SAD NEWS: The Atlanta Falcons Sad, Head-Scratching 2024 NFL Draft has…

Grading The Atlanta Falcons Sad, Head-Scratching 2024 NFL Draft

The Atlanta Falcons entered the 2024 NFL Draft with pick number eight and left the first round on Thursday night. They were discussed among NFL fans, media, and players as the worst draft pick of the night. It wasn’t because of who they took but because of the player’s position. 

Atlanta Falcons Draft Picks

    • 1 (8): QB Michael Penix Jr., Washington
    • 2 (35): DL Ruke Orhorhoro, Clemson
    • 3 (74): EDGE Bralen Trice, Washington
    • 4 (109): DL Brandon Dorlus, Oregon
    • 5 (143): LB JD Bertrand, Notre Dame
    • 6 (186): RB Jase McClellan, Alabama
    • 6 (187): WR Casey Washington, Illinois
    • 6 (197): DI Zion Logue, Georgia

Michael Penix Jr.

The Atlanta Falcons shocked the entire NFL world when they took Washington’s quarterback, Michael Penix Jr., with the eighth overall pick. If you had told me three months ago the Falcons would’ve taken Penix, it would’ve been a home run. Still, back in March, Atlanta fixed their quarterback issues in free agency, signing Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins, who is coming off an Achilles injury and will be 36 years old this season but is one of the better quarterbacks in the NFL and was given a four-year 180 million dollar contract.

If everything goes well, Cousins should be the starter for several seasons, but the Falcons still took Penix, which was a very head-scratching move. 

Under Cousins, the Falcons can now challenge for an NFC South title. The division isn’t great so it could be done. They should’ve taken a player at eight who could’ve helped them win now. The Falcons were one of the worst teams last season, getting pressure on the quarterback from the defensive line position, and they could’ve had any pass rusher they wanted since no defensive player was taken at the time.

Instead, they take a quarterback who won’t help you this season unless something goes wrong for the team.  Penix will also be 24 years old next month; he is already NFL-ready; he doesn’t need to sit a few seasons to figure out the game, and quarterbacks his age are already getting second contracts in the league. 

The pick made zero sense for the Atlanta Falcons, and Penix also has to be mad because he could’ve gone to a place where he could’ve started games this season, but instead, he might not become a legit starter until he’s 26 or 27. 

Day Two Picks

After the Falcons’ disastrous pick in round one, they returned on Day two. They helped the defensive line, taking Clemson’s defensive tackle, Ruke Orhorhoro, and Washington’s defensive end, Bralen Trice. Orhorhoro ranked first in Athleticism Score at the combine among all defensive tackles in the draft class, and that shows just how athletic traits and upside he has. Orhorhoro has all the traits to be an excellent pass rusher from the interior defensive line. 

Trice was one of the main reasons Washington went to the title game last season in college football, starting in all 15 games, recording seven sacks and 11.5 tackles for losses. Trice can get to the quarterback and has earned two seasons in a row of 90.0 plus pass-rushing grades from Pro Football Focus. 

The Phoenix, Arizona native landed in a perfect spot where he can develop and still see the field early since the Falcons need much pass-rushing help. 

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