A later date, another camp battle! This one problems two young linebackers, one the particular fanbase loves and one that the court is out on.
Fight it out Riley, 24 entering his third season with Atlanta
Riley has turned into a bit of a punching bag for Falcons fans. The 3rd round pick out associated with LSU in 2017 was anticipated to have an immediate impact for the group by many fans, despite the fact that he had been clearly a developmental prospect whenever he was drafted. Certainly, the particular immediate impact of Deion Jones didn't help matters. That said, it's simple to forget why we were all pumped up about Riley when he was drew up. His athleticism is top-notch, having a combine 40 yard dash associated with 4. 58 and a vertical leap of nearly 35 inches. Upon tape, he looked like a player who have could explode to the ball within a fashion very reminiscent of Debo.
However, that potential has not been realized using the Falcons. For whatever reason, Duke has appeared timid and/or lost on the industry at times, missing many tackles on the way. He has flashed moments of that possible, which has only made the disappointment even more significant.
That said, he is nevertheless just 24 years old and on a comparatively cheap rookie contract. He nevertheless has the potential, even if he's proven little to no progress days gone by two years. All it takes is for the sunshine bulb to come on and Fight it out can be a quality starter in this little league. The physical ability is there plus there's little doubt the group wants him to live up to this.
Foye Oluokon, 23 entering their 2nd season with Atlanta
The particular 2018 sixth round pick out associated with Yale was yet another late-round “find” by the Falcons. Oluokon has said this individual wasn't even sure he'd become drafted and now he's in the discussion to be a permanent starter in 2019. While Foye is somewhat small for the position, he more than comprises for it in athleticism. At their pro day, he posted a remarkable 4. 56 40 time plus an impressive 37 inch vertical. Their 20-yard shuttle time of 4. twelve seconds would have been second for any linebackers at the NFL combine.
In the first year with the Falcons, Foye ended up third in tackle price (per Next Gen Stats) at the rear of only Leighton Vander Esch (2018 rookie Pro Bowler) and Darius Leonard (2018 defensive rookie from the year, 2018 first team All-Pro, NFL tackles leader). That is a few impressive company to keep, especially for the sixth rounder out of a college known far more for its academics compared to its athletes.
If there's something Dan Quinn truly believes within, it's putting the best guys within the field. In 2018, Foye noticed increased snaps as the season advanced, a clear sign the coaching employees liked what they saw out of the first year.
And the winner is…
While Now i am still holding out hope for Fight it out, this battle likely goes to Foye for now. I do believe the Falcons will give Riley every opportunity within camp to steal this place back, but Oluokon was breathtaking in his first year. More importantly, whilst Foye showed continual improvement throughout the 2018 season, Riley seemed to stagnate or even regress. That directional distinction in their play is why I be prepared to see Oluokon as a starter once the first regular season game arrives.