Atlanta Journal-Constitution sports journalist D. Orlando Ledbetter is your authority on the Atlanta Falcons. Hear what the players are saying and get inside analysis from one of the most respected reporters in the NFL. Listen to new episodes every Wednesday during the off-season wherever you get your podcasts. Learn more ajc.com/sports.
With little money to participate in free agency and several major surprises, the Falcons had a tumultuous offseason that changed the direction of the franchise. We'll look back on the offseason from the completion of their 7-10 season through the trade of Matt Ryan and the mandatory minicamp. AJC columnist Mark Bradley drops by to help us reflect on the offseason.
The Falcons are set to wrap up their final minicamp practice and several position battles are set up for training camp. The No. 1 battle will be at the quarterback position between Marcus Mariota and Desmond Ridder to see who will replace Matt Ryan. There are several other position battles on both sides of the football that will be intriguing when the team reconvenes in late July.
Falcons defensive coordinator Dean Pees said the defense operated on 60% of the scheme last season, but will move to 100% in 2022. It was also noted that while the defense was 29th in scoring points allowed, they were 19th in explosive pass rate and 13th in explosive run rates. They didn't give up big plays, but they'll need to get more stops. Also, outside linebacker coach Ted MOnachino and assistant defensive line coach L...
For the first time in 14 seasons, the Falcons are set to have a new starting quarterback. We discussed the situation during our one-on-one with head coach Arthur Smith. We also spoked to quarterbacks coach Charles London and quarterback Marcus Mariota. The Falcons want to get Mariota ready after two seasons as a reserve, develop rookie quarterback Desmond Ridder and find a role of Feleipe Franks. We also give you the five players t...
The Falcons are set to hold their rookie minicamp Friday through Sunday at the team facilities in Flowery Branch. First-round pick Drake London, the wide receiver from USC, is looking forward to blending in with the team's culture. He will take things slowly because he's coming off a fracture ankle, but will be expected to contributed this season coach Arthur Smith said. Also, we hear from Arkansas running backs coach Jimmy...
The Falcons drafted Desmond Ridder in the third round of the 2022 NFL draft. He was taken with the 74th overall pick. He will start out behind Marcus Mariota and is looking to compete for the starting position at some juncture. Ridder, general manager Terry Fontenot and coach Arthur Smith stop by to discuss the quarterback situation. Also, Baltimore's Kyle Hamilton stops by and we here from Falcons draft picks DeAngelo Malone, ...
The Atlanta Falcons went into the draft with nine picks and came out with eight players including, a big wide receiver, a developmental quarterback and two players from the national championship Georgia football team. They hadn't drafted a player from Georgia since taking linebacker Akeem Dent in the third round of the 2011 draft.
The Atlanta Falcons selected former USC wide receiver Drake London with the eighth overall pick in the draft. London is 6-foot-4 and 219 points. He's a tough and rugged receiver known for catching contested passes. The Falcons needed to add to the wide receiver group after losing Russell Gage in free agency and Calvin Ridley to an indefinite gambling suspension.
Falcons general manager Terry Fontenot and coach Arthur Smith discuss all of the team's issues for the upcoming 2022 NFL draft. Fontenot noted that this is an "unique" draft with a lot of unknowns at the top of the draft. The Falcons have heavily scouted the quarterback group, but plan to select the best player available.
The Atlanta Falcons started their offseason program on Tuesday with several new faces, including quarterback Marcus Mariota, taking the field. Cornerback A.J. Terrell and left tackle Jake Matthews discuss how the team plans to move forward without so many key starters from last season, including quarterback Matt Ryan, who was traded to the Colts. We also discuss the HBCU draft prospects, the Falcons' draft order and the AJC'...
With several teams looking for versatile pass rushers, Georgia's Travon Walker is moving up NFL draft board. Michigan's Aidan Hutchinson and Oregon's Kayvon Tibodeaux are also highly regarded. In this episode, we look at the top defensive players in the draft at each position and hear from new Atlanta Falcons' Lorenzo Carter and Elijah Wilkinson. The draft is set for April 28-30 in Las Vegas.
The Falcons are heavily scouting quarterbacks Malik Willis of Liberty and Kenny Pickett of Pittsburgh for the upcoming NFL draft. We look at the pros and cons of drafting a quarterback with the eighth overall pick. We also preview our position-by-position rankings for the offensive side of the ball. Also, new running back Damien Williams and cornerback Casey Hayward stop to discuss why they signed with the Falcons.
Things have calmed down for the Atlanta Falcons after they failed to land Deshaun Watson in a trade and then traded franchise quarterback Matt Ryan to the Indianapolis Colts. The dust has started to settle as we look at what the team has done in free agency and their plans with new quarterback Marcus Mariota. Also, Colts coach Frank Reich stops by to say how "super excited" he is to have Ryan in Nap Town.
The Matt Ryan era in Atlanta is over, so what will the Falcons do now? In this edition of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Bow Tie Chronicles podcast, AJC Falcons beat reporter D. Orlando Ledbetter interviews the former Falcons QB moments after he walks off the stage at his introductory press conference in Indianapolis.
Ryan and Ledbetter discuss the timeline of how the trade went down, why Ryan chose to leave and how he will rema...
The Falcons reportedly have restructured Matt Ryan's contract to create $12 million in salary cap room and granted left tackle Jake Matthews a three-year $55.5 million contract extension. The Falcons have made it a point to re-sign their own players and signed kicker Younghoe Koo to a five-year, $24.5 million deal on Tuesday. We look at Tom Brady's return and want it means to the rest of the NFC South.
Falcons wide receiver Calvin Ridley was suspended by the National Football League for a year for beating on games. He was away from the team attending to his mental well-being when he bet on games in November. We discuss Ridley's situation, the winners and losers from the scouting combine, the valuation of the Falcons top free agents and how the Falcons plan to clear salary cap space to sign players with the new league year set...
Falcons general manager Terry Fontenot and coach Arthur Smith are looking for players with the right championship makeup, ethos and culture at the NFL scouting combine. The Falcons had formal interviews with the quarterbacks and wide receivers on Monday. They also discussed the quarterbacks, the depth of the draft, the offensive line candidates and wide receiver Calvin Ridley.
This is an important upcoming draft for the Atlanta Falcons, who will heavily scout the NFL scouting combine next week in Indianapolis. There will be several players, including players from Georgia and Georgia Tech, from the state participating at Lucas Oil Stadium. There wasn't a combine last season because of the coronavirus pandemic and the field events will be televised Thursday through Sunday on NFL Network.
Falcons owner Arthur Blank was at the Super Bowl and chatted about how competitive the team was last season, plans for the future at the quarterback position, how they have more money for free agents this year and how excited he is for tight end Kyle Pitts. Also, we make a Super Bowl LVI prediction.
Falcons general manager Terry Fontenot, head coach Arthur Smith and senior vice president of player personnel Kyle Smith headed up the team's contingent at the 73rd annual Senior Bowl, the premier pre-draft All-Star game in Mobile, Alabama. Director Jim Nagy, Pitt quarterback Kenny Pickett, Alabama defensive tackle Phidarian "Phil" Mathis and Georgia guard Jamaree Salyer drop by to discuss the week.
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