Will Brent Grimes Seize the Cornerback Spot?

Can #20 Prove He’s a Legit Starter?

 Brent Grimes represents a common story we know very well: a tough but undersized player from a small school works hard, refuses to give up, plays well, and works his way up to be an excellent and consistent starter in the pros. Grimes has the entire story down pat except for the very end. Can the tough as nails, but vertically challenged cornerback permanently take the starting spot opposite Dunta Robinson for the Atlanta Falcons? Grimes has a somewhat mixed bag of success as an NFL player, even though the track record is short after being in the NFL for three years. It’s a well known fact that Grimes is the pound-for-pound most athletic player on the team, at least according to Head Coach Mike Smith. Grimes quickness, speed, jumping ability, and high motor led a team high 6 interceptions and tied for 3rd in the entire NFL for most interceptions and he only started 8 games. In fact, only Charles Woodson and Asante Samuel had more INTs (9) and Grimes even tied the best cornerback in the NFL, Darrelle Revis, in terms of picks.

Although Grimes has one of the highest motors on the team and obviously has a nose for the ball, many fans believe that he simply is too short to compete on the highest level in the age of the extremely tall wide receiver a la Randy Moss, Marques Colston, and Brandon Marshall to name just a few. Grimes critics claim that he’s simply to short to perform on the highest level of the NFL and has performed pretty poorly overall, constantly getting beat on intermediate and deep routes alike. They will quickly point to both 2008 and 2009, where Grimes was unable to hang on to the starter position bestowed upon him. The Falcons CB got the hook in 2008 after the first 6 games in lieu of Domonique Foxworth and the pass defense improved. Foxworth also used the opportunity to parlay his good season into a high contract with the Baltimore Ravens. Grimes had another chance in 2009 where he got the starting nod once again after the bye, and once again was unable to hold the position. These fans may believe that Grimes is a solid corner that can play a part in the rotation, but not necessarily a starting cornerback. #20 did regain the starting CB spot again in the last four games and, along with Christopher Owens, helped the Birds go 3 and 1 in the final four stretch to end the curse of never having back-to-back winning seasons. So let the debate rage…….Can Brent Grimes finally put a lock on a starting cornerback spot?

Brent Grimes by the Numbers

Snaps – 718

Overall Comprehensive CB Ranking – 76th (-6.5 Rating)

Pass Coverage Rank – 75th (-3.1 Rating)

Run Defense Rank – 58th (+0.1 Rating)

Penalties – 84th (-4.5 Rating)

QB Pressures – 26th (1 Pressure)

Tackles – 19th (57)

Missed Tackles – 100th (10)

Defensive Stops – 37th (14)

Catch Percentage – 61st (62.4 – % of passes caught in their coverage)

Pass Yards Given Up – 90th (685 yards)

Yards Per Catch – 50th (11.8 yards per catch)

Yards After Catch – 89th (255 yards)

Longest Pass Given Up – 61 yards

TDs Given Up – Tied for 33rd (2 TDs)

Interceptions – Tied for 3rd (6 INTs)

Passes Defensed – Tied for 47th (6)

Opposing QB Rating – 16th (65.0 QB Rating)

Great Games – New York Jets, Tampa Bay Bucs (2nd), Chicago

Awful Games – New Orleans (2nd), New York Giants, Dallas Cowboys

***Special Thanks to ProFootballFocus.com for the excellent stat work. Please check them out.*** Link for All Cornerback Ranks and link for Brent Grimes Individual Rank

Grimes Time to Shine

The Falcons cornerback is finally ready to lock down the open cornerback spot….permanently. Grimes has had his rough patches for sure and has learned the hard way, but there doesn’t exist another Falcons player with a higher motor, tenacity, and effort level. Perhaps the cornerback from tiny Shippensburg College wasn’t ready for the starting nod in 2008, but he appears to have learned form his mistakes. He ranked 3rd in the ENTIRE NFL in terms of interceptions after starting only 8 games. Yes, he’s not the tallest cornerback in the NFL, but he’s the same height as the Falcons own Christopher Owens, Antoine Winfield, and is only 1 inch shorter than Dunta Robinson who the Falcons just paid megabucks to be their number 1 cornerback.

Some of the ranks and stats aren’t pretty (pure pass coverage, yards after catch, total pass yards given up), but some of that can be attributed to the fact that the defensive line offered little to no pass rush and the entire linebacker corps could muster only 4 total sacks. Even the best cornerbacks can only hold for so long without a good pass rush. Besides interceptions, Grimes ranks fairly high in several categories including tackles and QB pressures and TDs given up, but the biggest one to look at is his extremely high rank in terms of holding the opposing QB to a low quarterback rating (ranked 16th in NFL). It will be a huge battle between Grimes and Owens for the open CB spot, and Grimes will definitely be a lock for the nickel back position, but good money says that learning the ropes in the line of fire and understanding his past mistakes will prove this is the year Grimes takes a hold of the cornerback position on a permanent basis.

Nickel Back, Maybe. Starter, No!

Grimes does have a place in the Falcons secondary, perhaps even as the nickel back, but he is not starter worthy in the NFL. He is extremely athletic, a hard worker, and tough as nails, but he simply just doesn’t have it to be a #2 corner in the NFL, at least for the Birds. He has had several opportunities to show that he is capable of doing what’s needed to keep wide receivers to a minimum. True shutdown corners just don’t come along that often, but Grimes often struggles to be a complementary cornerback and handle the opposing team’s number 2 receiver.

His height is not a big a deal as some make it, but he definitely has issues going up against taller and bigger receivers (Muhsin Muhammed two years ago?). Assuming Chris Houston was matched up on Steve Smith of the Giants this year, then Grimes was torched by Mario Manningham for 126 yards. Grimes may can play another position, but when he runs up against a talented receiving corps, he just can’t deliver. When #20 ran up against a talented receiving corps as a starter, he had a very bad pass coverage outing (Giants, Saints, Cowboys). He ranked in the very bottom half in terms of yards given up (90th), yards after catch (89th), and penalties (84th). Surely, all wasn’t his fault with a weak pass rush, but Grimes has a very difficult time lining up as a starter and locking down a receiver one-on-one. This doesn’t exonerate the other CBs either, but Chris Owens was a true rookie and gets a little more of a pass than does Grimes in his third year. Maybe Grimes can find a perfect fit at nickel because he has to be considered among the top 3 cornerbacks, but he had ample opportunities to prove he is a starter and failed.

The Judge’s Turn (You)

-Is Brent Grimes starter worthy in the NFL?

-Will Grimes seize the open CB spot opposite Dunta Robinson?

-Can #20 be a legit cornerback for the Falcons?

-Is Grimes destined for nickel or dime back?

-Has the Falcons CB had enough chances?

-Is #20 too short to be a starter?

 

 

Check Out Our Falcons Friend

The Falcoholic Takes a Look at Position Gets Injured Most?

Troy Examines Lawrence Sidbury Jr. Over at Blogging Dirty

Daniel Cox Has a Cool Story on “The Sodfather” at AtlantaFalcon.com

FalcFans Has a Neat Way of Looking at Falcons Strengths and Weaknesses

 

 

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219 comments Add your comment

Unca' Bob

July 7th, 2010
1:28 pm

Enter your comments here

dbird1

July 7th, 2010
1:30 pm

I love this lil guy. but a starter no.

SeminoleWarrior

July 7th, 2010
1:43 pm

D3, I have been awaiting this one for some time. Brent Grimes is one of my favorites. He is a true player, never quits, has a deep drive to improve, and is always around the football. He is beaten by bigger receivers but never quits on the play. His intangibles are special. The guy is a keeper.

I think he is a legit player at the nickel position. His speed and range are a great asset there. He is also a quality backup to Chris Owen on the right side. It is there where we saw Brent really take off and establish his presence on the field. But Owens is also a force on the right side. I see a tandem that reflects Robinson and Franks on the left with Owens and Grimes on the right. Jackson, Grimes, and Franks give us great depth at the CB position as well as considerably better coverage sets.

Blue Fender

July 7th, 2010
1:43 pm

He could be a #2 corner if he could beef up a bit. He has decent instincts, but he gets out-muscled from time to time.

SeminoleWarrior

July 7th, 2010
1:50 pm

He provides critical depth at the position, is a very good special teamer, and he is team first oriented. He is a keeper.

Sgt. Pepper

July 7th, 2010
1:50 pm

Grimes is a very athletic player and can be used in the nickel slot. Put Dunta and B. Williams on either side and on 3rd and long, drop him in to break up a pass or get an int. I give him an A for effort, but not yet a starter. Both Grimes and Owens will have a nice battle for the number three in the event someone else gets hurt.

With a revamped pass rush and linebacker group, I say the secondary will look like studs this year.

Eric

July 7th, 2010
1:50 pm

The last guy I saw who was short like Grimes and played cornerback was Darryl Green, and he is a Hall of Famer. Height will not keep Grimes from playing. He has the skills and the intangibles, but he has to learn to keep balance when jamming receivers. My prediction is that Brent Grimes will start.

SeminoleWarrior

July 7th, 2010
1:53 pm

Eric, I look for an intense battle on the right side between Owens and Grimes. We are lucky to have them both. But I am going to give the edge to Owens with Grimes being the primary nickel back.

Keep an eye on Franks and the re-born Chevis Jackson. Where we weak last year, this year, I see some improving strength.

Moose

July 7th, 2010
1:53 pm

@ SW……. Your so right about the depth that we have now at that position, Do’t forget about Jackson……………..

Rank em…….

1. Dunta Robinson

2. Chris Owens

3. Brent Grimes

4. Chevis Jackson

5. Brian Williams (injury)

6. Dominique Franks (Rookie but will play ST most of this year)

SeminoleWarrior

July 7th, 2010
1:55 pm

Thanks Moose…

I agree 100% with your rankings of the CB depth. Robinson and Owens will open the season as our starters.

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Moose

July 7th, 2010
1:58 pm

LOL SW…….. there’s Jackson…….. This line up looks killer compaired to last year with th advancement of Owens and Grims…..

Eric

July 7th, 2010
2:02 pm

I’ll still give the edge to Grimes, but you’re right in the fact that we have more depth in the secondary. If our pass rush improves up the middle,our secondary will have an easier time doing their job.

SeminoleWarrior

July 7th, 2010
2:06 pm

Moose, it is definately an improvement in all facets if you ask me. An upgraded LB corps will help with the pass rush until we settle things out at the DT tackle position. Imagine Spoon and Nicholas being turned loose on the blitz. And throw in a little Moore and DeCoud as well.

Damn…I’m loving it.

SeminoleWarrior

July 7th, 2010
2:07 pm

Again, it is going to be a hell of a battle, Eric. Neither Owens or Grimes will go gently into that good night.

Eric

July 7th, 2010
2:11 pm

I look forward to the battle in training camp too. It sure beats the days of having guys with no talent battle it out. May the Falcons never see those days again

Sgt. Pepper

July 7th, 2010
2:11 pm

Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t Grimy finish the season on the left side, taking over for Houston? I remember him doing much better on that side. Owens seemed to excel on the right side.

Either way, we do have great depth on either side in the event that Williams is too hurt to return to original form.

Birdman

July 7th, 2010
2:16 pm

Good eve cage

I like Grimes he shows a lot of grit and enjoyment in playing . I think he can get better with time .

Check this out on the No 1 TE in the NFL going into this year .
http://bleacherreport.com/tb/b4Q4d

Doves

July 7th, 2010
2:25 pm

If Brian Williams is healthy he starts opposite Dunta.

Bangkapi Ajarn

July 7th, 2010
2:29 pm

D3, Nice one.

I really love how each blog brings the stats. Forums such as this are by their very nature subjective, but you DO bring in the objectivity of facts and stats, which I love (understanding Disraeli’s classic observation on the veracity of statistical analysis on occasion). Thanks!!!!!!! If I ever make it down there, I owe you a beverage of your choice just for the enjoyment you provide.

Now, on to the D3 Brett Grimes quiz (soon to be included in accredited PSAT tests, as well as culturally appropriate TOEFL tests as a 4th variable and wonderlic tests for 2011 grads aspiring to be NFL’er’s).

-Is Brent Grimes starter worthy in the NFL?
I fear His starter opportunities will be limited to filling in for injured or hobbled team mates in this upgraded defence- but he WILL have significant snaps regardless of who starts, he has the heart of a NFL player (much like Spud Webb became an NBA star). He is good enough to start for some teams, but the Falcons are building a championship caliber D, and such a team NEEDS quality, driven, talented ball hogs such as Grimes.

-Will Grimes seize the open CB spot opposite Dunta Robinson?
Nope, but starter status isn’t that crucial in the syetem that is developing – he will get his snaps, he will get his int’s, and yes, he will on occasion get burned.

-Can #20 be a legit cornerback for the Falcons?
Yes, unquestionably. The top QB/receiver combos will victimize ALL CB’s more or less, including Grimes, Robinson, you name it. But, for all the times that he (or any) DB gets burned, he will recover for the tackle and even make spectacular plays enough to make his presence a valuable asset. Every DB will get burned on occasion, but NOT every DB will will be tied for third in the league for INT’s (with 6) playing in a rotation.

-Is Grimes destined for nickel or dime back?
I see him as smart, versatile, motivated, and contributing in multiple roles.

-Has the Falcons CB had enough chances?
Yes, but I say that in the belief that he has earned a spot in the rotation.

-Is #20 too short to be a starter?
In this system,I think he will play. The starter designation won’t mean as much in the situational rotation that seems to be on the horizon. Grimes, as much as anyone, will benefit fro the hurried, inaccurate throws that will be forced by a more aggressive pass rush, the dude is a ball hog. Just not as the starter unless needs force him to take extra snaps.

uga_b

July 7th, 2010
2:32 pm

I still think Owens beats him out but for the most part it is a coinflip. Corner size really only matters based on what kind of coverages you run. If you do a lot of bump and run, man to man, you need jammers with good recovery speed. For Grimes, he does better off-the-line man-to-man but this opens us swing passes. Steve Smith anyone? I like taller corners for zone and in the red zone. We don’t need to be letting people into the red zones for jump balls anyway. Safety can help there too.

Since the rule changes, smaller quicker corners are back in style. Grimes needs a little more consistency, line help, safety help, and stop listening to the height hype.

SeminoleWarrior

July 7th, 2010
2:33 pm

Pep, Grimes settled into a comfort zone on the right side. Owens took over duties at LCB. Both grew as the season ran its course over the last four games. Invaluable experience gained.

Birdman, as long as he is healthy and playing, TG88 is the best at the position. I can not wait until he catches his 1000th career reception. Sad part about it will be that it will not be in ATL; most likely will be in Pittsburgh for the opener. Holding out hope for a roll up there but I hear that tickets are murder to get in the Steel City…

Kushion

July 7th, 2010
2:40 pm

Don’t sleep on Chevis Jackson. I liked the article in AF.com on Jackson going back to basics. Over the last couple of years AF.com seems to post an article about a guy who ends up breaking into the starting lineup (Nicholas, Decoud) Coach did say he wanted to see what his third year players have. Grimes and Owens are nickel corners IMO but nickel corners get alot of playing time in the league these days. Don’t see Williams being ready to go he got hurt around week 6. It takes about a year to get back to 100% from the type of injury he has. (ACL) His age does not make it any easier either and he probably won’t even be able to compete for the #2 spot during camp/preseason. Franks is the future at the #2 spot IMO. One thing is for certain it will be a nice battle to watch.

Moose

July 7th, 2010
2:50 pm

Owens is shorter than Grimes but I still think he beats him out………

20 Brent Grimes 26 5-10 181
22 Chevis Jackson 24 5-11 191
21 Chris Owens 23 5-9 179
23 Dunta Robinson 28 5-10 184
29 Brian Williams 31 5-11 202

ATLJBO

July 7th, 2010
2:52 pm

I think Grimes can start if we have a good D-Line…..

I would rather have Chris Owens starting tho…. He is more physical….

Grimes has great ball skills but on early downs…. He can easily give up 7 yards on 1st down…Thats why i would start Owens on 1st and 2nd downs….. Put Grimes on the island on 3rd downs and move Owens to the NB position.

I think Owens can start but im trying to think of a way we can use Grimes for his strengths.

Regardless… Dunta , Owens, Grimes will play….. I think we can have a good DB group if our D-Line plays good.

TMoney

July 7th, 2010
2:53 pm

I liken an old phrase my high school coach used to say to used to say to Grimes, “It’s not the size of the dog in the fight but the size of the fight in the dog.”

Grimes is a fighter and definitely has the potential to be a starter. It’s gonna be a fun battle to see where he, Williams, Owens & Jackson fall.

Moose

July 7th, 2010
2:55 pm

Kushion, I agree that Jackson may well play up to his potential and could be the #2 guy… Yes we do have a good looking battle this year for that spot for a change…….. TG……

ATLJBO

July 7th, 2010
3:01 pm

Moose

I gave up on the height thing…

The texans had Dunta listed as 5′11 but we have him as 5′10

at the combine Decoud mesured in at almost 6′2 but we had him listed as 6′0

I know Owens is 5′9 6./8

Ive talked to some that has been around Grimes and they say no way is dude 5′10

The height thing really dont matter… I like Owens because he plays like a 6′0 CB (physical and aggressive…

Moose

July 7th, 2010
3:07 pm

ATLJBO. LOL me too……… Owens would be my pick right now but we got aways to go……….

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LRD

July 7th, 2010
3:37 pm

Grimes a starter is a maybe.. I hope he wins the spot as he has quickly become a favorite in this household. . .. very quick on the ball, and then he has a great nose for the ball. Which in turn makes one wonder which of his talents is more dominant..speed or nose for the ball. If it is nose for the ball, then put him in the nickel and keep on special teams where speed this compliments his nose for the ball. . If it is speed alone he will continue probably to be a #2 corner as his height against taller WR’s means quick slants with the ball up where only the WR can get to it.. quick 5 yd gains that would just lead to frustration on Grimes part and then making him want to gamble leading to a large gain or worse a TD.. Just think of lob/timing patterns into the corner of the endzone where height is key to either catching or knocking down the ball. just my 02.. mileage may vary.

LRD

July 7th, 2010
3:40 pm

Eric: as an x-Skins fan.. Loved Green! Great talent on the field, always smiling, always doing work in the community and just always seemed as not just a great player but more importantly as a great human being.

Ken Strickland

July 7th, 2010
6:31 pm

BGrimes didn’t struggle as a CB, he struggled as a left CB. The exploded and became a serious play maker as a right CB after replacing injured CHouston on the right side last yr. Whether he wins the starting nod will depend on how and where Smitty decides to play DRobinson. If he decides to play him at left CB, BGrimes wins the battle hands down.

While this is an interesting topic, if we get the pass rush we need, it won’t matter much who wins the battle, since all of the competitors are quality CB’s.

Sporkdevil

July 7th, 2010
6:53 pm

I think it’s crazy that we give some 2nd round corner 3 years of un-interrupted starting showing no ball skills or improvement, and some UDFA who has gotten spot duty the past 2.5 years is out of chances. Grimes may be best as a nickel, but can still improve as a starting corner. Let’s see how he plays when we have a pass rush and he has a quality player across from him in Dunta Robinson.

Even if his coverage skills at times are not the best, if he can be a turnover machine like Asante Samuel (god willing), it would be something we haven’t had on this D for a long time. We need a guy who can get us 5 picks or more a year. He will have a legit shot to start this year, and if he shows up, I think he has earned the opportunity to start across from Robinson. If he falters, then we may put in Williams. Which brings us to another problem, and that is that we don’t have a CB who should be certainly starting above Grimes. Williams, coming off injury, is good, but that’s all he is. I believe his injury is coming along slowly as well. Owens is still young, and I would hate to ruin his confidence by forcing him into starting before he is ready. He should get spot duty, but not sure if he is starter worthy.

Unca' Bob

July 7th, 2010
8:26 pm

I can not for the life of me understand why being six foot tall makes one a football player. This kid has been nothing but a football player since the time he arrived. I seem to recall an interception in NO last year, where it looked to me, he bumped his head on the rafters…Just a thought.

marcus

July 7th, 2010
8:57 pm

grimes would of had seven if it wasn’t for that lame call last year and i wasn’t a fan of grimes myself but he did look a lot better on the right side at times like a lock down corner i guess they just had to put him in the right place to make plays

D3

July 7th, 2010
9:12 pm

Great Evening Cage! — Hope everyone’s summer is going well so far. Stay cool, enjoy the season, because Falcons Training Camp is only 23 days away (but no one’s counting, right?)

dbird1 — Ultimately I think Christopher Owens will win the job, but I won’t be surprised one bit if Grimes takes the nod.

Blue Fender — Yeah I’ve seen him get dish-ragged a time or two, hopefully its just an issue of technique.

Sgt Pepper — Well put, but I’ll have to disagree a little on Brian Williams. Even though he was thought to have done better, he actually was ranked worse than Chris Houston last year according to ProFootballFocus.com. Also think his injury is too much at his age.

Eric — I think that’s a safe bet that he’ll start. I actually thought we would be OK with Chris Owens and Brent Grimes BOTH starting, even before we landed Dunta Robinson.

Seminole — Well said my brother. I agree. I think Owens takes the spot as well. I love our depth this year with
1) Dunta Robinson
2) Chris Owens
3) Brent Grimes
4) Chevis Jackson
5) Dominique Franks
Honestly, I think TD re-signed Brian Williams in an attempt to hedge his bets in case he couldn’t land Robinson or get a good CB in the draft. Actually Williams wasn’t that great last year as was and that’s not including a major knee injury at his age. Hard to imagine us carrying 6 cornerbacks in the roster when we have so many other needs in terms of depth, such as needing more DTs and more Safeties with our injury twins — Jerry and Moore.

D3

July 7th, 2010
9:30 pm

Moose — My order as well. I just flip-flopped Williams and Franks.

Eric — Good point. Our secondary got much better all on its own and our defensive line improvement (Jerry, Peters, Biermann, Sidbury Jr) will add that much more potentcy to our secondary….hopefully.

Birdman — I think Grimes will also get better over time as well. Question is, will he command starter money as a free agent if he doesn’t start in Atlanta?

BA — Thanks for the props my brother. I think Owens will win the job, but won’t be shocked at all if he wins it. In my college days I would say Newcastle or Guinness, but now that I’m a “grown-up” sad to say MGD 64 and Bud 55 are my choices. Did I just say that?

uga_b — Best line of the night on Grimes and Owens: its a coinflip. Goodness knows the “small” corners have been terrible for our college team, but then again they were coached by Soft Willie Martinez.

Kushion — Excellent point Chevis Jackson. I had high, high hopes for CJ#22 after his very good rookie year, but he took a little bit of a step back last year. That being said, he did finish above Chris Owens, Chevis Jackson, Brian Williams, and even Dunta Robinson last year according to ProFootballFocus.com, even though he saw very limited action.

ATLJBO — Well put. Robinson, Grimes, and Owens all will play and look to be solidly our top 3 corners, regardless of rank.

CBrass

July 7th, 2010
9:41 pm

D3,

As always great job. I think Grimes would be better suited for the nickel position. This is where his speed and athleticism would give him a great advantage. I think ATLJBO made a great point earlier. Owens will win out because he is more physical and plays the run extremely well. Just think back to the Bucs game and the way he laid wood to Williams couple of times. I love Grimes. His never die attitude is what won me over. Oh and he’s not 5′10. I met him at mini-camp he might be 5′9 and that’s a huge might!

Sarah B

July 7th, 2010
11:15 pm

I love Mighty Mouse’s enthusiam. Whether or not he starts, I just hope they keep him around. His sportsmanship is contagious.

Unca' Bob

July 8th, 2010
9:42 am

D3,

Having brought in the new Defensive Backs Coach, Tim Lewis, I think the CB spots are up for grabs. After reveiwing game tapes and now having seen the players in person,this will be to me the best position battle of the entire Camp.

SirReal

July 8th, 2010
10:14 am

Whats up everyone! Hope all is well with you all! Like SW, i was waiting on this one. At first I thought Grimes was no more than a nickel corner at best…HOWEVER over the last few games and when he got a chance to start, he got better. You dont get 6 picks without knowing what you’re doing. I dont care who the QB is. Where the Birds messed up was putting him on guys like Roy Williams or Muhsin Muhammed. Come on, thats just not even fair.lol We know who’ll win jump balls there. But no denying that he stuck with them. He wasnt burned much and was more solid to me than Chris Houston (who Im glad is GONE!)I think he has what it takes to take on No.2 receivers. He has a lot of upside. His height is his only thing but he makes up with it in so many other ways. With time and field experience, I think he could become one of the better CBs in the entire league.

eyesripdopen85

July 8th, 2010
10:20 am

i think BG20 can def start at the #2 spot. He might only be 5ft 9 at best lol. but he is a beast on the field where it counts. Our D line will really help out our corners this year as long as they all stay healthy. Lets not forget about TD28 he is also turning into a beast at FS and can provide the backup that BG20 needs to excel. IDK but i think we can make it deep in the playoffs this year GO FALCONS

Ken Strickland

July 8th, 2010
10:56 am

Over the last 2yrs we’ve gone from coming out of training camp making desperation trades to acquire a starting CB, to starting training camp with 2 very talented and capable young CB’s(COwens, BGrimes), and 1 vet(BWilliams)competing for 1 CB spot. And to this point, we can’t determine which one will start next to DRobinson? THAT IS A FAR BETTER SITUATION FOR US TO BE IN THAN THE PREVIOUS ONES. It also demonstrates the level of talent and depth we’ve accumulated @ CB.

When TD and Smitty decide to address a weakness, they haven’t just shown an ability to address that weakness, they’ve shown an amazing ability to turn that weakness into a strength. Remember just 2yrs ago when DE, DT, CB, SS, FS, MLB, OLB, OL, RB, QB, TE and our overall depth were weaknesses?

Man, the PROCESS is starting to cause me to have nocturnal emissions.

SeminoleWarrior

July 8th, 2010
11:15 am

Good morning Cage Fam…

Great convo about Mighty Mouse and his role with the team. He is definately an asset.

K Strick, easy over there brother. I love the Process as well but I don’t think it has taken me to that point yet….LOL.

D3, I feel you on the injury front. I think my man William Moore is ready at last. As far as Hip Hip goes, well, we will just have to wait and see. I pray so or we will be looking once again for a DT in next year’s draft or in FA.

UnCa Bob (Semper Fi, my friend), I definately agree with you on the off-season’s most important FA acquisition, Coach Tim Lewis. I saw his intensity at the mini camp. I have nothing but love for Coach Thomas and what the Hall of Famer achieved and did while in the ATL. But Lewis has a fire that is contagious. You will see it play out in the play of his defensive backs. Great point!!

D3, I am with you. I see Williams being released as we make the final cuts towards the 53 man roster. The remaining five CBs give us talent, youth, and flexibility.

Bangkapi Ajarn

July 8th, 2010
11:18 am

D3 – GREAT, succinct way to point out potential weaknesses for the Falcons –

“Hard to imagine us carrying 6 cornerbacks in the roster when we have so many other needs in terms of depth, such as needing more DTs and more Safeties with our injury twins — Jerry and Moore.” along with referring to B Williams (who completes the injury triplets). These injury issues could be the difference between strengths and weaknesses in these three crucial Defensive positions.

Williams is a Smitty guy from way back if I recollect correctly, so I suspect if he is mobile on opening day he will be on the roster, if not starting. It kinna defeats the purpose of getting younger, healthier, and faster as well as the drafting of Franks (roster spots??), but I wouldn’t be surprised. Disappointed perhaps, but not surprised.

It isn’t always about the best athlete or the best measurables, but who the coach thinks will best execute the game plan within the defensive scheme, and not make mistakes that cost the team. THIS could cost Grimes some snaps as much as anything, especially against teams that play no-huddle (restricting defensive substitution rotations).

SeminoleWarrior

July 8th, 2010
11:28 am

BA,

I would like to make the injury triplets, the Band-Aid Foursome. Adding LT Sam Baker to the mix. The health of Baker and Jerry this season are crucial to their long-term future with the Birds. We must see them on the field extensively and productively. Anything short of a full season is not good for either of them.

William Moore will be ready I feel. I just sensed his burning desire to get there during mini camp. The guy is a stud and these little nics and injuries must be over come. Once they are, look out!!
Brian Williams is a Smitty guy for sure. Like D3, given the need for depth at other positions, I can not see us carrying more than 5 CBs on the active roster. Robinson gives us the veteran presence now, Grimes and Owens gained valuable experience last season as starters, Jackson seems to be reborn, and Franks has value on special teams and in certain packages. I just see Williams as the odd man out. He filled a need for us last year before the injury and I know it is not fair for a man to lose his job to an injury. But I think, as you stated and most of us feel, what was once a weakness, cornerback play, has definately been upgraded.

Bangkapi Ajarn

July 8th, 2010
11:48 am

SW- Good point about Baker, but he DID play quite a few snaps as I recall (without looking it up)- not at a high level, but at least he got onto the field and played hurt.

I agree totally that he needs to show he can be a starting left tackle in the NFL, time to step up or make way for a high draft pick next year, but he DID contribute much more than Jerry, Moore and Williams.

Hoping you are right about Moore, maybe the MMA training will pay off for him, Baker, and the others!!

Back to the re-certification.

SeminoleWarrior

July 8th, 2010
12:03 pm

BA, yes he did play a significant number of snaps. But he needs to show the consistency that is key at the critical left tackle position. If he shows that, then there is no issue. If he is injured yet again, then depth at the position and long-term viability must be assessed.

Jerry had only one tackle in two games so I still am looking to see what he can do. And I definately want Moore on the field. 23 days and the wait is over….

CBrass

July 8th, 2010
1:12 pm