Atlanta Falcons: Backup Tight End is the Team’s Only Upgrade

Atlanta Falcons, Luke Stocker (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Atlanta Falcons, Luke Stocker (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) /
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Atlanta Falcons
Atlanta Falcons, Ty Sambrailo (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) /

The Atlanta Falcons continue to mold their roster, with eyes on once again becoming a Super Bowl contender. Most of these improvements must come through the draft, with backup tight end being the only major upgrade in Free Agency so far.

The Atlanta Falcons have made some minor moves, with hopes of patching up some major areas of need on offense. Salary cap restrictions have kept the team from making a major splash in this year’s free agent market. I spoke on some of the reasons why Atlanta is restricted in this article. Despite the lack of cap space, the team thinks that they have solidified three starting positions, all on the offensive line.

The moves that most fans and media have lauded most of the additions of right guards Jamon Brown and James Carpenter. While both men certainly represent an upgrade in size, the numbers show that they did not play very well last season. In fact Ryan Schraeder, Wes Schweitzer, Brandon Fusco and Ben Garland all graded higher than Carpenter and Brown according to Pro Football Focus.

I contend that the only true upgrade the Atlanta Falcons have made thus far, is at the position of backup tight end. Other than that, the team saw some veterans go and a few be resigned, mostly for depth. The offensive side of the ball seems to be the early focus. The team resigned right tackle Ty Sambrailo to a 3 year deal worth 14.25 million dollars. The deal is incentive laden and seems to indicate that Sambrailo will be given every opportunity to win the starting job, after taking over for Ryan Schraeder to end the season. Backup quarterback Matt Schaub was also resigned at a reduced rate. He agreed to a two-year deal worth 3.78 million  He previously made about 4.5 million per year to back up Matt Ryan.