The NFL combine is nearing its end in Indianapolis and the Atlanta Falcons are looking to evaluate draft eligible players to fill their needs for the upcoming season. The Atlanta Falcons are looking at a couple of different positions to improve depth and find athletes who can contribute from day one. On both sides of the ball, the Falcons have various needs on which to fill. We are going to look at five under-the-radar prospects at the combine that the Falcons should give a strong look at when the draft rolls around in late April.
Kris Frost, Linebacker, Auburn
Coming off his senior season at Auburn, Frost recorded 96 total tackles, his career high. A highly recruited player coming out of high school, Frost will be available lower in the draft where the Falcons will be able to pick him up. Linebacker is at the front of the list of needs for the Falcons and Frost would fit the bill of an SEC linebacker who can cover and stop the run. Watching his highlight tape, Frost was moved all over the field. He has the ability to play inside and on the outside where he has deceptive speed and can help rush the passer. In each of his four years, Frost has increased his tackling total by at least ten each year. the 6’2 frost would be a great pickup for the Falcons, especially if he does well in this week’s combine.
Carl Nassib, Defensive End, Penn State
At 6’7 and 272 pounds Nassib presents a mismatch in the trenches for an offensive lineman. Coming off his senior season at Penn State, Nassib recorded over 15 sacks. The Falcons would fill the need of a pass rusher by selecting him and adding him to the opposite side of last year’s first round pick Vic Beasley, would be a deadly combination. A good week at the combine would see his stock rise and maybe into the late first, early second round. The Falcons would need to keep an eye on him if that happens.
John Theus, Offensive Tackle, Georgia
A four year starter at Georgia, Theus can help the Atlanta Falcons at right tackle or back up Jake Matthews at left tackle. With Ryan Schraeder at the top of the depth chart for right tackle, Theus might be able to give him a fight for the position in 2016. Theus has been one of the more dependable offensive lineman at Georgia. This past year he has played a little bit of everything from guard to tackle. The Falcons might try to work him at guard if they feel he can become a starter. A former five star recruit out of high school, Theus has the talent to make an impact somewhere for the Falcons in 2016.
T.J. Green, Defensive Back, Clemson
If you watched college football at all this year, you know Clemson had a pretty good year. Green was a big part of that. At 6’3 205, Green has the size of a safety that Dan Quinn likes and with the Falcons parting ways with William Moore, they will need to fill the safety position in the draft. Green is a safety that can do a little of everything. He can cover the pass and help over the top, he can also come down into the box and help stop the run like an additional linebacker. In the National Championship Game, Green totaled 11 tackles. This pickup by the Falcons would help their secondary and it would help Dan Quinn create another “Legion of Boom” like he had in Seattle.
Tyler Boyd, Wide Receiver, Pittsburgh
You may be saying to yourself, the Falcons already have Julio Jones, they don’t need another receiver. In the NFL, now it is not enough to only have one star receiver. With Roddy White becoming older, Boyd would be another great addition to the receiving core and he would blossom with Julio on the other side. At 6’2 Boyd woud present another big target for Matt Ryan to throw to. Over his 3 seasons at Pitt, Boyd went over 3,000 yards receiving. He caught 21 touchdowns and hauled in 254 catches. Boyd would be a great pickup for the Falcons.
All of these prospects would help the Atlanta Falcons improve upon an 8-8 campaign in 2015. These prospects may not be at the top of the draft boards, but so many stars in the NFL are not. These players will make a difference in different ways, but they would look great doing it in the Georgia Dome.