Feb 3, 2015; Flowery Branch, GA, USA; Atlanta Falcons team owner Arthur Blank (left) and new head coach Dan Quinn pose for a photo during a press conference at the Falcons Training Facility. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
The Atlanta Falcons are a week into 2015’s Training Camp at Flowery Branch. Though it is far too early to tell what type of season our favorite team will have, you have to feel confident that things are trending in the right direction under first year Head Coach Dan Quinn, formerly the Defensive Coordinator of the two-time reigning NFC Champion Seattle Seahawks.
It seems like every player on the Atlanta Falcons roster is buying into a the culture change up in Flowery Branch. Players like Julio Jones and Roddy White are doing whatever it takes to get the Dirty Birds back into the postseason, putting team before self as the new coaching regime is perfecting installs.
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Outside of the team’s perennial Pro Bowl caliber players like Jones, White, QB Matt Ryan, and KR/WR Devin Hester, many of our Atlanta Falcons need to rise up for the team to get back to their winning ways under the first five seasons of the Mike Smith Era.
I’m talking about guys that need to take the next step in the development as NFL players. Not necessarily becoming Pro Bowlers this year in 2015, with the exception being CB Desmond Trufant, but attaining that level of an undisputed starter in the National Football League, regardless of what team they play for.
While I hope that dozens of players improve under HC Dan Quinn, DC Richard Smith, and OC Kyle Shanahan, I feel that at least five veteran guys need to step up for the Atlanta Falcons to have a strong 2015 season. Here are the five players I see as having a breakout year for the Dirty Birds this fall.
Next: Versatility in the Defensive Backfield