Falcons GM Terry Fontenot aims to draft the top player available, emphasizing it’s based on their own evaluation criteria.

The Atlanta Falcons’ strategy for the 2024 NFL Draft appears straightforward: prioritize selecting the best available player. However, Falcons general manager Terry Fontenot elaborated on this notion during his pre-draft media briefing on Tuesday.

Fontenot emphasized that when they talk about choosing the best player available, it’s in the context of their team’s needs and evaluations, rather than solely relying on external experts’ rankings. He highlighted the diversity among the 32 teams’ draft boards, emphasizing that each team’s board can differ significantly beyond the top 10 picks.

With the draft approaching, the Falcons currently possess eight picks, with the order subject to change due to potential trades. Fontenot noted the ongoing influx of trade proposals and the need to stay sharp amid the evolving draft landscape.

The Falcons hold the No. 8 overall pick, but Fontenot hinted at the possibility of trading up or down depending on their evaluation of available players.

Fontenot outlined the team’s approach to player selection, categorizing prospects into various groups based on their potential impact and positional needs. While they aim to prioritize impact players, Fontenot acknowledged the importance of addressing positional needs when multiple players are considered.

Balancing positional needs with selecting the best talent available poses a challenge, especially when considering the Falcons’ specific needs at positions like edge, cornerback, and defensive tackle. Nonetheless, Fontenot stressed the importance of avoiding reaching for needs and instead focusing on maximizing value with each pick.

Despite the complexity of decision-making, Fontenot expressed confidence in the team’s preparation and internal discussions, emphasizing their commitment to selecting the best players based on their own evaluations and board rankings.

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