2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Team Grade:
Atlanta Falcons
Quarterbacks: Running Backs:
Wide Receivers: Tight Ends:
Defense: Kickers:

Outlook

The Falcons had a season to forget last year but were slowed by injuries, including several to key players. Atlanta couldn't overcome those injuries and really struggled. But the team is healthier this year and has enough talent to get back to their winning ways. The offense can be top notch and while the defense still has some holes, the secondary and pass rush has some potential. Expect a much better season from this team. They can contend for a playoff spot but probably aren't a Super Bowl caliber team just yet. The defense still needs some work and the loss of linebacker Sean Weatherspoon to injury really hurts the chances of this team.
FANTASY BREAKOUT
We don't think he'll have a monster second season but tight end Levine Toilolo will get his shot to shine for the Falcons. He will be given first shot to start and fill the pass catching tight end role left by Tony Gonzalez. He has huge shoes to fill but Toilolo has the talent to be a solid option in the passing game for the Falcons. He should get his targets and help fantasy teams on a spot start basis. Matt Ryan is used to looking for the tight end, so we don't expect that to change just because Gonzalez retired.
FANTASY DUD
Running back Steven Jackson was a dud his first season with the Falcons and things aren't likely to get better for him. He is another year older and just doesn't look near as fresh as past seasons. He also has rookie Devonta Freeman to hold off for carries, which is another strike against him. The Falcons could look at the younger option if the team or Jackson has any struggles. It only makes sense. Don't expect a much different season from last year for Jackson in 2014.

Team Notes

Jan 20, 11:23 PM Former Atlanta Falcons head coach Mike Smith is expected to interview with the Oakland Raiders for their defensive coordinator opening, a source said Tuesday, Jan. 20.
Jan 19, 09:13 PM Atlanta Falcons QB Matt Ryan has been named to the 2015 Pro Bowl as a replacement for New England Patriots QB Tom Brady.
Jan 16, 03:12 PM Free-agent coach Mike Smith (Falcons) is getting interest from the Oakland Raiders for their open defensive coordinator position. It is unlikely that Smith will end up in Oakland.
Jan 10, 10:32 AM Atlanta Falcons OT Jake Matthews (foot) is dealing with a Lisfranc injury he suffered during the team's Week 17 game, according to sources.
Jan 04, 08:12 AM Atlanta Falcons OT Reid Fragel signed a Reserve/Futures contract with the club on Saturday, Jan. 3.
Dec 31, 07:03 PM The Atlanta Falcons signed free-agent TE Mickey Shuler (Jaguars) to a futures contract Wednesday, Dec. 31. Terms of the contracts were not disclosed.
Dec 29, 06:43 PM The Atlanta Falcons re-signed FS Brandan Bishop, DT Ricky Havili-Heimuli, CB Jordan Mabin, WR Freddie Martino, TE Kyle Miller, WR Bernard Reedy, OG Adam Replogle, LB Jacques Smith and RB Ronnie Wingo to futures contracts Monday, Dec. 29. Terms of the contracts were not disclosed.
Dec 29, 09:32 AM Atlanta Falcons head coach Mike Smith was fired Monday, Dec. 29.
Dec 28, 03:42 PM Atlanta Falcons WR Julio Jones (hip) is active and starting in Week 17 versus the Carolina Panthers. Jones was listed as questionable entering the game.
Dec 28, 03:42 PM Atlanta Falcons RB Steven Jackson (quadriceps) is inactive for Week 17 versus the Carolina Panthers.
Dec 28, 09:32 AM Atlanta Falcons WR Julio Jones (hip) is likely to play Sunday, Dec. 28.
Dec 28, 09:32 AM Atlanta Falcons RB Devonta Freeman is likely to see a decent workload Sunday, Dec. 28, with RB Steven Jackson (quadriceps) likely out for Week 17.
Dec 28, 09:32 AM Atlanta Falcons RB Steven Jackson (quadriceps) is unlikely to play Sunday, Dec. 28.
Dec 28, 09:32 AM Atlanta Falcons RB Devonta Freeman is likely to see a decent workload Sunday, Dec. 28, with RB Steven Jackson (quadriceps) likely out for Week 17.
Dec 26, 05:12 PM Atlanta Falcons RBs Devonta Freeman and Jacquizz Rodgers are expected to see more repetitions in Week 17 against the Carolina Panthers with RB Steven Jackson (quadriceps) unlikely to play. However, head coach Mike Smith hasn't officially ruled Jackson out yet. The team is anxious, though, to see how Freeman will perform with more touches. RB Jerome Smith, who was promoted from the practice squad this week, will be active against the Panthers.
Dec 26, 05:12 PM Atlanta Falcons RBs Devonta Freeman and Jacquizz Rodgers are expected to see more repetitions in Week 17 against the Carolina Panthers with RB Steven Jackson (quadriceps) unlikely to play. However, head coach Mike Smith hasn't officially ruled Jackson out yet. The team is anxious, though, to see how Freeman will perform with more touches. RB Jerome Smith, who was promoted from the practice squad this week, will be active against the Panthers.

Offseason Keys

Additions:
Tyson Jackson, DT; Paul Soliai, DT; Jon Asamoah, G; Devin Hester, WR. 

Losses:
Thomas DeCoud, S. 

2014 Draft Class

RoundPickPlayerPos
 # 1  6 Jake MatthewsOL
 # 2  5 Ra'Shede HagemanDL
 # 3  4 Dezmen SouthwardDB
 # 4  3 Devonta FreemanRB
 # 4  39 Prince ShemboLB
 # 5  7 Ricardo AllenDB
 # 5  28 Marquis SpruillLB
 # 7  40 Tyler StarrLB
 Undrafted Geraldo BoldewijnWR

2014 Schedule

WeekDateTimeOpponent
1     Sep 7 1:00PM     New Orleans
2     Sep 14 1:00PM     at Cincinnati
3     Sep 18 8:25PM     Tampa Bay
4     Sep 28 4:25PM     at Minnesota
5     Oct 5 1:00PM     at New York Giants
6     Oct 12 4:25PM     Chicago
7     Oct 19 1:00PM     at Baltimore
8     Oct 26 9:30AM     Detroit
-- Week 9 Bye --
10     Nov 9 1:00PM     at Tampa Bay
11     Nov 16 1:00PM     at Carolina
12     Nov 23 1:00PM     Cleveland
13     Nov 30 4:05PM     Arizona
14     Dec 8 8:30PM     at Green Bay
15     Dec 14 1:00PM     Pittsburgh
16     Dec 21 1:00PM     at New Orleans
17     Dec 28 4:25PM     Carolina
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