Once we continue to think about the 2019 Atlanta Falcons and what's coming down the pike, let's focus in on the protection overall and what's possible heading ahead.
After a very sound 2017 season that saw the team's young defensive stars like Grady Jarrett, Deion Jones, Keanu Neal, Ricardo Allen, and De'Vondre Campbell come into their own in major methods and the defensive line actually bag the quarterback, the unit plummeted within 2018 thanks to injuries and sketchy roster decisions.
In 2019, the particular team made some noticeable modifications to help fix the defensive issues.
Dan Quinn assumed defensive perform calling duties from Marquand Manuel, Adrian Clayborn was brought back following a year stint in New Britain, Tyeler Davison was recruited to assist with the run and rookie CBS television studios Kendall Sheffield and Jordan Burns and DE John Cominsky to assist with the continued youth movement.
Apart from that, the team will rely on healthful versions of Jones, Neal plus Allen to return to their critical places in Quinn's scheme and DQ's coaching to elevate the play associated with inconsistent edge rushers Vic Beasley and Takkarist McKinley.
They'll furthermore hope re-signed defensive tackle Ra'Shede Hageman can earn his location back on the team and put on the comeback and young players their best starting cornerback Isaiah Oliver, probably weakside linebacker Foyesade Oluokun plus 2018 interception leader Damontae Kazee can build on what they did a final season.
This defense is a secret right now, but the grand improvements will need to come from two big things: development and health.
For development, the team is going to have to develop in its creativity in calling protective schemes and positioning its gamers in spots that best match their strengths. We saw really that when Quinn was calling the particular plays in 2016 than we now have in the DQ ere of Falcons football. The 2018 defense had been often listless and predictable, aspects that cannot rule the day when improvement is the aim.
Growth through young players like Oliver, supposing Robert Alford's snaps, Oluokun plus Kazee, the new nickel corner, may also be key. The team needs all those guys, in particular, to come through along with added responsibility.
We've talked aplenty about Beasley and McKinley's essential need for growth, so we'll save this plain and simple: if those two tend not to grow into the trust placed straight into them to be consistent factors from the edge, the Falcons will find it difficult to generate exterior pressure this season.
Development can also come for a guy such as Desmond Trufant, who needs to develop into being one of the league's best corners again. He's always been an excellent player, but his contract requires he be great. His development into being one of the elder statesmen on the defense is paramount.
Getting Jones, Neal, and Allen all back together on the industry will change at least somewhat of this defense's outlook. Jones is the field marshal for the front seven and regulates the team's in-game defensive schematics. His communications get the guys ready and make sure they're making appropriate adjustments when things are noticed in the opposing offensive formations.
Not just is he an elite talent that has stellar coverage skills and is a better run defender, he's a cerebral captain for this unit. The protection looked somewhat improved toward the final of 2018 just because Jones had been getting back to that role.
Neal could be the team's sledgehammer and sets the particular tone in the run defense and the defense's total physicality. Novice some time since we've seen your pet bullying opponents, and the team skipped that torpedo factor greatly final season. Neal also excels within coverage and has been known to view over the tight end, a thorn in the 2018 team's side.
Allen runs the communication on the back and provides a strong dose of management and poise for the defense. You can tell the secondary wasn't since efficient last season because they were missing the guidance they get through Allen. He's also a very good totally free safety, though Kazee did a good admirable job filling in and had a lot more ball hawking.
Jones will be ready to move, but Neal and Allen continue to be rehabbing from respective ACL plus Achilles injuries. Allen is the crazy card who might not be quite prepared, but both guys do have audio chances to be back on the industry in Week 1. The group needs them.
If the Falcons may grow on defense and come back their trio of key gamers to health, this defense may continue to reach its potential.
If this does not, it will remain stagnant during a period where it cannot afford in order to, waste another year of its greatest players' respective primes and power some difficult decisions after the period.
More Atlanta Falcon Articles:
Atlanta Falcons News and Gear