What Role will Akeem Dent Play?

Will Dent Get a Look @ OLB? (J.Crawford/AJC)

The Akeem Dent pick was perhaps the biggest surprise outside of the trade up to get Julio Jones. After scouting so many linebackers, the fact that Curtis Lofton was coming off two knee surgeries, and also that the backup middle linebacker position has been a rotating door for the last three years, it was almost a certainty that the Birds would be grabbing a linebacker of some sort. The surprise was in who they got and when.

Many Bird Cage Family Members predicted that the Falcons would probably take a chance on Dent, but that it would be much later in the draft, perhaps somewhere around the 6th or even 7th round. Fans were shocked when the pick came in as Akeem Dent in the third round after giving up a 2nd rounder and a 4th rounder to get Jones. Dent had pretty good numbers, especially in terms of tackles, racking up 240 in his career (126 as a senior), 12.5 tackles for a loss (6.5 as a senior), 4.5 sacks (2.5 as a senior), and 5 pass break-ups. Those numbers are pretty good considering that he played under a very poor defensive coordinator for his first three years and had to undergo a scheme change to the 3-4 and a position change going from OLB to ILB.

Great Pick or Reach?

While playing under Soft Willie Martinez, the defense was laid back and took a “bend-but-don’t-break” approach (sound familiar?) that included very little pressure, read-and-react, and very soft zone coverages. Was Dent’s lack of production a coaching/development issue or simply Dent’s lack of talent responsible himself? There are several Georgia players that have had little college production and gone on to pretty successful careers in the NFL, at least initially. This pick reminds many of the Corey Peters pick last year. Most everyone was also shocked by that pick in the 3rd round and it screamed of a reach. They also said that they had to pull the trigger on Peters because someone valued him as highly as they did. After most assumed it was simply a depth pick, Peters had a very productive year and beat out vets Peria Jerry, Trey Lewis, Vance Walker, and even Jamal Anderson for several starts. This pick looks and sounds very similar to the Peters pick. Expecting the same type of production and seeing Dent start probably won’t happen. Some believe it was a reach because linebackers such as Mike Mohamed, Quan Sturdivant, and Greg Jones were taken much later in the draft.

Special Teams/Depth or OLB Candidate?

Good Value or Reach? (B.Sanderlin/AJC)

The big question is how much will Dent contribute. The official company line from Dimitroff was that Dent would be a very big special teams player and an excellent backup for a banged up Lofton. That very well may be true, but its also hard to believe that we’re at a point where we can start drafting special teams players with 3rd round picks. Fixing special teams alone can have a cascade of improving areas. The biggest one would be to allow most starters like Kroy Biermann to focus on their starting roles only and not have to wear down at the end of games or at the end of the season. Biermann was very close on many potential sacks and maybe that extra energy and burst will help him close the deal. He even admitted as much in a recent interview. But is special teams contribution make a 3rd round pick worthy alone?

Some believe that he may get some looks at outside linebacker since he played it for most of his career and his measurables stack up pretty good with many OLB’s (6’1, 242, 4.73 forty). One of his big knocks is his coverage skills, so any chance at OLB would definitely take some time. He could be an eventual replacement for Stephen Nicholas if he seeks the open market in free agency, but likely not as a rookie. Mike Peterson appears that he will be coming back for at least another year and maybe Dent can learn the position under him. Curtis Lofton even commented that Dent may get some looks at OLB when he was asked about Dent

Since the data and research could go on for days, we’ll use the last 5 years of linebackers drafted in the 3rd round, their rookie stats, and what they’re doing or what they’ve done since being in the NFL.

3rd Round Linebackers Rookie Production

G – Games Played; GS – Games Started; TKL – tackles; PD – Passes Defensed; FF – Forced Fumbles

2006

Abdul Hodge – 8 G – 1 GS – 8 tkl – 2 PD – Eternal Backup

Chris Gocong* – 16 G – 12 GS – 66 tkl – 1 sack – 1 PD – Currently Fulltime Starter

Anthony Schlegel – 4 G – 1 tkl – Out of League within 2 years

Jon Alston – 3 G – 0 GS – 1 tkl – Free Agent

Clint Ingram – 14 G – 11 GS – 71 tkl – 1.5 sack – 2 PD – 1 Int – Free Agent

James Anderson – 16 G – 2 GS – 21 tkl – 2 sacks – 2 PD – 2 FF – Fulltime Starter

Freddie Keiaho – 14 G – 0 GS – 19 tkl – 2 FF – Free Agent

Gerris Wilkinson – 16 GS – 2 GS – 27 tkl – 1 PD – Free Agent

2007

Buster Davis – 1 G – No Stats – Out of League within 2 Years

Quincy Black – 15 G – 8 tkl – 2 FF – Started 23 Games in Last 2 Years

Stewart Bradley – 16 G – 1 GS – 8 tkl – 1 sack – 1 PD – 1 Int – Started 28 Games Last 2 Years

Anthony Waters* – 7 G – 3 tkl – No Starts Since in the NFL

2008

Tavares Gooden – 4 G – 5 tkl – 12 Starts in 3 Years, None in 2010

Dan Connor – 3 G – 4 tkl – 8 Starts in 3 Years

Shawn Crable – 6 G – 4 tkl – ½ sack – 6 Games Played in 3 Years

Phillip Wheeler – 16 G – 14 tkl – 13 Starts in 3 Years

2009

Jason Williams – 5 G – 3 tkl – 2 Games Started in 2 Years

Deandre Levy – 14 G – 10 GS – 85 tkl – 5 PD – 1 Int – 1 FF – 21 Starts in 2 Years

Tyrone McKenzie – 3 G – No Stats – Cut as a Rookie

2010

Donald Butler – No Stats as a Rookie

Navorro Bowman – 16 G – 1 GS – 46 tkl

Rennie Curran – 9 G – 7 tkl

*Represents first full year of playing. Rookie year cut due to injury

Observations

-The forecast doesn’t look too good as having immediate production

-Also doesn’t bode well for 3rd rd LB’s to become eventual starters

-Special teams contributor seems the best role for Dent

-7 players (31%) were either cut as a rookie, not in the league, or have no team

-Only 3 (14%) have developed into full-time starters

-A whopping 13 players (59%) had less than 10 tackles as a rookie

-Only 3 players (14%) started more than 2 games as a rookie.

-Only 1 player (Anderson) considered to be performing at a high level (130 tackles)

Special Teams Star? (B.Sanderlin/AJC)

Well, Dimitroff and others look to be exactly right in what Dent’s role will be. Special teams all-star would be considered good based on the last 5 years of drafting linebackers in the 3rd round. Granted, there obviously have been success stories with picking linebackers in the later rounds and the Falcons could very well have a future starter in Akeem Dent. Stephen Nicholas is pretty much considered to be a starting OLB in the NFL now and he was chosen in the 4th round. That, however, is the exception and no where near the rule. In the last five years, only Stewart Bradley and James Anderson could be considered pretty highly productive as starters. Dimitroff and Smith likely know their expectations when they took Dent and it appears that his role will be mainly on special teams and backing up Lofton for the immediate future. Any hope for eventual success would be wonderful, but it would take time.

Your Turn to Assess Akeem Dent

  1. What do you think of the Dent pick overall?
  2. Good value or reach?
  3. Will Dent be relegated to special teams only and backup?
  4. Any chance that Dent could be a long-term answer at OLB?
  5. What kind of production would make you happy as a rookie?
  6. Will Dent be Anthony Schlegel, Quincy Black, or James Anderson?
  7. Should fans expect high production from ANY 3rd round picks?
  8. Was there someone you’d rather had in 3rd round?

145 comments Add your comment

Unca' Bob

May 19th, 2011
12:05 pm

Enter your comments here

JB FALCON

May 19th, 2011
12:13 pm

Looking at what other players have done is not, to me, a good indication to what any particular player may or may not do. Dent seems to have the qualities the TD looks for as far as football knowledge and attitude. With the proper coaching and opportunities, I can see Dent being an asset to special teams immediately and who knows about the future? He’ll be here for a while so we might as well develope his skills to the max.

Dent's Role

May 19th, 2011
12:41 pm

Will be opposing team’s ego booster should he take the field.

Tha Real Falcon

May 19th, 2011
1:00 pm

He is too slow for OLB and two small for ILB because he gets caught in the trash.
Super reach!

Tha Real Falcon

May 19th, 2011
1:02 pm

I thought the question was was the 3rd round a reach?
Not if he can be developed into a player.

uga_b

May 19th, 2011
1:25 pm

What do you think of the Dent pick overall?
I like it because it fills a need with a player that fits our culture.

Good value or reach?
Reaches are when ALL 31 other teams wouldn’t take that player there.

Will Dent be relegated to special teams only and backup?
Hopefully, because otherwise someone is injured.

Any chance that Dent could be a long-term answer at OLB?
Always a chance. See him more as an ILB that can backup OLB.

What kind of production would make you happy as a rookie?
16 GP and solide special teamer.

Will Dent be Anthony Schlegel, Quincy Black, or James Anderson?
Coy Wire.

Should fans expect high production from ANY 3rd round picks?
Depends on position and how you define high. Should expect them to play but not start.

Was there someone you’d rather had in 3rd round?
Sure, but there wasn’t a better ILB fit for the Falcons left on the board.

Rikus

May 19th, 2011
2:06 pm

Look, Corey Peters surprised us all. You really couldn’t have predicted such a large contribution from him, last season. I’m going to take a wait-and-see approach with Dent.

I will remind you guys that our defense operates in two modes: base and nickel, and they split almost 50/50. Even if Dent never becomes an every-down starter, I can certainly see him “starting” in the base package sometime within the next couple of years.

QB/DB

May 19th, 2011
2:35 pm

The Falcons reached on this one he could have been had in the 5th or 6. Of course TD will give him every chance in the world to be a player so TD won’t look bad. I hope I’m wrong but lets all see how the career’s of Quan Sturdivant, and Greg Jones stack up with Dent. To me TD doesn’t do as well with late round picks as he does with early picks. The key to the Falcons season is what undrafted FA’s they get. They have time and there are some great ones out there-it is key as well as if they what FREE AGENTS they get and keep off their present roster. The Falcons can’t mess around, not with the SAINTS AND BUCS BREATHING DOWN THEIR NECK. Plus the age of Tony G. and Turner, they have to go for the gusto right now!

Fan

May 19th, 2011
2:53 pm

Dent will start and be very active too it is cut from the same corp of LB like Jesse Tugg

waynester

May 19th, 2011
3:36 pm

D3
Seems to me that you’ve already answered your own question in the final paragraph. We weren’t drafting him to be a starter right away, if ever. We need leadership guys on STs also–that’s why we retained Coy Wire. He’s not a starting LB but a role player, nevertheless. If he can give us a few snaps at LB, great– but we need him to be focused on STs and working on technique under some pro coaches. We ARE at the point where we can expend a 3rd on a ST player–and while I don’t believe Dent was out 1st choice in rd 3 ( I’m still guessing Mason Foster), I DO believe he was our 2nd and therefore, not a reach.
PS
I read an article that said Foster was really ticked off that NO passed on him and was looking to make them regret it…..

JB FALCON

May 19th, 2011
4:10 pm

Did some research on Dent and rather than a reach it appears we were lucky to get him. TD stated that he rejected an offer to trade down for two later picks. After the pick the same team called and stated that Dent was the player they were trading up for.

JB FALCON

May 19th, 2011
4:25 pm

JB FALCON

May 19th, 2011
5:18 pm

I know this is about Dent but a special friend sent me this link about MR12. It’s a great read if you have time.
http://www.profootballfocus.com/blog/2011/05/19/matt-ryan-better-than-you-think/

waynester

May 19th, 2011
6:17 pm

JB
Really got to hand it to you on that link–now, that was an eye-opening article. Those of us who are continually trying to convince all the nay-sayers that MR2 is the real deal should print these out and hand them to all the Vick lovers on here (not to mention the Aaron Rogers/Drew Brees boosters). Great info–thanks!

Unca' Bob

May 19th, 2011
7:20 pm

JB FALCON,

I have always been a fan of MR#2. After reading your link, I had no idea. Good stuff my friend. It seems to me we are on the cusp of something never seen before in Atlanta football. The addition of J Jones could be our vaulting point. Should the season ever start, I’m in love with our chances. Great link JB.

falcon21

May 19th, 2011
7:34 pm

Damn good read JB, thanks man!!!

Ken Strickland

May 19th, 2011
8:13 pm

We can speculate and complain all we want about why Dent was drafted in the 3rd rd, or what his roll will be, but it’s a certainty that TD and Smitty have the answers, and that’s good enough for me.

falcon21

May 19th, 2011
8:23 pm

Being a UGA fan I would like to say he will be a superstar and he very well may be. I think he will be great on SP teams and have a pretty good career at LB, I hope great. Was he a reach? Yeah, but if they really wanted Dent, they had to pull the trigger when they did.

Paddy O

May 19th, 2011
8:24 pm

that article buttressing my mid season comments about MR2 reminding me of Roger The Dodger Staubach. If you just watch the 1st NO game & Ravens game (and really both TB games), Ryan was a surgeon piecing together tattered drives. The drives were uneven primarily due to the play calling. I think that most of the folks here in the cage rightfully recognize that the offense was more efficient coming off the no huddle or muddle huddle, with Ryan calling his own plays. With another year to gel, I can only see our team excelling further – provided we keep a good O line in front of Matty Ice. Great article!

D3

May 19th, 2011
8:25 pm

Great Thursday Bird Cage Family! — Hope you’re enjoying the new post. I know its not the most sizzling topic we’ve ever had, but you can only squeeze so much out since this is not only the normal “Football Dead Zone,” but its way worse with no end in sight with the lockout. The two sides seem farther apart than they’ve ever been. Hoping for hope that nothing gets tarnished on this season.

JB — Good point. I like the Dent pick and I actually think he has a chance to develop into something more than just a backup, even though the stats the last few years don’t really bare that out.

Real Falcon — I understand where you’re coming from, but he was only 1/100th of a second slower than Akeem Ayers who was widely regarded as the 2nd best OLB in the draft class.

uga_b — Great points as always. Welcome back. Where ya’ been?

Rikus — Superb point on Corey Peters. That’s why I think that Dent may get some looks at OLB down the line. Peters started a ton as a rookie, and some really good production to boot.

Back a little later……..

Paddy O

May 19th, 2011
8:29 pm

IF he turns out about 80% of Tuggle, we have made an excellent pick.

JB FALCON

May 19th, 2011
8:50 pm

PO, Tuggle was an UDFA and was also one of the players Dent looked up to and wants to emulate.
It was a coincidence that Tuggle announced the pick. As Ken said, and I agree, have faith in TD & Co. I also see Matthews and the president as great picks. I sincerely think that, if the lock out ended the day before our first game, no practice, FA’s or anything, we will be a team to be reckoned with. It’s just gonna’ get better. As D3 said. “The Football Dead Zone” is hell and keeping my excitement controlled is not easy. We’ll get to Quizz, though not the impact JJ will have, but is already my 5′2″ wife’s favorite pick.

Mike

May 19th, 2011
9:45 pm

I think Dent was drafted to add depth to the LB core, and to me it was a New Enland type move where they draft in areas where they seem to be good but not great to force players to step up and compete for the starting role. I also agree that I was almost as shocked by the Dent pick as I was the Peters pick. I was definitely expecting a DE at that point. Last year when they picked Peters I was thinking D-end or WR. The Falcons however do not necessarily need a DE, but they do need a pass rusher (other than Abe, who was suprisingly productive in 2010).Maybe Dent was also brought in to solidify spec teams where the Falcons were horrible until bringing in starters to help.

uga_b

May 19th, 2011
9:50 pm

We got busy at work and didn’t have time to read through all the Jones posts. Did get to hear Chernoff break down your post on 680 though.

I do think we got our Number 1 WR choice, possibly our Number 1 ILB, and same with RB and P. So not bad. Waiting to see what we do at CB.

I am starting to hope the owners get their lockout and loose all the money that comes with it. Excited to see some UFL. Maybe MLB can take over all the franchises and make them sell. Just saw Jerry Jones bought the Cowboys for 150M and now it’s worth 1.8B. So I assume the players should get 60% of the 1.65B. You know, since the owners only get 40% of revenue as if that is the only thing that matters. Plus, most of them don’t have shorter life expectancies or crippling pain killer addictions. Although no one asked, here is my proposal. Setup an escrow account for the second 1B. Only use it for building and other investment expenses. Then share the revenue from that 50-50. The owners complain about all that but don’t want to share the future revenues! Disingenuous.

D3

May 19th, 2011
9:51 pm

Fan, QB/DB — Both great points and Welcome to the Cage!

uga_b

May 19th, 2011
9:55 pm

Mike, that was the main thing about the players we brought in. Jones is hard worker who will drive up the energy at practice. Dent will do the same. Good meeting room guys and will push everyone else. We are focused on improving our current team more than taking flyers on talent.

crabapplejoe

May 19th, 2011
10:01 pm

Dent is not very athletic and doesn’t have ideal size for an NFL OLB but he makes up for it with his high motor and blue collar/lunch pail attitude toward the game. Hopefully, he can make the team and help get Bierman off STs and make a few plays at OLB….3rd round was probably a stretch but at least we didn’t give up four draft choices for him….

[...] is a new Post at What Role will Akeem Dent Play? | Atlanta Falcons: Bird Cage. The Akeem Dent pick was perhaps the biggest surprise outside of the trade up to get Julio Jones. [...]

joe white

May 20th, 2011
8:41 am

I coached dent in little league,he is a stud we got a future pro bowler in the third round.

Ken Strickland

May 20th, 2011
9:43 am

LDE is the hardest of the 2 DE positions to play, especially when rushing the passer. Right handed QB’s have them directly in their sights and usually step into the pocket when the LDE gets close. I think KBiermann will improve overall after a yr under his belt as a starter, especially as a pass rusher.

We do need to sign a FA DE, but not necessarily because of KBiermann, but to hedge against DE JAbraham getting injuried, or having another off yr like he did yr before last. Also, look for us to sign another CB in FA. Last yr, we carried 6 CB’s, and we waved one, Brian Williams.

I don’t know anything about last yrs rookie CB Rafael Priest, so it’s almost a certainty we’ll have to sign another CB. I’ve read where it’s a possibility we might resign BWilliams. Our DEF is definitely going to get better. There are simply too many young, talented and developing players on DEF with prominant roles that will definitely get better with experience.

waynester

May 20th, 2011
10:36 am

Ken S
I think we’ll bring Williams back. He was fairly productive and knows our system, so he’d be a great stop-gap…..

blord

May 20th, 2011
12:04 pm

I was shocked when we drafted him where we did; howeve, it may be a smart pick for a few reasons.
1) He knows much of the system already such as the language because he played under WM at UGA who ran the same system BVG does. This is big because of the lockout. These rookies are going to be behind the 8 ball and will have to catch up quick. Dent has the potential to do this based upon system.
2) Loften had two minor knee procedures this summer. May not be a huge deal but if he goes down who is going to come in? ….Bear Woods. We needed a plan be and Dent might not be ideal but he is at least a solid plan B.
3) In the modern day NFL defenses are in the nichol a ton and therefore much of the time only two LBers are on the field. Point being MP is fine considering the role he will play and with the dent pick we can be spend money in FA on other postions of need (aka DE and corner)
4) As you mentioned, It can make Bierman better.

LRD

May 20th, 2011
1:00 pm

JB Falcon, thanks for link. great article. It may not change some peoples minds….friend of mine and another dude were talking about Ryan in a bar last night, and I was amazed how much I had to defend him against those 2. Both admitted he is just Good, but they are both unsure if he was great… I will send my friend this article. ( he is a Titans fan, so he even admitted he had not room to talk in regards to QB’[s)

Paddy O

May 20th, 2011
3:39 pm

when you consider our 3rd down conversion %, that is a measurement of “clutch” performance, and it also explains our lack of receiver YAC. If preseason happens, it will be very interesting how our O performs – last years preseason WAS a precursor to the first 3 games of 2010 (over 20% of the season).

Ken Strickland

May 20th, 2011
6:39 pm

When evaluating a player, one has to look at the evaluator as much as the one being evaluated. Does the evaluator focus primarily on his weaknesses, or his strengths. Does the evaluator look at his weaknesses and a deterent, or as something that can be corrected with time and coaching.

The difference in these 2 approaches to evaluating talent is often why some teams do very well drafting successful players in the lower rds, and some don’t. So when some fans come on here and make an exclusive issue of what they feel a player can’t do or hasn’t done, I ignore them.

The question is, can he learn and/or be taught to do those things that he doesn’t do well NOW? I think TD and Smitty made Dent their 3rd rd choice, not because of what some say or feel he can’t do, but based on their belief that he can be taught to do those things. He obviously has the physical and mental tools to get much better, and they know they have the coaching in place to make him into whatever he needs to be.

So, how he’ll be used as a rookie is not indicative of the role he’ll fill a yr or 2 from now.

Sportaree

May 20th, 2011
11:36 pm

I remember about this time on Fri. or Sat. nights Sarah B would ask ” Is anybody out there”?.

GT GRAD

May 21st, 2011
9:38 am

Phillip Wheeler has 13 starts with 136 tackles, 1 sack and 1 forced fumble in his first three years. He had no starts as a rookie; however, he has started 7 and 6 games the past two seasons. The stats you listed above make him sound like a chump, but he is probving to be a solid contributor for Indianapolis.

I have high expectations for Dent……..I also think he will end the season as a starter for the Falcons (OLB). Peterson is all but done as a player and Dent will be a better player than Nicholas. Lofton and Weatherspoon will be solid this season and Dent will eventually develop into a starter over Nicholas.

DePlane

May 21st, 2011
10:18 am

Unca’ Bob, thanks for the info on JJ’s posts about SarahB and what happened to her. That is so sad…this old tough guy broke down and boo hooed like a running faucet. Most of us didn’t know Sarah personally…I never met her, but she was a presence on this blog who always had great football knowledge and was a key part of the gang. She will be missed here, but more importantly it gives us all pause to reflect on our own mortality and realize how short and sweet life is. Love your loved ones like theres no tomorrow, because there may not be.

Rest easy on the gridiron in the sky SarahB.

Peace.

DePlane

May 21st, 2011
10:39 am

I have to admit I’d been away from the blog for months due to work consuming most of my life. I also met the sweetie of my dreams and we are getting married in October. Coming back to the blog and finding out about Sarah’s passing was a total shock. Sometimes when you become comfortable with your surroundings, i.e., the Cage, and the folks there, you just take for granted they will always be there. The outpouring of sympathy and friendship, love and support in Cage reminded me why I come here in the first place. It’s not just football that keeps me coming back…eventually. It’s the people, like Sarah and the old familiar feeling of being at home and reading everyones post. You don’t know them, but you know what they like about the Falcons and many other things they choose to share here. It’s a comfort zone during our season and during the long off season…we can always come here and have some positive dialogue, or just read what others have to say, about the team that brings us together.

DePlane

May 21st, 2011
10:41 am

Thanks to all the great bloggers that make this a special place to roost and root for the Falcons.

waynester

May 21st, 2011
10:48 am

This really is the best on-line community forum of ANY kind as far as I’m concerned. Thanks to AJC for providing the forum and then staying out of the way, and for the moderator keeping things cool. Great job D3….

Unca' Bob

May 21st, 2011
2:38 pm

DePlane and waynester,

Y’all are preaching to the choir so I’ll simply add an amen.

ATLJBO

May 21st, 2011
2:58 pm

Do i think we reached… Naw… Alot of experts and scouts had Dent as a 2nd/3rd round pick.. Some experts said they thought he was going to be gone before our pick… The guy had a good proday and an outstanding east west shrine week

Article about his impressive week

http://www.nfl.com/news/story/09000d5d81dd18db/article/georgias-dent-usfs-mcclain-shine-during-shrine-week

The problem is….He is a MLB to me… if we are going to play him as a run stopping SLB on run downs/backup MLB… I get that.. The thing he brings also is great ST ability… Adding him may gave Biermann the ability to just focus on DE …

He is not a coverage guy… Can he become better in coverage.. Yea maybe but he wasnt brought here for that… He is a 2 down LB and a ST ace.

I understand if some dont like the pick… I dont think we reached… I just wonder what position he will play because he is really a MLB… I know one of the main reasons we got him is because of his ST ability.

This draft was kind of weak in alot of areas and LB was one of them

Ken Strickland

May 21st, 2011
3:43 pm

DEPLANE-Welcome back. I’m so sorry you have to come back and experience the loss that all of us experienced with the loss of our beloved SARAH B. While you, like most of us, didn’t get to know her on a purely personal level, you certainly got to know her on a spiritual level, because that’s how she came through on these blogs, and she came through LOUD AND CLEAR, and all of us felt it.

Like I’ve said before, there’s an old African saying that says, A PERSON DIES ONLY WHEN THEY ARE NO LONGER REMEMBERED. Therefore, as long as I’m able to frequent these blogs, she’ll continue to live on in spirit. She and her demise has made me so much more appreciative, since I’ve managed to cheat death twice. I’ve survived a serious stroke, and most recently I’ve survived prostate cancer.

In fact, I’m still in recovery from the prostate cancer surgery I had April 25th of this yr. I don’t know if I could have felt any closer to her if I’d actually had the pleasure of meeting her in person. No matter what happens from this point on, we cannot forget what bonded SARAH B and all of the rest of us, and that was our love of football, especially the ATLANTA “DIRTY BIRD” FALCONS.

HERE’S TO THE SARAHB SPIRIT THAT STILL PATROLS THESE BLOGS!!!!

DePlane

May 21st, 2011
4:13 pm

Amen Ken! And glad to hear you are on the mend. Sounds like you’ve been through quite a lot yourself my friend. Ditto on Sarah’s spirit! Keep us posted on your progress…we’ll be rooting for you.

Unca' Bob

May 21st, 2011
6:08 pm

I guess I’m still here. It must be I haven’t gone to heaven. No doubt we will miss most of y’all.

JB FALCON

May 21st, 2011
6:20 pm

DePlane, congratulations on your upcoming marriage. I met my little Falcon Fan over 30 years ago and she has made my life complete. She once made me drive to Chattanooga to watch a game that was blacked out! Of course, I wasn’t too hard to convince.
Ken, hang in there dude. You have a serious battle on your hands and I wish you all the luck in the world.
wayester, you are correct sir! This is truly the best blog on the internet and the BCFM’s are the greatest. If any two of us were in a crowd we would probably find each other when the Falcons were part of the discussion.

Ken Strickland

May 21st, 2011
6:45 pm

Thanks my fellow cagers. Don’t worry about me. My grandfather was one of the Braves biggest fans ever, and he missed them winning their 1st World Series. He also missed the election of the FIRST RECOGNIZED BLACK PRESIDENT IN US HISTORY. You can bet I’m not going anywhere until I witness the Falcons win their 1st Super Bowl.

crabapplejoe

May 21st, 2011
10:28 pm

@Ken Strickland who wrote: “He also missed the election of the FIRST RECOGNIZED BLACK PRESIDENT IN US HISTORY. You can bet I’m not going anywhere until I witness the Falcons win their 1st Super Bowl.”

Was there an “unrecognized black President”?….As far as Obama being “black”, his mother was white and he was raised by her and her parents who were also white. Obama’s father was essentially a “sperm doner” who did not participate in his upbringing. As far as the Falcons 1st Super Bowl win goes….let’s hope Tommy D can find some defensive help as I don’t think that J. Jones, as great as he is purported to be, can play cover LB or CB in the NFL…

Paddy O

May 22nd, 2011
12:12 am

for many years, Wild Bill Clinton was called the first black man elected President by many pundits. Why? Who knows. Either way you slice it though, Obama has one heckuva a tan!