Can The Falcons Skill Guys Make Up For Their Lack of Depth?

Photo by Hunter Laserna | The Signal

According to a poll, 31 fan bases believe this particular NFL team is NOT anywhere near contention. Despite the overwhelming majority, there’s one fanbase that would beg to differ. This fanbase believes in their team year in and year out. They stand by their side without any fear of the repercussions. Yet the team always finds a way to push the fans closer and closer to a realm of hopelessness. Being a fan of this team is no easy task, yet there’s still light at the end of the tunnel, and here’s why. 

Yes, you guessed it. The team in question is the Atlanta Falcons. The Falcons lack depth at almost every position, but sometimes all you need is a lot of skill and a wee bit of luck. The team doesn’t just have any prototypical skill guys. They have the real deal. Skills as in A.J. Terrell, Kyle Pitts,  Cordarrelle Patterson, Drake London and former Heisman-winner Marcus Mariota. All of these guys have shown they possess the special abilities to make plays at the highest level and this year shouldn’t be any different. 

Let’s begin on the defensive side of the ball. There’s no Falcons defense without naming arguably the best cornerback in the league, A.J. Terrell. The Falcons took a lot of heat after drafting him over other big name guys like Justin Jefferson. Last season, Terrell made a name for himself after allowing only 29 catches for 200 yards. Terrell is a top cornerback in the league and last year he upped the stakes. In addition to his superb stats, he gave opposing quarterbacks plenty of problems as he forced a league-low 47.5 passer rating into his coverage. 

On the other side of the ball, Pitts, similar to Terrell, has the capabilities to be the next face of the franchise. Pitts had one of the best tight end rookie seasons to date. Pitts followed in the Atlanta legend Julio Jones’s footsteps as he passed Jones to become the only rookie in Falcons’ history to amass over 1,000 receiving yards. Pitts was also 51 yards away from passing Mike Ditka’s rookie year receiving yards. Pitts is set to push the Atlanta offense to another level. 

It’s impossible to mention the Falcons without mentioning Cordarrelle Patterson. He’s bounced around the league, but it seems he found his perfect match here in Atlanta. Last year, Patterson kept the Falcons” afloat as he was used at a variety of positions on the field. When lined up at running back, he averaged 4.0 yards per rush and put up 618 yards on 153 attempts. He went on to cross the 1000 all-purpose yard mark for the first time in his career. If he can remain as electric as he was last year, this offense could be a real issue for opposing defensive coordinators. 

Offseason acquisitions Marcus Mariota and Drake London are new to the scene, but the film speaks for itself on both guys. We saw Mariotta and London ball out of control throughout their college years. Mariota had a shaky NFL career thus far, but based on interviews and body language, he seems to be extremely ready for another shot at playing quarterback in the NFL. London is entering his rookie season in the NFL, but the ceiling is high nonetheless. He proved himself at The University of Southern California and Atlanta fans hope that success can translate to the league. 

Yes, the Falcons lack many things on each side of the ball. It’ll be a grind all year for the fans, staff and players. Atlanta fans, buckle in and get your popcorn ready because the Falcons may emerge as a threat in the NFC.