The Falcons have been slow and extremely deliberate in free agency. By contrast, last season they were swift and decisive in adding running back Michael Turner, safety Erik Coleman and the rest of the group.
Peterson has played weakside and middle linebacker. He comes “cross-trained.” He was also a former captain in Jacksonville before falling out with head coach Jack Del Rio last season.
But Falcons coach Mike Smith never had any issues with Peterson. Word coming out of Flowery Branch is that their bond is still pretty tight and that allowed the deal to get done so quickly.
Despite his falling out with Del Rio, Peterson still led the Jags in tackles with 84. He missed six starts after Del Rio misinterpreted Peterson’s attempt to fire up the team as a selfish celebratory move. It was also the last year of Peterson’s contract and well, he thought he should have been extended.
But all that is in his rear view mirror.
Peterson steps into a unit that needs some direction and playmakers. Peterson and Stephen Nicholas can go at it for the weakside spot. If Peterson wins, then Nicholas could slide over to strongside and possibly play on passing downs if he can’t beat out Coy Wire. Wire started on running downs late last season for Boley.
Now, if something happens to Curtis Lofton, Peterson can also play the middle.
Romberg, 29, has started 18 games over the last three seasons. He started his career in Jacksonville after playing at Miami.
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