• Home
  • What Is The Atlanta Falcons Plan With Michael Penix Jr.?

Category: Atlanta Falcons

Share & Comment:

What Is The Atlanta Falcons Plan With Michael Penix Jr.?

The Atlanta Falcons might have pulled off the biggest surprise of the 2024 NFL Draft.

When Roger Goodell stepped to the podium to announce the eighth-overall pick, there was no one outside of the Falcon draft room that expected the selection to be Michael Penix Jr.

Well, that is what happened. Less than two months after giving Kirk Cousins a four-year, $180-million deal in free agency, the Falcons added his replacement with a Top 10 pick. This is confusing on many levels so we will try to find a path to figure out the Falcons’ plan.

First, let’s talk about the confusion. Yes, Cousins is signed for the near future. This addition makes it seem like Atlanta believes that it was one player away from competing, which might be true in a weak NFC South. If this is the belief, it would have benefitted the Falcons to get Cousins another weapon or improve the defense in hopes of competing.

When looking at the names that were available, Rome Odunze and Dallas Turner lead the candidates that were on the board. Not to mention Old Fashanu or some strong offensive lineman that could have added to the pool in Atlanta.

It came out that new head coach Raheem Morris was infatuated with Penix Jr. and wanted him on the roster. We have seen the Green Bay Packers follow suit years later and let Jordan Love sit behind Aaron Rodgers before taking over as the starting quarterback. The difference is, Love is just 25 years old. Penix Jr. is entering the league at 24 years old already.

The contract of Cousins actually isn’t the major issue. He is slated to make $100 million guaranteed during the duration of the deal. There is an out for Atlanta after year three where he would only carry a $12.5 million cap hit for the fourth and final year, which is far less than the $57 million it would be if he was on the roster. This seems like the logical time for Penix Jr. to take over, if not before.

It is clear that the plan for the Falcons is to compete in the short-term. That is the only reason a veteran quarterback like Cousins is added. Morris and the Falcons also prioritized adding his replacement, and seemingly did it without letting Cousins know. This year, the Falcons will look to return to the postseason and let Penix Jr. learn the system.

When the Washington product does take the field, Atlanta better hope that he is the future because it would look like an even bigger waste if he fails.


Sign up below for the latest news, stories and podcasts from our affiliates

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.