FLOWERY BRANCH – Ohio State safety Vonn Bell, a former AJC Super 11 player from Ridgeland High, is considered the top safety prospect in the NFL draft, which is set for Thursday through Saturday in Chicago.
Could he be the Falcons' answer to their long-standing issue of covering tight ends?
It seems like tight ends have been open on the Falcons since San Francisco's Vernon Davis and Delanie Walker were roaming free in the NFC championship game up through last season's torching by the veteran Ben Watson in New Orleans.
Bell was heavily scouted by the Falcons, who released starting safety William Moore this offseason.
“Fiery guy, showed passion and energy, want to be a spark on the team, a play-maker,” Bell said when asked to describe his style of play.
The Falcons are looking to create more turnovers.
“I make plays all over the field, they can watch film … always had a knack for the ball,” Bell said.
But can he cover? Bell is confident that he can cover tight ends in the NFL. Moore was released, in part, because the team was not comfortable with his coverage skills.
“Just play up to them,” Bell said. “I’ve been playing against great tight ends all my years at Ohio State, Jeff Heuerman and Nick (Vannett) and those type of guys, very physical. Just have fun, you’re out there for a reason, show them why you’re there."
Teams in need: Atlanta, Carolina, Houston, Detroit, Minnesota and Oakland.
Need area for Falcons? Yes. The Falcons released former starting strong safety William Moore over the offseason. They've scouted several linebackers that they believe can move back to safety. They are looking for a player who can help in run support, tackle in space and not get beat in coverage.
The AJC’s D. Orlando Ledbetter gives his top players for the Falcons to draft at #17, talks about the interest in LB Myles Jack & tells CineSport’s Noah Coslov where the team may go in round 2.
NFL DRAFT 2016 – POSITION BY POSITION SERIES
Sunday, April 17 -- QUARTERBACKS
Monday -- RUNNING BACKS
Tuesday - WIDE RECEIVERS
Wednesday -- TIGHT ENDS
Thursday -- OFFENSIVE LINEMEN
Friday -- DEFENSIVE LINEMEN
Saturday, April 23 -- LINEBACKERS
Sunday, April 24 -- CORNERBACKS
Monday, April 25 -- SAFETIES
Tuesday, April 26
D. Led’s breakdown of the Specialists, kickers, punters and returners
Position by position: Specialists chart
Wednesday, April 27
Final mock draft