the next week. You decide.

In closing, take a journey over to the Baltimore Sun and you'll see the huge difference between an open franchise and closed shop. Just see the number of times Jim Harbaugh, Ozzie Newsome makes himself available and even the owner (who is hands off Steve Bisciotti)  to the local media. Sorry, I could point out many more franchises like Seattle, even the semi-dysfunctional relationship (GM/Coach) in San Francisco is more open than the Falcons! I'll leave it at that

jeeperscrow
jeeperscrow

@JoeBellon Ledbetter is a joke. The AJC needs to hire someone like Dave O'Brien to cover the Falcons. Never get anything of value from Ledbetter. The AJC is way too big of a paper to put up with his lack of effort as a beat writer.

JSSN
JSSN

@slydawg

You said that last year, where did that get you? Oh yeah, with a crybaby like DMan, nevermind!

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