On Friday, the Atlanta Falcons were one of 17 teams who attended Trevor Lawrence‘s Pro Day. Lawrence is set to undergo surgery on his non-throwing shoulder this Tuesday, so the league planned a special early workout for him.
Lawrence is the projected No. 1 overall draft pick in this year’s draft and the Jaguars are the team, most likely, to take him but, as we all know, anything can happen.
The other teams who joined the Falcons to take a look at Lawrence’s throwing arm up close and personal were the Steelers, 49ers, Broncos, Patriots, Panthers, Chargers, Saints, Dolphins, Giants, Lions, Eagles, Raiders, Texans, Titans, and Jets.
In his three seasons as a Clemson Tiger, Lawrence threw for a total of 10,098 yards passing and accounted for 108 touchdowns to just 17 interceptions.
But why did so many teams show up to Lawrence’s Pro Day if they knew their odds of getting Lawrence are slim to none?
Lawrence Wasn’t Really Solo During His Workout
Lawrence wasn’t actually alone during his Pro Day as he spent the day throwing to his Clemson teammate wide receiver, Cornell Powell, which is, realistically, why so many teams showed up.
The Clemson product got off to a slow start as a Tiger and didn’t catch over 15 passes in any season from 2016 to 2019. However, he really outshined in 2020 when he finished the season reeling in 53 receptions for 882 yards and seven touchdowns. But where he was truly outstanding was when DJ Uiagalelei started when Trevor Lawrence had COVID-19.
While Powell might not be selected in the first round or even the second, he is considered a hidden gem and will be gone by the early third-round, at the latest.
Ja’Marr Chase and DeVonta Smith are headlining this year’s NFL draft at the wide receiver position, but Powell received some much-deserved attention running routes for Lawrence.
The Falcons hold the No. 4 overall draft pick which they haven’t had a top 5 picks since taking Matt Ryan third overall in 2008. In total, the Falcons currently have five other picks, 35th (second), 68th (third), 99th (fourth), 132nd (fifth), and the 163rd (sixth).
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Falcons Will Need to Replace Julio Jones, Eventually
The Falcons have several holes to fill and while the wide receiver position isn’t necessarily one of them, they will need to plan for the future when rebuilding their roster.
Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley and Russell Gage will all be present for the 2021 season, but aside from that, the Falcons don’t have any consistent options on the depth chart. Also, Jones is entering the stage of his career where he doesn’t recover from injuries like the young buck he used to be. So when it’s time for Jones to move on from Atlanta or sit more games, who do the Falcons turn to?
Olamide Zaccheaus showed some flashes of hope last season, but he wasn’t reliable. Christian Blake grabbed the attention of fans, but again, he struggled in the spotlight. And Brandon Powell was useful at return and when he did see some action at receiver he scored twice!
But, the Falcons are in need of a fourth wideout who is a keeper, which is likely why they went to see Lawrence throw the skin to a very potential future Falcon.