Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Atlanta Falcons 2024 NFL Mock Draft Roundup 1.0

Throughout the year and leading up to the 2024 NFL Draft, we will update our Atlanta Falcons Mock Draft Roundup showing picks for the Atlanta Falcons from several prominent sites and draft analysts.

The following are picks in recent mock drafts for the Falcons:

EDSFootball - Kevin Hanson (5/9)

7. Dallas Turner, EDGE, Alabama

The Falcons have spent three Friday selections on edge defenders — Arnold Ebiketie (38th, 2022), DeAngelo Malone (82nd, 2022) and Zach Harrison (75th, 2023) — in the past two draft classes. For a team that has consistently ranked at or near the bottom of the league in sacks recently, however, investing more (and even higher) draft capital to fix the problem would make sense. Turner is an explosive edge rusher with 18 TFLs and 12.5 sacks in his first two seasons at Alabama.

CBS Sports - Josh Edwards (5/8)

8. Drake Maye, QB, North Carolina

Maye has the arm strength and size but decision-making needs to improve.

ESPN - Todd McShay (5/4)

7. Jared Verse, EDGE, Florida State

I had Verse in my midseason top 32 rankings for the 2023 class before he decided to go back to school. And he'll be high on the board again for 2024 after compiling nine sacks and 16.5 tackles for loss last season. The snap in his hips and hands jumps out on tape, and he's at his best overwhelming offensive tackles with speed-to-power. Verse also mixes in an effective inside move and can beat interior linemen clean when he kicks inside. The Falcons were 31st in sacks last year (21) and might be replacing Calais Campbell and Bud Dupree next offseason. (As an aside, Atlanta could be in the quarterback market, too. Desmond Ridder hasn't secured the long-term gig just yet.)

The Athletic - Dane Brugler (5/2)

8. Jared Verse, EDGE, Florida State

A projected first-round pick had he entered the 2023 NFL Draft, Verse enjoyed his first year in Tallahassee and decided to stay for another season. His play speed and NFL-quality hand usage make it tough for blockers to control him.

CBS Sports - Ryan Wilson (5/2)

8. Dallas Turner, EDGE, Alabama

Turner had to share the spotlight with Will Anderson at Alabama. He'll be the alpha pass rusher in Tuscaloosa in '23.

Fox Sports - Rob Rang (5/1)

3. Drake Maye, QB, North Carolina

The selection of Bijan Robinson with their first-round pick in 2023 proves these Falcons are not changing their feathers. This will continue to be a run-first offense. Desmond Ridder is going to have his opportunity to prove that he should be the Falcons' long-term quarterback, but if Atlanta is picking this early again in 2023, Maye might be viewed as simply too good to pass up.

The 33rd Team (5/1)

12. J.J. McCarthy, QB, Michigan

J.J. McCarthy has the tools to do everything on the football field with a big arm and rushing ability. He needs to refine his game because he has been erratic at times, but he has a chance to be a highly touted prospect in next year's draft. Similarly to Washington, the Atlanta Falcons are going to roll with a young quarterback, Desmond Ridder. They have put some nice pieces around Ridder through the draft in the past couple of years, so if he does not progress, expect them to be in the quarterback market.

PFF - Max Chadwick (5/1)

9. Jared Verse, EDGE, Florida State

Like Fashanu, Verse would've likely been a first-round selection in 2023 had he declared. Instead, he enters next season as a projected top-10 pick in 2024. The former Albany edge dominated in his first season at the FBS level, as his 24.4% pass-rush win rate was fourth among Power Five edge defenders while his 10 tackles for loss/no gain tied for sixth.

For the Win - Christian D'Andrea (4/30)

11. Michael Penix Jr., QB, Washington

The Falcons are content to roll with Desmond Ridder, Tyler Allgeier and eighth overall pick Bijan Robinson as part of a run-heavy offense in 2023. If that fails to pan out, Penix could be the next man up as a mobile quarterback who can thrive on the ground as well as make big throws through the air. His 2022 transfer to Washington paid off big dividends; another such season could cement his place as a Day 1 prospect.

USA Today - Michael Middlehurst-Schwartz (4/30)

7. Dallas Turner, EDGE, Alabama

At some point, the Falcons have to make a significant investment in a pass rush that has posted just 39 sacks in the last two years — easily the lowest total of any team during that span. Though Turner hasn't been able to match the prolific production of former Crimson Tide teammate Will Anderson Jr. the 6-4, 242-pounder has all the tools to become the school's next defensive dynamo.

MORE TEAMS: All NFL Team Mock Draft Roundups

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