We've looked at some projected starters for Atlanta's secondary, now it's time to examine potential backups for the Falcons secondary.
CORNERBACK PEYTON THOMPSON
Peyton Thompson current ranks third on the Falcons depth chart at RCB behind Desmond Trufant and Robert McClain. Thompson was signed last year to Atlanta's practice squad and is seeing his first NFL action so far in the preseason.
Thompson spent four seasons at San Diego State and had a very solid career. He didn't play much during his freshmen year, but was a starter the next three years. He averaged 9.6 passes defended, 3.5 tackles for loss, and 41 total tackles per season with the Aztecs. He also had seven total interceptions.
This preseason, he's had two total tackles, one in each game. He hasn't really done much to impress so far this year and appears to be a long shot to make the team at this point. With two cornerbacks ahead of him on the depth chart at RCB,Thompson's best chance appears to be making the team via special teams. But everyone on special teams is on notice after the Falcons have given up two punt returns for touchdowns in consecutive weeks.
CORNERBACK DOMINIQUE FRANKS
Franks has been on the Falcons for three years and has seen time at nickel back, special teams and at corner since 2010.
He had his best year in 2011 when he had 15 total tackles, two interceptions, and five passes defended.
His stats went down a bit last season with no picks and only two passes defended. But his tackles stayed around the same with 14.
The Falcons know what they're getting in Franks. A solid special teams player who is decent in coverage and can play when called upon, but shouldn't be relied upon to be a consistent contributor.
He has a much better chance to make the team than Thompson given his NFL experience and his rapport with the team. There was some speculation that Franks may get a shot at a starting position before the NFL draft, but that speculation ceased once the Falcons took Desmond Trufant and Robert Alford in the first two rounds of the NFL draft this year.
Here are the other posts from our position battles series:
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- Atlanta Falcons Position Battles: Secondary (Part 2)- the Challenger
- Atlanta Falcons Position Battles: Secondary (Part 1)- the Future
- Atlanta Falcons Position Battles: Secondary (Part 3)- Returning Corner Starters
- Atlanta Falcons Position Battles: Defensive Line- Part 2: Fighting for Position
- Atlanta Falcons Position Battles Defensive Line- Part I: Mainstays
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