Recent News

Atlanta Falcons Extend President Rich McKay, Coach Mike Smith and GM Thomas Dimitroff

January 28th, 2014 at 10:15 PM
By Graham Waldrop

Like it or not, the current regime is here to stay for the foreseeable future.  The Falcons announced that they have extended the contracts of President Rich McKay, coach Mike Smith and General Manager Thomas Dimitroff.

McKay is the only member of the trio to receive a multiyear extension.  His extension is good for four more years.  Smith and Dimitroff have each received a one year extension.

This further confirms owner Arthur Blank's trust in the current brain trust.  McKay has been with the organization since 2003, and was the team's general manager for five seasons.  He became the team's president in 2008.  McKay was reportedly being courted by Tampa Bay to return to Florida to become the team's general manager once again, but those rumors did not come to fruition.  McKay is here to stay.

Dimitroff and Smith have been GM and coach respectively since 2008.  Smith has a career record of 60-33 and is the Falcons franchise leader in wins as a coach.  Under Dimitroff and Smith's leadership, the Falcons enjoyed five consecutive winning seasons, two division titles and one playoff victory.  

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Atlanta Falcons Hire Scott Pioli to Become Assistant General Manager

January 22nd, 2014 at 5:32 PM
By Graham Waldrop

Scott Pioli has had his share of incredibly high times and low times working in an NFL front office, and now he has entered into another low one by becoming the Falcons Assistant General Manager as of today.

Although by convincing Pioli to become the Assistant GM, the Falcons have added what could be an incredible asset to turn around this organization.

Pioli has an outstanding resume, particularly at the beginning of his career, when he was chief in orchestrating the New England Patriots' run of dominance in the early to mid 2000s in which they won four AFC Championships and three Super Bowls.  Pioli has not fared as well after serving as the GM for the Kansas City Chiefs after leaving the Patriots in 2008, but there's no denying his addition to this Falcons organization could turn out to be a valuable one.

Piolli has likely been brought into help out his former pupil, Thomas Dimitroff, with player scouting.  Pioli has had a keen eye for talent over his career and has made impact moves for the various teams he has served under over the years, including being part of the group that drafted Ray Lewis in Baltimore, to being the man responsible for trading for and discovering arguably the league's best slot receiver in Wes Welker during his days in New England.

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Atlanta Falcons Director of Player Personnel Lionel Vital to Stay with Team

January 20th, 2014 at 9:27 PM
By Graham Waldrop

After interviewing with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for their vacant GM job, Falcons director of player personnel Lionel Vital has decided to stay put with the team.  It's not known whether or not Vital was offered the position, but regardless, he will resume his duties with the Falcons.

Vital has been working under Thomas Dimitroff over the last five seasons and was promoted to director of player personnel last year.

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Atlanta Falcons Top Free Agent Targets: Part 2- Defensive Line

January 19th, 2014 at 1:52 PM
By Graham Waldrop

After covering a couple of players the Falcons could target in free agency to plug the holes of the offensive line, here are a couple of players we think could plug some holes on the defensive line.

GREG HARDY, DE, 25 YEARS OLD

Greg Hardy had one of the best years of any defensive end in the NFL, and Falcons fans should know him very well after he punished us all year long.

Hardy has been with the Panthers his entire career and finished the season with 15 sacks, five tackles for loss and 39 solo tackles.  The 15 sacks and five tackles for loss were career highs for the young man out of Ole Miss.

Hardy's sack numbers have increased every season.  He recorded three in his first season, four in his second season and then exploded in 2012 with 11 sacks.  This year's 15 sacks is showing that Hardy is getting better and better at getting to the quarterback as the years go on.  At only age 25, the sky is the limit for this player.  While he would be a pricey free agent, he would add instant impact to a Falcons defense that only recorded 32 sacks this year.  That means that Hardy, by himself, recorded just under half the amount of sacks that the Falcons recorded this year.

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Atlanta Falcons’ Desmond Trufant Named to Pro Football Writers of America All Rookie Team

January 16th, 2014 at 1:06 AM
By Graham Waldrop

In all the horror of the Falcons 4-12 season, the very impressive rookie season of Desmond Trufant was hard to see unless you were watching very closely.  But now, the rookie CB and the Falcons' first pick of last year's draft, is being recognized for his work on the field that to the public, went mostly unheralded.  

'Desmond Trufant' photo (c) 2013, Thomson20192 - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Now that the dust has settled, we can see that Trufant's quietly impressive season is garnering the recognition it deserves.  Trufant, along with Tyraan Mathieu, were named to the all rookie team at corner back, selected by the Pro Football Writers of America.

While Trufant struggled a bit in his initial transition into the NFL, he settled in nicely.  Most notably, while he didn't have many interceptions (two), he had a ton of pass deflections (17).  He also recorded 73 total tackles and if this trend continues, Trufant could be in for a monster season next year.  Trufant's play the rest of his Falcons career will be directly tied to GM Thomas Dimitroff's faith in him by using his first pick to strengthen what was a gutted secondary in last year's offseason.

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