For the Atlanta Falcons to improve drastically on defense in 2015, the secondary has to take charge. The linebacker corps still needs one more offseason’s worth of moves before it’s ready to take that next step. Up front though I believe many of the pieces are in place for Dan Quinn, the defensive line has been disastrous the last few seasons and hopefully DQ can coach them up in 2015.
Though the secondary finished dead last in defending the pass last year, I see this unit as the one most likely to lead this 2015 Atlanta Falcons defense. I like the depth in the defensive backfield and Assistant HC Raheem Morris is a guru in teaching pass coverage. The one player I see taking a giant leap forward in his play in the secondary is Robert Alford.
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Alford enters his third season with the Atlanta Falcons after getting drafted in the 2nd Round out of Southeastern Louisiana University in 2013. When Thomas Dimitroff decided to take two corners in the first two rounds of the 2013 NFL Draft, the other being former Washington Husky Desmond Trufant, he had two eyes on the future. In a league becoming increasingly vertical, it’s imperative to have sound players in the secondary.
I’ve loved Robert Alford’s aggressiveness and ball-hawking ability in his first two years in the League. However, he has been the one defensive back most likely to get burnt on a deep ball in his first two seasons. I see Alford’s versatility as a key part to play in multiple spots in the defensive backfield for Dan Quinn. Like rookie CB Jalen Collins, I can see Alford playing on the outside and in the nickel packages for the Falcons this fall. If he improves his cover skills, I think he could have himself close to five interceptions, contingent on if the pass rush ever gets there.
Next: Secondary Positional Game Changer