Atlanta Falcons: Top 5 Defensive Players for 2015

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Jun 17, 2015; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Quinn coaches during minicamp at Falcons Training Facility. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Falcons are looking to improve this year.  New Head Coach Dan Quinn inherits a top-tier passing game, promising young defensive backs, and a great special teams unit.  He also gets a non-existent running game, a pass rush that scares no one, and a linebacker corps that might be the weakest in football.

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Will the Falcons drastically improve in all areas of weakness in 2015?  Unlikely, but expect for Quinn’s team to play more inspired and strive for excellence this fall.  Bringing in Kyle Shanahan as offensive coordinator with his zone blocking scheme could go a long way in establishing a formidable rushing attack.

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Quinn brings in a new defensive philosophy to Flowery Branch that requires players to play as fast as they possible can.  “Don’t think, just do” might be exactly what this young defense needs to start gaining confidence as professional athletes.  And outside of the always entertaining DL Coach Bryan Cox, Quinn will feature an entirely new defensive staff including DC Richard Smith, Assistant HC Raheem Morris, and LBs Coach Jeff Ulbrich.

To me more than anything, it has been the Atlanta Falcons inability to stop anyone on defense that has caused the team to struggle so much the last two seasons.  Matt Ryan and the passing game essentially had to win shootouts to lead the Falcons to victory on Sundays.

While I do foresee more balance on the 2015 Atlanta Falcons, I do believe that this year’s team will once again have to have the offense carry it to ultimately make the playoffs.  But I do sense that the defense will improve in part to these five players.  Here are the five most important players on the Atlanta Falcons defense in 2015.

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