Falcons to workout LBs Akeem Dent, Mike Mohamed

Southern California's running back Marc Tyler shakes off California linebacker Michael Mohamed for a touchdown as the Trojans romped to 48-14 win in October 2010. (Chris Carlson/Associated Press)

Southern California's running back Marc Tyler shakes off California linebacker Michael Mohamed for a touchdown as the Trojans romped to 48-14 win in October 2010. (Chris Carlson/Associated Press)

BIRDLAND — With the NFL draft a little over a month away,  one thing is starting to come into focus.

The Falcons are going to take a linebacker in the draft.

Not with the 27th pick mind you. But likely in the third or fourth round, they’ll be pulling a linebacker tag off the board.

Georgia’s Akeem Dent, who had a great Pro Day on Tuesday in Athens, came away with a private workout invite from the Falcons for April 14.

Also, by the time I drove back, I had an e-mail denoting that California linebacker Mike Mohamed told the NFL Draft Bible that he has a workout with the Falcons set for April 8.

Athens, GA:  UGA linebacker Akeem Dent runs a drill for NFL scouts uring UGA's Pro Day March 22, 2011.  Brant Sanderlin  bsanderlin@ajc.com

Athens, GA: UGA linebacker Akeem Dent runs a drill for NFL scouts uring UGA's Pro Day March 22, 2011. Brant Sanderlin bsanderlin@ajc.com

The word in the agent community is that the personnel staff and coaches have disbanded across the country.

“Man, your boys, the Falcons, they are everywhere,” an agent said unsolicited on Tuesday at Georgia’s Pro Day.

Dent and Mohamed fit the Falcons profile of productive four-year players. Both also have their degrees. That was a common theme during the last draft as the team touted the players high “Football Intelligence” or “FBI” as they called it.

Dent, who redshirted in 2006 after coming out of Douglass High, started all 13 games last season and had a team-best 126 tackles, including 6.5 for loss and 2.5 sacks. He also forced and recovered two fumbles. He graduated in December with a degree in housing.

Mohamed, 6-foot-3 and 239 pounds,  played in 50 of 51 games and made 26 starts for Cal. He received his bachelor’s degree from Cal in Business Administration in December of 2010, finishing with a 3.44 cumulative GPA.

He runs a 4.65 in the 40-yard dash and has a 32-inch vertical. He can also tip his helmet to Falcons safety Thomas DeCoud, a Cal product who’s considered an ascending star at free safety.

I did some YouTube.com scouting on him. Check out this highlight reel. He made a lot of plays at Cal.  He looks pretty fast, but I don’t see the violence and explosion in his tackling. He’s awesome in coverage and had a big pick to secure a victory over Stanford in 2009.

Getting another linebacker makes sense because Stephen Nicholas, depending on the outcome of the labor situation, could be an unrestricted free agent. Also, Mike Peterson is a two-down run stuffer.

Here’s what coach Mike Smith said about the linebacker group in our exclusive interview at the combine.

Smith said: “We still have depth within that group. Because of the different packages that you see on defense, there are going to be more guys that are specialized. Mike Peterson was our base defender against the run, and Sean [Weatherspoon] ended up playing in our [nickel] package. I thought that when Sean was out, that Stephen Nicholas did a very good job of fitting into that role.

“We have some young guys that have been contributing on special teams, in Spencer Adkins and Robert James. There is going to be a great opportunity this offseason for them to show what they can do.”

–D. Orlando Ledbetter, The Atlanta Falcons beat blog

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30 comments Add your comment

FEAR THE TALON

March 23rd, 2011
5:36 am

FFFFFIIIIRRRRSSSSTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!!

FEAR THE TALON

March 23rd, 2011
5:37 am

IN SMITTY WE TRUST!!!

devildawg

March 23rd, 2011
7:24 am

So, the only pic you could find of Muhamed is where he got beat for a TD and is laying on the ground. That sure makes me want him on the Falcons. Cmon, for a minute, i thought I was supposed to be looking at the Southern Cal guy.

Rickster

March 23rd, 2011
7:35 am

Why do I get the distinct impression that the author of this story has some sort of ties to U(sic)GA! Between the photo, stats listed and the verbiage, there seems to be an obvious lean towards touting this Dent fellow. Just sayin’……. With that being said, I’m sure that TD, CMS and their crew will select the best player available at this position without any biased slant toward any one player, as all “professionals” in any area(s) do!!! GO FALCONS!!!!!

Infamous

March 23rd, 2011
8:11 am

Way to instill confidence with that first pic. #NotAGoodLook

Old Flatulent Dawg

March 23rd, 2011
8:14 am

DOL…you’re right about the Mohamed kid, he’s making plays, but he not blasting people to bits….as for Rickster…what are you some insecure Techie, give it a rest will you or else hang out in the college blogs

LOL

March 23rd, 2011
8:15 am

Hey Rickster, shut up and just read the fricken article. Nobody gives a crap about your whining.

McNasty

March 23rd, 2011
8:21 am

Mohameds’ highlights look like he has good instincts and adequate speed. However he looks a little light and could get run over on short or goal line situations. He could be a keeper if he could gain 20#s and keep the speed & agility. What are Dents measurables?

hirsutedawg

March 23rd, 2011
8:38 am

Akeem Dent will make plays on Sunday just like the plethora of other players who come out of Athens. My questions is why can’t we stop the Kentucky’s & Vandy’s of the world from running up and down the field on Saturdays?

d_costa

March 23rd, 2011
9:53 am

I don’t know exactly where the bias comment comes from? It seems to me that Mr. DOL was merely quoting some scouts who felt Akeem had a very good Pro Day. Right now isn’t the time for jealousy or hurt feelings from years past, you can save that for the regular season. I wish all of these kids luck as they try to make it to the next level.

Mr. Phil

March 23rd, 2011
9:59 am

Seems to me you are trying to make a statement with the picture of Mohamed getting run over. Is that the best way to introduce us to the kid?

coachx

March 23rd, 2011
10:30 am

I like hearing that the Falcons scouts are all over the place. They really do their homework when it comes to the draft.

Dent is huge. I see him as MLB………..all I can see him doing for Atlanta is backing up Lofton but you never kow when a starter will break an ankle or blow out a knee.

The Cali kid sounds intrigueing. He sounds like a sideline to sideline OLB like Weatherspoon. Neither are thumpers like Dent though.

D Money

March 23rd, 2011
10:47 am

These guys are not 3rd or 4th round guys. They’re more of the undrafted free agents caliber. If we’re going to get a linebacker, get one that’s going to make a difference and who’s not scared to drop the hammer on somebody.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

March 23rd, 2011
10:49 am

Phil – Um, no. But is was the best Associated Press picture I could find. I did put his highlight reel in here.

richie

March 23rd, 2011
11:00 am

Watched dent the last four years at uga he can get after it. a tackle machine

Sid

March 23rd, 2011
12:44 pm

Darrell, I am laughing so hard. That poor white boy eatin all that dirt……!! It’s a Freudian slip ….lol…!! Just kidding D Led, just kiddin’!!

[...] The Falcons will work out Georgia inside linebacker Akeem Dent according to the AJC. [...]

Sid

March 23rd, 2011
12:53 pm

“He looks pretty fast, but I don’t see the violence and explosion in his tackling.”

Darrell, this is the new NFL standard for the defense, he’ll fit right in.

JB

March 23rd, 2011
10:18 pm

In other words, after 2-3 years, Spencer Adkins and Robert James are busts.

Veedub

March 24th, 2011
10:42 am

@DOL… Im with Phil and devildawg on this one. I was looking at the SC guy at first till I read the caption. I found better pics when I just googled the guy.. COME ON MAN!!!!!!!

c white

March 24th, 2011
2:34 pm

dent is a good football a player he always have been will be in the nfl

Facethenation

March 24th, 2011
6:12 pm

Akeem, Akeem the tackling machine, hell yes, if he is still available in the later rounds.

Duck tape and glue

March 24th, 2011
11:00 pm

I don’t understand what is not to like about the Mohamed video. He tackles fast guys in space and doesn’t whiff on wide open sacks. Could’ve used some of that against the Packers.

We Need PLAYMAKERS

March 25th, 2011
7:17 am

He has good instincts watching the video; but like someone said he is a little light for a LB. Looks more like a good FS to me.

JohnGTFan

March 25th, 2011
7:18 am

Any chance the Falcons can get them both? Or not possible? I’m just not blown away by Robert James or Stephen Nicholas. I’d like to see both these kids get drafted and get a shot with some playing time. I UNFORTUNATELY saw Akeem against GT every year…he can play for my favortite NFL team anyday!!! I like the Mohamed video…kid has talent. I know there are more pressing needs, but just can’t have too many good linebackers IMO.

Really?

March 25th, 2011
10:10 am

Is it really a degree if it is in “Housing”?

DrJ

March 25th, 2011
5:16 pm

@Playmakers: the guy has an eye for the ball, go for Free Safety!

bama52

March 26th, 2011
8:14 pm

What about the Falcons start building a shut down defense,draft Cameron Hayward from Ohio State or whoever is the best defensive linemen available at our pick.We need a shut down defense that can harass a QB on all passing situations,stop the run and give our offense good field position. Build an awesome defense and you win championships.

True Falcon Fan

March 29th, 2011
3:00 pm

Please someone tell me where I am missing the talent in Akeem Dent & Michael Mohamed. My point is “WHY” would the Falcons consider these two, for picking at anytime during rounds 1 & 2?? These really may end up FA’s. Folks don’t misunderstand in the past UGA has put out some good talent in the past, but “NOT GREAT” talent. UGA, just ain’t that good at recruiting the 4-5 years. Also if they keep losing they will be looking for new coach sooner than later!

Go Falcons!!!

D. Orlando Ledbetter

March 29th, 2011
5:06 pm

True Falcon Fan — I think they are both third or fourth round possibilities.