Top 5 special teamers

Player                        Ht                   Wt                 School          Proj. Rd

1. Joe Adams             5-10                   179                Arkansas                 3rd/4th

Comment: He led the NCAA with four punt returns for touchdowns in 2011.

2. T.Y. Hilton             5-9                  183             Florida International   4th/5th

Comment: He has run the 40-yard dash in 4.34 seconds and had six returns for touchdowns in his college career. The best combination kickoff and punt returner in the draft.

3. Drew Butler           6-1                 203               Georgia          5th/6th

Comment: Won the Ray Guy award, which goes to the nation’s top punter, after leading the nation with a 48.1 yard average after the 2009 season. Averaged 44.5 yards per punt last season.

4. Brian Anger            6-3                 208                California          6th/7th

Comment: He averaged 43.1 yards on 71 career punts.

5. Blair Walsh            5-9                  187                 Georgia         6th/7th

Comment: Has the big leg, but struggled with accuracy (21 of 35) on his field goal attempts last season.

Falcons need:The Falcons are set at punter with Matt Bosher and will try to get another solid year out of Matt Bryant, who turns 37 in May. A gaping hole on the special teams units was left with the departure of Eric Weems in free agency. The former Pro Bowler was the team’s top punt and kickoff returner for the past three seasons.

Others in need: Rams (6), Panthers (9), Cowboys (14), Texans (26), Ravens (29) and 49ers (30).

Comment:“T.Y. Hilton is the top returner. [Mark] Rogers from Cal-Poly is an excellent returner. Joe Adams is a phenomenal punt returner out of Arkansas. Some of the things he did were highlight-film material. . .Anger at Cal, I have as the top punter. Butler is the second highest rated punter. Shawn Powell of Florida State is third rated punter. . .I have Walsh as the third highest rated kicker. You have to look at the inconsistencies this year. He went from being a draftable guy to being an undrafted free agent. I think he’ll have a chance to compete for a job.”

Mel Kiper, ESPN draft analyst who has been publishing the Mel Kiper Jr. Draft Report for 34 years.

9 comments Add your comment

The Truth

April 18th, 2012
3:49 pm

The Truth

April 18th, 2012
3:52 pm

Thanks D. Led…. Couldn’t hurt to take a flyer on TY Hilton, but only as a late round pick. Our only hope is maybe getting a two-way player like a Brandon Boykins or even Joe Adams. Where is Chris Rainey on this list?

Bird Dawg Country

April 18th, 2012
4:14 pm

If Blair Walsh doesn’t get drafted, I’d like to see Falcons sign him as a free agent.
He’s getting drafted though, according to Mel, I believe.
Good kid that can prove last year was an abberation.

Bird Dawg Country

April 18th, 2012
4:17 pm

Would also like to see Brandon Boykin in Falcons uniform.
Don’t know, with the few Atlanta draft picks, which order their personnel priorities lie.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

April 18th, 2012
4:40 pm

Mel just told me on today’s conference call that Walsh would not get drafted.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

April 18th, 2012
4:41 pm

The Truth – Chris who? His name was only getting mentioned if you asked about him over the last two months.

JSS

April 18th, 2012
4:50 pm

This SEC fixation gets tiring. Ledbetter, you always miss mentioning that Weems was a demon on coverages… Are they really starting to think post Bryant?

[...] Top 5 Special teamers [...]

Falcon Fanatic

April 18th, 2012
11:10 pm

T.Y. Hilton is the best player on that list. Top returner and best receiver, you can’t teach speed.