Posted: 10:00 am Monday, May 19th, 2014

5 Ex-Falcons on the All-Unemployed team 

By D. Orlando Ledbetter

FILE PHOTO -- 110801 Flowery Branch - Offensive tackle Tyson Clabo, left, and offensive guard Justin Blalock, right, who just signed a contract with the Falcons, watch practice but are not yet able to participate while players run through the first padded practice at training camp in Flowery Branch on Monday, August 1, 2011.    Curtis Compton ccompton@ajc.com

FILE PHOTO — 110801 Flowery Branch – Offensive tackle Tyson Clabo, left, and offensive guard Justin Blalock, right, who just signed a contract with the Falcons, watch practice but are not yet able to participate while players run through the first padded practice at training camp in Flowery Branch on Monday, August 1, 2011. Curtis Compton ccompton@ajc.com

FLOWERY BRANCH – Five former Falcons – tight end Ben Hartsock, tackle Tyson Clabo, linebacker Stephen Nicholas, and cornerbacks Asante Samuel and Dunta Robinson – are on the ProfootballTalk.com’s All-Unemployed team over available veteran player.

Here’s a the entire team.

Hartsock started 11 games for the Falcons in 2008. He’s started 48 games over 10 seasons as a blocking tight end from The Ohio State University.

Clabo has 116 starts and could be picked up by a team in need of help late in training camp like the Falcons, who suffered a rash of injuries and signed Jeremy Trueblood last season.

Nicholas made 50 starts for the Falcons.

Samuel has 51 career interceptions, but appeared to have lost some of his acceleration last season.

Robinson lost his nickel back job in Kansas City last season, his 10th in the league.

DRAFT CLASS STORIES

Jake Matthews brings strength of family to the Falcons

Ra’Shede Hageman could turn into defensive force for Falcons

Dezmen Southward ready to compete for playing time

Warrick Dunn likes the pick of FSU’s Devonta Freeman

Falcons signed 20 undrafted rookie free agents, 5 from SEC 

Falcons invite 24 players in for tryouts

NFL Draft 2014: ESPN’s Todd McShay on the Falcons’ draft class

VIDEO: Reaction to the Atlanta Falcons’ 2014 draft class

THE ATLANTA FALCONS 2014 DRAFT CLASS

Round 1 / 6 — Jake Matthews, RT, 6-5, 308, Texas A&M

Round 2/37 – Ra’Shede Hageman, DE, 6-6, Minnesota

Round 3/68 – Dezmen Southward, FS, 6-0, 211, Wisconsin

Round 4/103 – Devonta Freeman, RB, 5-8, 206, Florida State

Round 4/139 – Prince Shembo, LB, 6-1, 253 Notre Dame

Round 5/147 – Ricardo Allen, CB, 5-9, 187, Purdue

Round 5/168 – Marquis Spruill, LB, 6-1, 231, Syracuse

Round 7/253 – Yawin Smallwood, LB, 6-2, 246, Connecticut

Round 7/255 – Tyler Starr, LB, 6-4, 250, South Dakota

49 comments
Quackmeyer
Quackmeyer

JSSN.....Don't believe you can count Ewing as out of work since he never went to work in the NFL.

HarveyPooka
HarveyPooka

Clabo may be only one of the five that has decent chance of picking up a job with some team.

DarlaLewis
DarlaLewis

Their unemployed for a reason, Falcons need not look back but forward.....

JSSN
JSSN

What Ledbetter, no carryover for (Ray) Edwards and (Bradie) Ewing?

Actually, what is your view on why Kyle Cook and Jonathan Goodwin haven't gotten more opportunities yet?

BigCrimson75
BigCrimson75

Scary to think, all 5 of these dead-beats in addition to DeCoud, Baker & #71 were all starters on a Team that reached the NFC Championship Game. :(

.......and there are those that still question Ice!

BrownianMotion
BrownianMotion

don't pick up these castoffs---theyre not that good---thats why they were cut

falconfever
falconfever

Surprised DeCouldn't was not on the list/ Glad he is gone

bffriel1
bffriel1

The Falcons offensive line lost a lot of punch when they lost Tyson Clabo. Get him back...

Leviathan
Leviathan

We dont need not 1 of these guys to come back here. They are all unemployed for a reason. If they except vet minimum they may get 1 yr deals somewhere as depth.

PaulinNH
PaulinNH

Greg Little is available and hasn't been picked up by the Panthers yet???

Barves_Loss_Agian
Barves_Loss_Agian

No srupise abut Donte Roberson. Anoter Dummytroff misteak. He was alwyas 10 yards a way form the paly and when he wuld make a paly he wuld get a penilty. 

ChopChamps95
ChopChamps95

I can't believe Michael Turner wasn't on their list.  But I guess they figured at 32, Turner's days of being even a backup are pretty much over.

RiseUp
RiseUp

technically its 5, Ben Hartsock played for us for one year

JSSN
JSSN

@Quackmeyer  

And you people call me cruel. He worked, he just was the 2nd most injury prone player in the history of all Atlanta sports! Mike Hampton, Bradie Ewing, and Brian Asselstine, that's a sick list! Honorable mention to Speedy Claxton.

DOrlandoLedbetter
DOrlandoLedbetter moderator

Some mighty fine coaching helped to carry them to the NFC title game.

DarlaLewis
DarlaLewis

@bffriel1 Least we forget that Claybo lost his starting job playing for Miami last season. Plus their quarterback got sacked as many times as Matt Ryan. Be careful what you ask for without your facts....

DOrlandoLedbetter
DOrlandoLedbetter moderator

There aren't very many interesting players on the list.

BigCrimson75
BigCrimson75

@PaulinNH Greg Little has a small problem considering he's a NFL WR.........Bad Hands!!

BigHittas
BigHittas

maybe they could trade for Fottball and bring him in as a CB?

DOrlandoLedbetter
DOrlandoLedbetter moderator

Clabo had a good career for an undrafted kid from Wake Forest. He might get signed somewhere if the injury bug hits his position.

Dirtyb8
Dirtyb8

@BigCrimson75 Exactly. One OT doesn't make the whole offensive line function better magically. Clabo had a lot of help when he was a Falcon.

Ultraman8
Ultraman8

@DOrlandoLedbetter With the addition of Matthews, does that relegate Ox Baker to back up or practice team or possibly cut?  I believe he had one or two good years, and has been injured at times the rest of his career.

JSSN
JSSN

@BigCrimson75 @PaulinNH  

This blog makes me smile! How long before another ZuZu wannabe comes on and says we should bring back Clabo? 2010 Packers did y'all a huge favor!!!

AnsweredTHIS
AnsweredTHIS

@DOrlandoLedbetter @RiseUp  


And perhaps do you see Clabo coming back in the fold?  One more question, why did we not pick up Hartsock instead of the Bear?  Seems to me if  we wanted to run the ball more efficiently, then Hartsock would have been the man to scoop up?  Thoughts?

JSSN
JSSN

@baseball sucks 

Observation.

From Day 1, he overran plays. No blockers to create vision or reasons for a defensive player to so onerous in simply breaking down what was in front of him. My goodness, Thomas and Van Gorder tried a little bit of everything, playing him 20 years deep and strictly between the numbers. Nothing worked. When they cashiered Thomas and brought in Lewis, they slipped him in the 10-15 yard zone to cut angle recognition down for him. It worked for a bit until teams noticed that Falcons corners and William Moore could not play man coverage. They were still getting occasional edge rush from Abraham at that time. But anytime they saw an offense capable of running crossing patterns or had a real TE or seam beating deep threat (hello Lance Moore), they were done for! Nolan brought him all the up in 2012 and it was a good mask when people did not have personnel grouping footage on the Falcons. After Game 8 of 2012, teams discovered that the Falcons could not stop the run. They stopped messing around trying to read the sets and just pounded the rock and let TEs loose on the safeties and overmatched LBs. The rest is history. 

Thomas DeCoud was a liability.

ProFootballFocus and Football Outsiders numbers backed up the observation. 

I've said it before, he lacked natural safety instincts (Ledbetter and I used to go at it about it). Your free safety can get away with that when get pressure (as you pointed out), but that is no excuse for not being able to see plays in front of you! Again, I give you Thomas DeCoud greatest moment in ineptitude: The 72 yard Hakeem Nicks TD in the NFC Wild Card game!

I won't include his shallow cross chasing (much of which was hung on Stephen Nicholas). Man, I'm tired! Tired of having to explain what was obvious to the rest of the world!


notPlanB
notPlanB

Agreeing with JSSN.   Moore & DeCoud were alternates and yes, he made it on the number in INT's. Most were tipped balls.

baseball sucks
baseball sucks

@JSSN  You sound like  one of those  people  who seems to make up  stats   to  support  some  narrative  you believe.  How did you come up with that  ranking bout Decoud   and  non  natural  instinctive safety  number thing, sounds like  right out of  Nerd World  Fantasy Football  stuff. Again  your D-Backs core always look good when your seven up front  plays well , Never when your Dl  can't pressure the passer and your linebackers   can't stop the runs up the middle, and can't   stop the Tight ends and I mean any TE from having pro bowl  numbers

JSSN
JSSN

@baseball sucks

Nothing "ignorant" to the point, Thomas DeCoud was the 2nd most non naturally instinctive player at the safety position in the NFL (behind banished Patrick Nakamura). It was not from "cheating up" or bad front seven play. My goodness, he was beaten deep, he overran plays from deep safety coverage (see Hakeem Nicks 71 yard TD in the 2011 Wild card). He was mind boggling. He was a Pro Bowl alternate on the majority of picks being tipped INTs alone (go back and look at his 2012 picks). People make mistakes, but Thomas DeCoud was a hot mess!

baseball sucks
baseball sucks

@falconfever @LeftisnotRight Just  foolishness  or ignorance that 's  behind soooo many of these  Decoud  comments by posters here,wasn't Decoud a pro bowl selected  just two years remove from last  year.  Your  defensive backs  are only as good as  the SEVEN  in front of them  . Decoud played many time out of position    trying to cheat  up closer   to  help  a miserable front DL and  a equally  bad line backers  core  ,do these posters here know what a SAFTEY   position  job is. Decoud will be just fine if he gets to Carolina a team with  good DL and LBs , if you don't think  that SEVEN  in front of    your dbs  ask Darrel Regis  how big his island got once he went from the jets to Tampa last season

JSSN
JSSN

@Dirtyb8

He's sniping. he's playing a game, unfortunately (for him) I'm not playing along.

Dirtyb8
Dirtyb8

@JSSN Once again you scared him away. Jeez dude.

JSSN
JSSN

@zuzu331

Try getting off the Internet. 

Oh, what you are talking about is called "Pandering." Care to keep being annoying (to others, not me)? We can get the GBI involved with your silliness. No self-control, not surprised in the least...JA.