Falcons Shift Focus to Enhancing Pass Rush and Cornerback Depth

Falcons Eye Defensive Reinforcement in Upcoming Draft Picks

by Nouman Rasool
Falcons Shift Focus to Enhancing Pass Rush and Cornerback Depth
© Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

In the wake of securing quarterback Kirk Cousins and bolstering their offensive lineup with talented receivers, the Atlanta Falcons are now honing in on fortifying their defense, specifically aiming to enhance their pass rush and cornerback positions.

Despite the flurry of activities during the initial phase of free agency in March, the team has yet to address these critical defensive areas, leaving room for strategic additions through the draft and subsequent free agency phases.

The Falcons' defensive line, spearheaded by Grady Jarrett and David Onyemata, faces uncertainties due to both players' injury setbacks last season and advancing age. Jarrett is currently recovering from an ACL injury sustained in October, while Onyemata grappled with an ankle issue, hampering his performance.

The edge rusher position, crucial for a potent pass rush, also sees vacancies with Calais Campbell and Bud Dupree, both leading in sacks last season, now free agents. Arnold Ebiketie emerges as a beacon of hope, yet the Falcons are keenly eyeing draft prospects to bolster this position.

Revamping Falcons' Defense

Under the guidance of new coach Raheem Morris, the Falcons are exploring options to rejuvenate their pass rush, which has lagged in efficiency over recent years. The possibility of drafting an edge rusher with their No.

8 pick underscores the team's commitment to revitalizing their defensive prowess. Potential draft picks include promising talents like Dallas Turner, Jared Verse, and Laiatu Latu, with Latu's prior connection to Falcons' defensive coordinator Jimmy Lake at Washington presenting an intriguing prospect.

While addressing the pass rush remains a priority, the cornerback position also demands attention. A.J. Terrell, a pivotal figure in the Falcons' defensive lineup, has yet to secure an extension, raising questions about the team's long-term plans for the position.

The Falcons are contemplating additions to complement Terrell and bolster their secondary, with potential free-agent signings and draft picks under consideration. The Falcons' strategy reflects a holistic approach to rebuilding their defense, recognizing the need to complement their offensive acquisitions with a robust defensive lineup.

As the team navigates through free agency and the draft, the focus on enhancing the pass rush and cornerback positions underscores their commitment to assembling a competitive and balanced team capable of contending in the upcoming season.