Kyle Cerge-Henderson and Brad Stewart both received invites to rookie mini-camp. Cerge-Henderson will be heading down to Tampa Bay to attend the Buccaneers rookie mini-camp while Stewart will be going to San Francisco to attend the 49ers rookie mini-camp. All Kyle Cerge-Henderson wants is a chance and he will have it. Cerge-Henderson had a good senior season with the Jackets as he had 27 tackles which led all nose tackles on the team. Both the Falcons and Buccaneers had interest in Cerge-Henderson as they liked what they saw from his Georgia Tech pro day and the one that he had earlier this month with both teams.
As for Brad Stewart, he is coming off a decent senior season where caught 15 passes and had 268 receiving yards. He also had 3 touchdowns as well. The 15 passes caught were a career high for Stewart. If both Cerge-Henderson and Stewart perform well at their mini-camps then they will sign as undrafted free agents. Best of luck to both of these former Jackets as they pursue their NFL dreams.
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Georgia Tech hybrid Safety/LB, Jalen Johnson, has gotten his chance in the NFL. According to the AJC, the former Yellow Jacket has accepted a rookie mini camp invite with our own Atlanta Falcons and will join Desmond Branch, who accepted an invite from the Falcons yesterday.
Each will be trying out and hope to perform well enough for the team to sign them as UDFA.
TaQuon Marshall and Desmond Branch both took a step towards their NFL dreams late Saturday night as they each received, and accepted, invitations to rookie mini camp. Marshall will attended the Ravens camp and Branch will stay right here in Atlanta and attended rookie mini camp with the Falcons.
We all know Marshall for being a an option QB but he will look to follow the same steps that Keenan Reynolds, former Navy QB who turned WR in the NFL, did when he was drafted y the Ravens. Marshall is one of the hardest working individuals and he just needed a chance and he got one and it would not surprise me one bit to stick on the Ravens roster.
Desmond Branch was a force for the Jackets DLine as he was a two year starter and he hopes to make his mark for Coach Quinn and make the roster. I certainly believe he can, and he’s going to a Falcons team that desperately needs help on the DLine.
We wish the best to both Marshall and Branch as they begin their NFL journeys!
It is officially NFL Draft day and two of our own writers, Bob Lancaster and Bret Anderson, got together and put together their mock drafts for what could happen later on tonight!
Bret Anderson’s picks:
Arizona Cardinals: Kyler Murray, QB Oklahoma
This Kingsbury’s guy. The Cardinals start off the new regime the QB they think fits best under their new offensive system as they should. Murray is a proven winner and adds an extra element to the Cardinals offense.
San Francisco 49ers: Nick Bosa, DE Ohio State
The best player in this draft. San Francisco averaged just 2.0 sacks a game last season which ranked in the bottom half of the league but Bosa will surely help in that category.
New York Jets: Quinnen Williams, DL Alabama
This pick could end up being traded to a team like the Redskins for Haskins, but the Jets can not pass on a player like Quinnen Williams. Their run defense was terrible last season, so why not get the best interior lineman in the draft.
Oakland Raiders: Ed Oliver, DL Houston
The Raiders had an atrocious pass rush last season, and just a bad defensive line in general. Ed Oliver can play inside or outside and the Raiders “Love” him and he fills one of many needs for the Raiders.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Devin White, LB LSU
Kwon Alexander is now a 49er so this means the Bucs need linebacker help with their new 3-4 scheme. White has a nose for the football and flies all over the field. Seems like a no brainer here.
New York Giants: Josh Allen, DE Kentucky
The Giants need a pass rusher in the worst way and Allen is a freak athlete who had a superb senior season at Kentucky with 17 sacks. Again, seems like this is a perfect fit.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Jawaan Taylor, OT Florida
Jaguars think they signed their new franchise QB in Nick Foles and well that means you need to protect him. Taylor went to the University of Florida and the Jags love to draft in state kids.
Detroit Lions: T.J. Hockenson, TE Iowa
The Lions just need help. They have been stuck in the mud for a while and while they could elect to go with Montez Sweat here, but they Matt Patricia knows how valuable a TE can be fom his days in New England. Hockenson gives Stafford a big weapon and a guy who could end up being a top TE in the NFL in a couple years.
Buffalo Bills: Jonah Williams, OT Alabama
Bills got their QB last year in Josh Allen and they just lost their LT in Dion Dawkins. Dline help is needed but protecting your QB of the future is more important.
Denver Broncos: Drew Lock, QB Missouri
Joe Flacco is not the answer in Denver plain and simple. John Elway has tried and failed before to draft a QB early but this time he hits a jackpot with Drew Lock. Haskins is also a possibility here.
Cincinnati Bengals: Rashan Gary, DL/Edge Michigan
The Bengals need another pass rusher and there is no secret there. Gary has raised concerns with his injury issues, but when he’s healthy, he has top 10 talent.
Green Bay Packers: Devin Bush, LB
It is a toss up between Noah Fant or Devin Bush here but the Packers continue to build their defense up and I belie address offense with their second pick in the first round.
Miami Dolphins: Christian Wilkins, DL Clemson
The Dolphins had one of the worst run defenses in the NFL last season and also struggled to get to the QB. Wilkins can do both and is extremely talented. This is a perfect fit. Dark horse candidate for Josh Rosen.
Atlanta Falcons: Dexter Lawrence. DL Clemson
The Falcons need defensive line help and Lawrence is a beast up front. 340 pounds that can move quick. Many question if he would even go in the first since he was suspended for PEDs in the College Football Playoff, but those questions have faded. A big talent that is needed up front for the Falcons.
Washington Redskins: Dwayne Haskins, QB Ohio State
Haskins will be on the Redskins roster one way or another after Thursday night. He is their guy.
Carolina Panthers: Brian Burns, DE Florida State
Carolina ranked 27th in sacks per a game last season, and Burns is one of the best pass rushers in this draft.
New York Giants: Daniel Jones, QB Duke
The Giants love him and there is a connection between the two and Jones’s college coach tutored Eli Manning. Could potentially be a reach here at 17, or you could see some more defense here.
Minnesota Vikings: Andre Dillard, OT Washington State
The Vikings need some help up front and Dillard is that guy. Terrific pass blocker and will also help improve the running game.
Tennessee Titians: Montez Sweat, DE Mississippi State
A top 5 talent who’s stock has fallen due to a heart condition. We have seen things like this in the past, including last season with Maurice Hurst. Sweat still blew everybody away at the combine with his 40 time that would be considered “fast” for a receiver. Titians roll the dice and get a steal here.
Pittsburgh Steelers: Byron Murphy, CB Washington
Need some young faces in the secondary and Murphy is one of the best Corners in this draft. Will have time to be patient and fully develop behind a couple veterans in Haden and Nelson.
Seattle Seahawks: Clein Ferrell, DE/LB Clemson
Seahawks could trade down but with Ferrell sitting on the board, you take him and run. They have to replace Frank Clark and this is a good quality pick late in the first that could end up being a steal.
Baltimore Ravens: Garrett Bradbury, C NC State
Again, another team that needs help protecting their future at QB,
Houston Texans: Cody Ford, OL Oklahoma
Some see this low for Cody Ford. Several don’t see him sliding past the Falcons at 14, but the Texans offensive line needs some help, and they will pounce on this pick if Ford indeed falls this far.
Oakland Raiders: Noah Fant, TE Iowa
Raiders lost Jared Cook and can get a very reliable guy in Fant to replace him. Perfect fit ad gives Carr another weapon to throw to long side Antonio Brown.
Philadelphia Eagles: Jerry Tillery, DT Notre Dame
Eagles defense was bad last season, mainly because of their pass rush. Tillery can create chaos in the middle and get to the QB.
Indianapolis Colts: Johnathan Abram, S Mississippi State
A guy who’s stock has exploded and the Colts seem to be a perfect fit to tighten up their secondary and potentially give them another piece to the puzzle.
Oakland Raiders: Greedy Williams, CB LSU
Raiders again need help everywhere on defense and they land what everybody considers the top corner in the draft. He is sort of a project because his tackling is something that holds him back.
Los Angeles Chargers: Dalton Risner, OL Kansas State
Interior offensive line is a need for the Chargers who have a very solid team coming back. A little more beef up front on both sides of the ball and they are a real threat in the AFC.
Seattle Seahawks: Chauncey Gardner Johnson, S Florida
They get right back where they left off, CGJ is a long and athletic and can be a replacement for Kam Chancelor.
Green Bay Packers: Irv Smith Jr, TE Alabama
Jimmy Graham’s days in Green Bay are numbered and Irv Smith is versatile tight end that would make a leap with a guy like Aaron Rodgers throwing him the ball.
Los Angeles Rams: Jeffrey Simmons, DT Mississippi State
They have to replace Suh and Simmons has a chance to be a big time threat beside Aaron Doanld once he recovers from the knee injury.
New England Patriots: D.K. Metcalf, WR Ole Miss
Cause Why not give Brady another weapon?
Sleeper QB that could go in round 1: Will Grier
Bob Lancaster’s picks:
1. Arizona- Kyler Murray QB Oklahoma
2. San Francisco 49ers – Nick Bosa Edge Rush Ohio State
3. New York Jets- Quinnen Williams DT Alabama Look to see a few teams try and trade up here
4. Oakland Raiders- Josh Allen Edge Rush Kentucky/ Kyler Murray if Arizona takes Bosa
5. Tampa Bay Bucaneers- Devin White LB LSU / Redskins try and get this pick for Lock or Haskins
6. New York Giants- Drew Lock QB Missouri
7. Jacksonville Jaguars- Jawaan Taylor OT Florida
8. Detroit Lions- Rashan Gary Edge Rush Michigan
9. Buffalo Bills- TJ Hockenson TE Iowa / I think Falcons or Seahawks trade for Ed Oliver
The Falcons announced on Wednesday afternoon that they have picked up the 5th year option on Pro Bowl Safety Keanu Neal for the 2020 season. Neal, who is coming off a torn ACL last year against the Eagles in week 1 is entering his 4th year in the NFL and hopes to bring a spark back to the defense this season.
The Falcons continue to add depth to both sides of the lines of scrimmage on Tueday when they signed old friend, Defensive End Chris Odom from the AAF and OT John Wetzel.
Odom was a member of the Falcons during the 2017 preseason and was released and went on to the spend the remainder of the season in Green Bay. In the AAF, he tallied up 2.5 sacks in 8 games for the Salt Lake Stallions. Odom’s deal is for two years.
John Wetzel signed a one year deal and was key piece in the Arizona Cardinal offensive line the past 3 seasons, but had his 2018 season end early due to a neck injury this past November. He appeared in 40 games in Arizona while starting in 24 of them.
Neither one of these deals are going to have other contenders scrambling to make a counter move, but they are quality signings that provide much needed depth in the trenches.