Putting the Falcons on the clock

March, 18, 2011
3/18/11
2:38
PM ET

"SportsCenter" is running its “On the Clock’’ series and the first NFC South team to be featured is the Atlanta Falcons. That’s mainly because the series is running in reverse order of the draft order. The Falcons have the No. 27 overall pick, which is the lowest NFC South team in the draft.

Chris Mortensen, Mel Kiper and Trent Dilfer discuss what the Falcons might do in the draft, and they touch on all the basics we’ve been hitting -- improving the pass rush, getting an explosive running back and a deep threat at wide receiver. Kiper throws out Iowa defensive end Adrian Clayborn as a possible pick, and that would be solid, if he’s still available.

But the most interesting part of this video might be Dilfer talking about Matt Ryan. Dilfer says Ryan is a rare talent and the Falcons need to put more on his shoulders. In other words, Dilfer is saying the Falcons need to open things up more for Ryan.

I’ve known Dilfer since he came into the league with the Buccaneers and have always enjoyed the fact that he’s not one to hold back on his opinions. In this particular case, I think this might be one of Dilfer’s best opinions ever. I’ve been saying for a couple years that Ryan is capable of doing more and the Falcons need to play more to his strengths.

I hope coach Mike Smith and offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey listen to Dilfer on this one.

Pat Yasinskas | email

ESPN Tampa Bay Buccaneers reporter

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