Atlanta, GA, USA; Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets defensive end Jeremiah Attaochu (45) celebrates a tackle for a loss in the second half against the North Carolina Tar Heels at Bobby Dodd Stadium. Georgia Tech won 28-20. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports
The Atlanta Falcons need a pass-rusher in the worst way, and if things break perfectly, they may not need to look very far from their home base in Flowery Branch. Georgia Tech defensive end/outside linebacker Jeremiah Attaochu has been quickly rising up draft boards, and with the Falcons currently in possession of the 37th overall pick, there could be a real fit between the two parties.
In fairness, the “dream scenario” for the Atlanta Falcons would almost certainly be to draft Jadeveon Clowney in the first round (either at #6 or higher), and if that move happens, this scenario is virtually moot. However, it is increasingly likely that Clowney will be off the board by the time the Falcons can make their initial selection, and if that is the case, the pundits seem to be projecting an offensive tackle (Greg Robinson, Jake Matthews, Taylor Lewan) as the most likely selection for Atlanta.
Enter Jeremiah Attaochu, who was one of the best pass-rushers in all of college football last season (12.5 sacks) and who has an extended pedigree (school-record of 31.5 sacks) of doing the exact thing that the Falcons desire. The Georgia Tech stud had an incredible showing at his school’s Pro Day, when he ran a 40-yard dash in the high-4.5 to low-4.6 range with an incredible 1.55-second 10-yard split that would rank at the very apex of all pass-rushers in this year’s draft.
Pro Day numbers almost have to be taken with a grain of salt, but one things seems to be universal, and that is that Attaochu knows how to rush the passer. It should certainly be noted that we aren’t “projecting” Attaochu to the Atlanta Falcons with the 37th pick because, well, that would be crazy given the shear amount of available scenarios. However, the two sides have the common link of the city that they call home, and with Attaochu rising and the Falcons’ great need, we can dream of a match made in heaven.