BIRDLAND – Ohio State defensive end Cameron Heyward, who played at Whitefield Academy and Peachtree Ridge High, could be available when the Falcons pick in the first round of the NFL draft.
ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper believes that Heyward is a better fit as a defensive end in a 3-4 defense. (He obviously hasn’t read my last Mock draft 4.0, where I have the Falcons taking Heyward to play in their 4-3.)
Kiper doesn’t believe that the Falcons will take Heyward because he doesn’t have superior pass rushing ability.
“They need somebody that can be a sack artist and be a guy that can get in that backfield,” Kiper said. “Cameron Heyward is a real good 3-4 defensive end. He could go to the New York Jets or the Green Bay Packers, those type of teams. He would fit the Pittsburgh Steelers, if they decide to get younger on the defensive line.”
The draft will be held April 28-30.
2011 NFL DRAFT ORDER FOR THE ATLANTA FALCONS
27. Atlanta Falcons (13-3)
59. Atlanta Falcons
91. Atlanta Falcons
124. Atlanta Falcons
158. Atlanta Falcons
192. Atlanta Falcons
209. Atlanta Falcons (from Detroit in the Chris Houston trade)
228. Atlanta Falcons
229. Atlanta Falcons (from New England in the Quinn Ojinnaka trade)
–D. Orlando Ledbetter, The Atlanta Falcons beat blog