Atlanta Falcons 2014 NFL Draft Review

 

The Sports Network

(SportsNetwork.com) - Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M; 2 (37) - Ra'Shede Hageman DT, Minnesota; 3 (68) - Dezmen Southward, FS, Wisconsin; 4 (103) - Devonta Freeman, RB, Florida State; 4 (139) - Prince Shembo, OLB, Notre Dame; 5 (147) - Ricardo Allen, CB, Purdue; 5 (168) - Marquis Spruill, ILB, Syracuse; 7 (253) - Yawin Smallwood, OLB, UConn; 7 (255) - Tyler Starr, OLB, South Dakota

Top Picks Analysis: The Falcons had visions of trading up for the No. 1 pick in the draft, South Carolina star pass rusher Jadeveon Clowney, but that was cost prohibitive so they stayed put at No. 6 and went with offensive tackle Jake Matthews, a safe pick at a need position.

Minnesota defensive tackle Ra'Shede Hageman is a boom-or-bust prospect with a very high ceiling as a player, while Wisconsin safety Dezmen Southward was another need pick and will be given every opportunity to replace the departed Thomas DeCoud as William Moore's running mate.

Best Value Pick: Fourth-round selection Prince Shembo of Notre Dame lacks the length to be an every down difference maker on the edge but he has the instincts and toughness to be a solid situational pass rusher for a team that is desperate for one.

Questionable Calls: Hageman flashes but has always lacked consistency on the college level. A move to the five-technique at the professional level could either accentuate his natural physical skills or turn him into a tweener with no real position.

Summary: Matthews is as safe as it gets at No. 6 overall and will certainly be a welcome addition for Matt Ryan but general manager Thomas Dimitroff really rolled the dice after the Texas A&M legacy.

FINAL GRADE: B

Undrafted rookie free agent signings: DT/FB Roosevelt Nix, Kent State; RB Jerome Smith, Syracuse; CB Tay Glover-Wright, Utah State; OL James Stone, Tennessee; WR Geraldo Boldewijn, Boise State; QB Jeff Matthews, Cornell; WR Bernard Reedy, Toledo; DE Jacques Smith, Tennessee; P Matt Yoklic, Pittsburgh; DL Nosa Eguae, Auburn; WR Freddie Martino, North Greenville; LB Brenden Daley, Hawaii; TE Jacob Pederson, Wisconsin; S Kimario McFadden, South Carolina; DE Walker May, Vanderbilt; DT Donte Rumph, Kentucky; S Javon Marshall, Vanderbilt; S Jestin Love, Central Arkansas; K Drew Basil, Ohio State FB Maurice Hagens, Miami; CB Devonta Glover-Wright, Utah State

Read more Football Wires stories from the Miami Herald

Join the
Discussion

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category