Fans get all excited about compensatory picks, but since 2007 the Falcons haven’t exactly hit the jackpot with the extra picks.
There have been some starters picked like the recently released Thomas DeCoud, some solid picks like running back Jason Snelling and some busts like Kansas wide receiver Kerry Meier.
Here’s a look at the Falcons five best compensatory picks by the Falcons in recent history:
1. JASON SNELLING, RB: He was drafted by the Falcons in the seventh round (244th overall ) of the 2007 NFL Draft. Serving mostly a reserve role and as a spot starter, Snelling accumulated 1,420 rushing yards and eight touchdowns in seven seasons before retiring this offseason.
2. THOMAS DeCOUD, FS: He ascended to a starting role and made the Pro Bowl in 2012 as an alternate. His play tackling and ball skills diminished miserably last season. He was a third-round pick in 2008 (98th overall). DeCoud played primarily on special teams in 10 games as a rookie. DeCoud started at free safety the following season and was a fixture of the Falcons' defense, starting 78 games before being released.
3. LEVINE TOILOLO, TE: He had 11 catches for 55 yards and 2 touchdowns in 9 games (2 starts) of his rookie season with the Falcons. The Falcons drafted the tight end out of Stanford in the fourth round (133rd pick overall) of the 2013 NFL Draft.
4. MIKE JOHNSON, OL: He was a third-round selection in 2010 (98th overall pick). He played in two games in 2011, spending most of the season on injured reserve. He played 16 games in 2012 as a backup tackle and a blocking tight end. He’d won the starting right tackle spot before being injured last season.
5. ZEKE MOTTA, FS/SS: He started one game before being placed on injured reserve before the final regular-season game against Carolina. Motta had surgery to repair a fracture of the C1 verterbrae in his neck. Motta suffered the injury during Atlanta’s 27-26 victory over the Redskins on Dec. 15. Smith said the recovery time for Motta’s injury was 4-6 weeks.
OTHER RECENT COMPENSATORY PICKS
-- Tight end Martrez Milner was taken in the fourth round (133rd overall) in 2007. He spent one season with the team before being released on Sept. 16, 2008.
-- Wide receiver Kerry Meier was selected in the fifth round in 2010 (165th overall). He spent the 2010 season on injury reserve. Meier appeared in 12 games in 2011 without recording a reception. The Falcons cut Meier prior to the 2012 season.
-- Defensive tackle Travian Robertson was selected in the seventh round (249th overall) by the Atlanta Falcons in 2012. Robertson has played in 12 games, primarily as a backup, over the last two season and has recorded 4 tackles.
-- Free safety Kemal Ishmael was selected in the seventh round (243rd overall) by the Falcons in 2013. Ishmael was inactive for most of the season. He played in four games and made one special-teams tackle.
-- Quarterback Sean Renfree was selected in the seventh round (249th overall) by the Falcons in 2013. He suffered a season-ending injury in the Falcons exhibition season finale and spent the season on injured reserve.
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