ESPN’s Adam Schefter was asked about whats to come regarding the Atlanta Falcons offensive line considering that their two best players will be free agents once a new CBA is in place.
“You’re talking about a team that was the NFC’s No. 1 seed last season having major questions along its offensive line. Offensive linemen Tyson Clabo, Justin Blalock and Harvey Dahl all are schedueld to be free agents, and all look like they will be unrestricted. There’s no way that Atlanta will be able to keep all three, it’s unlikely they’ll be able to keep two. So the Falcons are going to have to do some juggling along their offensive line to make sure Matt Ryan is protected and Michael Turner has holes to run through. The Falcons did use a third-round pick on Alabama guard Mike Johnson in 2010, but due to the Julio Jones trade the highest they could draft an offensive lineman this year was in the seventh round, where they took Fresno State guard Andrew Jackson. So Atlanta is going to have some holes to fill. It is going to be one of the most interesting off-season issues that gets the least amount of attention.”
This is a topic that hasn’t gotten enough coverage this offseason despite the fact that there has been little to talk about. The Falcons decision to trade up during this years draft has been widely criticized for what they gave up in return for a receiver. Atlanta’s playoff loss to the Packers (48-21) was bad enough that they should have been looking to addition talent to roster rather than moving up for a vertical receiver.
Losing key players on their offensive line isn’t going to help their passing game when teams aren’t afraid of your running attack. Just ask Tennessee who that worked out for them last season. Schefter mentions that they have some young players that could help them but the prolonged lockout isn’t going to help them get prepared to take over for some of the veteran players.
We have Tyson Clabo and Harvey Dahl listed on our Top 50 Free Agents list.