Trades always make the first round of the NFL Draft more fun. The 2020 NFL draft should be no exception, especially with five teams possessing multiple first-round picks. A chaotic top-10 is in the cards.
But who’s the most likely team to get aggressive and make a power play?
According to USA TODAY, it’s the Atlanta Falcons.
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported last week that multiple teams expected Atlanta to move up, which could put the team within striking range of a top-tier cornerback — either Ohio State’s Jeff Okudah or Florida’s C.J. Henderson — or defensive lineman — maybe Auburn’s Derrick Brown or South Carolina’s Javon Kinlaw. Even versatile Clemson linebacker Isaiah Simmons could be a consideration, depending on how the top of the draft shakes out and how far the Falcons are willing to go.
The Falcons have a history of moving up in the first round, with the most noteworthy moment occurring in 2013 when they moved all the way from No. 30 overall to No. 3 overall for Julio Jones. It’s safe to say that deal worked out.
General manager Thomas Dimitroff orchestrated the Jones trade and has remained one of the league’s more active and aggressive GMs since. If there’s a prospect he covets, he’ll do what’s necessary to get him.
Dimitroff won’t have to travel as far up the first round as he had to for Jones this year. Currently holding the No. 16 pick, the Falcons need only jump, say, eight spots if they want to grab Henderson, who’s expected to be the second cornerback off the board.
If their target is Simmons, Atlanta may have to work their way into the top five. Given the history (or lack thereof) of draft-day trades by New York Giants general manager Dave Gettleman, the likelihood Dimitroff will pull another rabbit out of his hat drops quite a bit.