Of all the rookies who played for the 2015 Atlanta Falcons, defensive back out of LSU Jalen Collins had easily the most frustrating season in his draft class. Surely, he had injuries and setbacks in minicamp and in the preseason, but he didn’t assert himself as the nickelback Atlanta needed defensively as a rookie.
In what was arguably the best area of the Atlanta Falcons’ defense in 2015 with their secondary, Collins looked the most lost of any player in that position group. This group included Ricardo Allen, who had to switch from cornerback to free safety out of necessity, and Kemal Ishmael, who had to play huge snaps when strong safety William Moore got hurt.
While the other members of the Atlanta Falcons’ rookie class certainly had their issues as first-year players, Collins was the 42nd player taken overall in the 2015 NFL Draft. There were questions about his off-the-field issues that made his second round selection hard to rationalize to begin with.
Collins does have the size, length, and speed to become a big player on Dan Quinn’s secondary as a great press coverage cornerback, but he will have to have a great 2016 NFL season to merit his high draft selection in the 2015 NFL Draft.