5 things we learned about the Falcons this week

 

Atlanta Falcons' Roddy White (84) runs after catching a pass as Carolina Panthers' Luke Kuechly (59) pursues in the first half of an NFL football game in Charlotte, N.C., Sunday, Nov. 16, 2014. Photo: Bob Leverone, AP

Atlanta Falcons’ Roddy White (84) runs after catching a pass as Carolina Panthers’ Luke Kuechly (59) pursues in the first half of an NFL football game in Charlotte, N.C., Sunday, Nov. 16, 2014. Photo: Bob Leverone, AP

FLOWERY BRANCH – It’s been an historic week in franchise history with the release of the team’s all-time leading wide receiver.

Here are the five things we learned this week:

1. WHITE RELEASED: The Falcons, after returning from the combine, released White on Wednesday via text. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution columnist Jeff Schultz found that to be rather bizarre. With the release the Falcons are projected to be $33 million under the cap.   The Atlanta Journal-Constitution columnist Mark Bradley felt cutting Roddy White was the right move.

2. COMPETITION FOR BRUCE IRVIN: Jacksonville, which must improve its defense, will be the chief competitor for Seattle linebacker Bruce Irvin in free agency. The Jaguars will enter free agency nearly $90 million under the cap and can double the Falcons’ offer if they so desire. To complicate matters, Falcons scout DeJuan Polk, who was being demoted to a college position, left to become Jacksonville’s assistant director of pro personnel.

3. SUPER BOWL BID GETS COMPETITION: The Falcons got hit on all fronts this week as Los Angeles jumped into the bidding for the 2020 Super Bowl. The Falcons are angling for 2019, but 2020 is the fall back move.

4. WHITE’S REPLACEMENT: White’s replacement is not on the roster. The Falcons will need to replace him in free agency, because a rookie can’t step in and be the No. 2. Some of the top candidates including Miami’s Rishard Matthews, Cleveland’s Travis Benjamin (although he’s more of a Devin Hester replacement), New York’s Rueben Randle, Cincinnati’s Mohamed Sanu or Marvin Jones. Also, add Seattle’s Jermaine Kearse to the group.

5. OFFSEASON PLAN COMES INTO FOCUS: With the release of White, the Falcons are set to address their offensive needs — wide receiver and offensive center/guard — in free agency. They’ll get defensive help in the both the draft and free agency. Coach Dan Quinn said the team wants to get faster and speedy Ohio State linebacker Darron Lee is now the popular mock draft pick for the first round.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s D. Orlando Ledbetter joins CineSport’s Noah Coslov to identify the players that the Falcons may be able to land with the 17th pick in the Draft & discuss impressive players on offense.

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