The Atlanta Falcons are perhaps the most intriguing team heading into the upcoming NFL Draft. They appear to be the first team that might not take a quarterback, though it’s far from a certainty. According to ESPN’s Chris Mortensen, that uncertainty stems from a divide between general manager Terry Fontenot and head coach Arthur Smith over whether or not the team should move on from Matt Ryan.
“What I’m hearing is that Fontenot is more focused on quarterback, and Arthur Smith believes that Matt Ryan does have two or more years left,” Mortensen explained.
Ryan is 35, and while he may not have played at an MVP level last season, he still was solid under center, passing for over 4,500 yards and 26 touchdowns. Fontenot and others likely believe that the team reached its ceiling with Ryan and that the best thing to do is begin a new era.
The Falcons are reportedly talking to teams about trading back, indicating that they may not be looking to take a quarterback in the draft and instead want to focus on improving the roster. Mortensen says that if the team does stay at No. 4 and decides to take a rookie quarterback, however, it’s most likely to be Trey Lance.