Atlanta may mix up this whole draft order.
Two years ago, the Atlanta Falcons signed Thomas DeCoud to a five-year contract. He subsequently earned a Pro Bowl berth after the 2012 season. Now he's going to be looking for a job.
Rand Geitlin of Yahoo! Sports reports that DeCoud will be released by the Falcons by the fourth day of the league year (March 11), if not before. (We'd vote on before.) A big chunk of DeCoud's salary becomes guaranteed by that date, and there's no reason to think the Falcons will string out the process for a player who has played all six of his NFL seasons in Atlanta.
At his best, DeCoud is a rangy safety that can make plays on the ball. But the 28-year-old struggled in all facets of the game last season. We had previously mentioned DeCoud as a potential cap cut; his tag-team partner at safety, William Moore, should be safe.
The move will save the Falcons $3 million against the salary cap, and create another hole on their paper-thin defense. We expect Atlanta to be very active over the next few weeks.