Here’s what it would take for Falcons to get A.J. Green

An NFL rule prevented scouts from watching A.J. Green's workout because the quarterback throwing to him, Justin Roper, lives too far from Athens. Brant Sanderlin, bsanderlin@ajc.com

An NFL rule prevented scouts from watching A.J. Green's workout because the quarterback throwing to him, Justin Roper, lives too far from Athens. Brant Sanderlin, bsanderlin@ajc.com

BIRDLAND — My esteemed and most humble colleague, AJC columnist Jeff Schultz, has forwarded an interesting proposition to the Atlanta Falcons’ front office.

With the offense is need of creating more explosive plays, in his column today, he is directing them to pull out the stops to get Georgia wide receiver A.J. Green.

Director of player personnel Les Snead, director of college scouting David Palmer and assistant area scout Anthony Robinson attended Georgia’s Pro Day for the Falcons. But they had to leave because quarterback Justin Roper, who’s from Buford, was determined to live 6.2 miles outside of the radius of the Athens metroplex.

They had the option of watching the workout on the Internet.

Former Georgia wide receiver A.J. Green with his agents Tom Condon (L) and Ben Dogra (R).   (D. Orlando Ledbetter/DLedbetter@ajc.com)

Former Georgia wide receiver A.J. Green with his agents Tom Condon (L) and Ben Dogra (R). (D. Orlando Ledbetter/DLedbetter@ajc.com)

General manager Thomas Dimitroff, the two-time Sporting News executive of the year, has been a busy bee in his three drafts with the Falcons.

In 2008, he traded back into the first round to get offensive tackle Sam Baker with the 21st overall pick after selecting quarterback Matt Ryan third overall. Washington traded its first-, third-, and fifth-round selections (No. 21, 84, and 154) to the Falcons for two of Atlanta’s second-round selections and its fourth-round selection (No. 34, 48, and 103).

The 84th pick turned into wide receiver Harry Douglas. The 154th pick became defensive end Kroy Biermann.

In 2009, the Falcons traded with St. Louis, which gave up its fifth- and sixth-round selections (138th and 176th overall, respectively) to Atlanta in exchange for wide receiver Laurent Robinson and Atlanta’s fifth- and sixth-round selections (160th and 196th overall, respectively).

They 138th pick was used on cornerback William Middleton, who is now with Jacksonville. They selected linebacker Spencer Adkins with the 176th pick.

In 2010, the Falcons acquired St. Louis’ fifth round selection (135th overall) in exchange for selections in the fifth (149th overall) and sixth round (189th overall). The Falcons had also acquired Detroit’s sixth round pick, and a conditional seventh round pick for the 2011 draft in the Chris Houston trade.

They moved up to the 135th pick to select cornerback Dominique Franks. They selected safety Shann Schillinger with the 171st pick.

For the upcoming draft, the Cincinnati Bengals (fourth overall) and the Cleveland Browns (sixth) are considered strong possibilities for Green. Carolina, which has the No. 1 overall pick, is likely going defense or quarterback. Denver (second) and Buffalo (third) are not heavily scouting receivers. Arizona, in need of a quarterback, is picking fifth.

So if Green gets past Cincinnati, the Falcons will be on the phone with Mike Holmgren and the Cleveland Browns.

The Browns, who may want to amass picks, traded out of the No. 5 spot in 2009.  Under a different regime, they sent the No. 5 pick to the New York Jets (Mark Sanchez) for the 17the pick, a second rounder and three players that were coveted by their former coach Eric Mangini.

Green wouldn’t come cheaply. The Falcons, since players can’t be traded because of the labor situation, would have to yield their No. 1 and No. 2 this year and likely their No. 2 for next year.

Green played 32 games at Georgia, made 166 catches and 2,619 yards and scored 23 touchdowns.

NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock directs those wanting to evaluate Green to look at the tape of Georgia’s game against Colorado.

So under this scenario, would you pull the trigger to land A.J. Green?

–D. Orlando Ledbetter, The Atlanta Falcons beat blog

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272 comments Add your comment

dz

March 23rd, 2011
10:54 am

Thought Carolina had the 1st overall pick?

dz

March 23rd, 2011
10:54 am

North Ave Trade School Hater

March 23rd, 2011
10:55 am

Much as I love him, no

Difference makers don't come cheap

March 23rd, 2011
10:55 am

uh ….yeah !

richie

March 23rd, 2011
10:55 am

Poppa Falcon

March 23rd, 2011
10:56 am

INCREDIBLE talent; but may just take toooooo much to get him.

the teacher

March 23rd, 2011
11:01 am

No!!! Incredilble talent but dumd as rocks… Check wonderlic score and selling of jersey for $1000. I am not sure AJ played a full college season between injuries and suspensions… This is not the kind of player the Falcons need.

coachx

March 23rd, 2011
11:01 am

Good theory but no team can trade next years picks according to Mayock and Kipper. I tend to believe them of over guys like Schultz. Do yourself a favor and ignore Schultzy. He is nothing more then a shock jock in print.

All we have to deal are picks in this years draft.

It ain’t happening any way. The Falcons have more holes to plug then 1.

Best DE available at #27 – Kerrigan, Houston, or Snead. I don’t like Clayborn. His lack of production (only 3/5 sacks) scares me away from him.

In the 2nd round hope that one of Cobb or Jernigan falls to us. They would both be dynamite out of the slot and either one gets plenty of YAC.

Calvinist

March 23rd, 2011
11:01 am

I’d rather trade all that for Calvin Johnson.

gabeaux

March 23rd, 2011
11:02 am

ain’t worth it. too many other things to fix or improve..

HGN

March 23rd, 2011
11:05 am

ABSOLUTELY NOT…………….The Falcons have far too many holes ( DL ; OL ; DB ; RB ) to fill to trade for A.J. Green. This is a bad trade and Atlanta needs its picks to fill other needs.

Banned

March 23rd, 2011
11:09 am

groundfog

March 23rd, 2011
11:10 am

Not a chance in heck the Falcons even try to go after Green. This is just a wasted blog.

BOB

March 23rd, 2011
11:12 am

First,trade Jenkins to the Bengels who need a vet wide out to go with their new QB/ rookie wide out. This should net at least a second round pick. In order of need-assuming no major FE signings outside of our own- draft DE; RB then WO with the first three picks. With only 3-4 of the team’s 15 FEs slated to return, there will be room to get younger and ,hopefully,better.

Supes

March 23rd, 2011
11:14 am

If all it’s going to cost is this year’s 1st and 2nd round pick and next year’s 1st (likely to be in the high 20’s again – hopefully) then it’s worth it.

A talent like A.J. Green doesn’t come very often…he would be an excellent WR opposite Roddy White.

However…since it won’t happen we can always dream of getting Larry Fitzgerald from the Cards…Matt Ryan already “requested it” after the way he bailed him out in the pro bowl just snatching the long TD pass.

BOB

March 23rd, 2011
11:14 am

In the 3rd round, a DB over 6 ‘ who can cover and hit!

SOUTH GA DAWG FAN

March 23rd, 2011
11:21 am

two picks yes three picks no no.
but i don’t think the falcons would even consider this trade could they maybe get jones for a little less

Stirg d'Nahsif

March 23rd, 2011
11:21 am

Willy

March 23rd, 2011
11:22 am

A 1 and two 2’s might be what it takes but we need too much help in other areas (DE, OL, backup RB) to trade three for one.

Die Hard Falcon

March 23rd, 2011
11:24 am

Definitely not! I would very much love to get Green, but too pricey, we certainly have other needs, now in my mind it would make much more sense to trade w/ Detroit at 13th and jump ahead of the Rams and take Julio Jones, if we can jump that by only trading away our 27th pick and a 3rd and something later, not sure that is even remotely possible as I don’t know the draft point trade system. I would however feel much better about Jones at 13 then Green at 6. I like the idea of trading all of what it would take to get Green for Calvin Johnson as the Calvinist pointed out, but really I think we do have more needs and we’ll need our picks. Would be sweet though.

do it

March 23rd, 2011
11:27 am

PMC

March 23rd, 2011
11:30 am

No. They have too many holes to make that pick and lose that many players.

They would be better off going after Sidney Rice or Plaxico Burress etc in FA.

They already have Roddy White, yes they need a compliment. Trading essentially 3 starters for a compliment WR is not a formula for success… sounds like something Dallas would do.

PMC

March 23rd, 2011
11:31 am

Also they can’t trade past this draft year without some sort of agreement anyway.

sunshine falcon

March 23rd, 2011
11:32 am

I agree that if the Falcons are going to give up that much for a receiver, then it should be Calvin Johnson.
I don’t care what that egomaniac Mayock has to say, though.

PMC

March 23rd, 2011
11:32 am

I’m far more concerned that they cannot cover underneath routes from the OLB position and they can’t get any pressure with any defensive end not named Abraham.

dobearsbare

March 23rd, 2011
11:57 am

That’s the equivalent of the Viking giving all those picks to the Cowboys for Herschel Walker. The Vikings paid for that deal in spades. The Cowboys won multiple Super Bowls. And Walker was a proven pro by that point. Green’s not. No way it’d be worth it.

Steve

March 23rd, 2011
12:01 pm

If you’re going to trade a bunch of draft picks for a WR, use them to get a guy like Larry Fitzgerald, who would likely be less expensive, than a rookie WR.

As great as AJ Green was in college (and he was great), there’s no way you trade three picks (two of which are 2s) for a rookie WR. Certainly, they could get Fitzgerald for less than that right now, and I suspect they wouldn’t need to trade a 1 to get him. If you’re going to make a move at WR, THAT’S the move you make.

Delbert D.

March 23rd, 2011
12:03 pm

No. Wide receiver is not the Falcons’ biggest need.

just me

March 23rd, 2011
12:04 pm

I think there are a number of other WRs that will be just as productive as Green in the NFL. If he were to fall to 27th I would be all over him, but for the cost it is not worth trading up! I would trade up to pick OLB Von Miller though! But, only if the price is right. I think Dontay Moch has simular OLB skills and can be had in the 3rd, he is not as quick with his lateral movement.

Elliot Garcia

March 23rd, 2011
12:09 pm

The biggest hole the Falcons have is WR opposite of 84…..

matt

March 23rd, 2011
12:13 pm

No. Would love to have him but the Falcons have other holes to fill. Durham clocked a 4.4 didn’t he? He’s sure handed and a good route runner. Seems like getting him late would make more sense.

indianman

March 23rd, 2011
12:14 pm

in a heat beat

indianman

March 23rd, 2011
12:15 pm

in a heart beat

JohnGT Fan

March 23rd, 2011
12:17 pm

I said it on Schultz blog, and I’ll say it again here…If you’re going to give up that much, you better be doing it for Fitzgerald or Calvin Johnson. Green is a special talent and I think he’ll be really good, but I’d only give up that much for a PROVEN player, and a class act. Not saying he’s not, but you already know what you’re getting from the other two players. I’m just glad that it’s Dimitroff making the decisions, and not Jeff Schultz.

Tom

March 23rd, 2011
12:20 pm

What would it take to get AJ?

Based on that Wonderlic, I’m guessing a couple of big words and some pretty colors.

Jeffro Bodeen

March 23rd, 2011
12:26 pm

Be smart….do what you can to get Kris Durham!!

Big Picture

March 23rd, 2011
12:27 pm

We need an offensive line that can take us in from the 1 yd line. How many times did we stall in the red zone last year because of our inability to make plays in short yardage situations. Also, our defense was a little too unreliable. We often gave up points on broken defensive plays, and some teams just picked us apart with the short passes. We need to beef up the O line and Defense before we spend that kind of capital on a receiver, no matter how good he is.

MisterT

March 23rd, 2011
12:27 pm

No way do we trade a #1 & 2 #2’s for Green.

Minnesota Dawg

March 23rd, 2011
12:28 pm

Just so they don’t have to do what Minnesota did to get Hershel Walker!!

ctfalconsfan

March 23rd, 2011
12:29 pm

NO WAY!!!!!!!!!!!

To give up 1 and 2 and maybe a 2 next year?? That’s 3 potential starters that we need NOW versus 1 outstanding WR.

We can get a solid WR with our 1st or 2nd pick this year plus get a DE that we need with the other pick

Bluestreak

March 23rd, 2011
12:29 pm

I would love to have AJ on the other side of White, but not at that cost. I agree with sending the same for Calvin Johnson. The difference is a proven NFL receiver versus a very good college receiver that hasn’t proven anything in the NFL.

GTBob

March 23rd, 2011
12:30 pm

Trading two 1st round picks and a 2nd round pick for a position that you don’t even need would go down as one of the dumbest draft deals of all time, regardless of how good AJ ends up being.

Big O

March 23rd, 2011
12:30 pm

NO! Defense! DE, LB, CB, Safety

clay

March 23rd, 2011
12:34 pm

Whatever TD and MS do I trust them. Every falcon fan should do the same as well. They have proven they can be trusted on how they want to put this team together. IN TD WE TRUST

GT97

March 23rd, 2011
12:35 pm

What the HE double toothpicks are you AJC columnists suggesting. That is the type of trade that sends franchises into the toilet, or keeps them in the toilet. Has New England under their current regime ever made such a trade? No. That is all that you have to ask yourself.

Sid

March 23rd, 2011
12:36 pm

I been saying all along they might trade up but it won’t be used on Green.

BigDawg

March 23rd, 2011
12:38 pm

Fact is he is simply just not worth that amount of damage!!! Sure a few more of us Dawg fans may buy tickets but that would be a one year trend and the harm it would do to a team with other “GREATER” needs is obvious. Why should the Falcons take someone at such a high cost simply because they played for us? Cut the umbilical and let him grow up with some other team. His upside is not as good as the Tech receiver from a couple of years ago and there is a good chance he becomes a bust. See his wonderlic for an idea of his intellectual/logical thinking ability. He’ll be hooked on drugs or broke in no time.

mgdawg

March 23rd, 2011
12:45 pm

If the falcons could get AJ for this year’s first round and second round, and next year’s second round, I say go for it. There is no doubt in my mind that this guy is going to be a star in the nfl, and considering that it wouldn’t be too much to give up those draft picks. The falcons do have more holes, but hopefully the owners and the players will reach a decision and the falcons would be able to improve in free agency in those other spots with football players that you know a lot better.

Mr. Phil

March 23rd, 2011
12:50 pm

@BigDawg Wow that was harsh. And you are a Dawg fan?

I think the answer to this question is whether or not the Falcons can get defensive help through means other than the draft. I believe that answer is yes.

Any defensive line help that comes through the draft will need to be seasoned. I think the birds need that help immediately and should step out of their mold (just this once) to get defensive help. I think if they make a move like this it will be because they are fairly confident they will a) get a free agent db and b)get a replacement starting DE through free agency. If those things are probable, go ahead and bag a future star in Green.

Charles

March 23rd, 2011
12:56 pm

2 words, HADES NO!!! Too steep of a price for what we need and there are number of possibilities that should be available in the 2nd round and a couple of potential sleeper FA’s.