Originally posted on Fox Sports South  |  Last updated 1/25/12
With the start of NFL free agency less than two months away and the Atlanta Falcons in the midst of a coaching staff overhaul, the defensive side of the ball is the one that should occupy the front office the most. The Falcons have nine free agents on defense and five of them are starters, as head coach Mike Smith considers the nickel back a starter. The most pressing are defensive end John Abraham, the NFLs active leader in sacks, middle linebacker Curtis Lofton and cornerback Brent Grimes, a Pro-Bowler in 2010. Two of the teams top three safeties, Thomas DeCoud and James Sanders, also are free agents. According to ProFootballFocus.com, DeCoud played 965 snaps, second only among the teams free agents to Loftons 1,008. Nickelback Kelvin Hayden, who was injury prone and only played 223 snaps, is the other starter. So what will general manager Thomas Dimitroff do, specifically in regard to Abraham? Some clues might have been provided by new defensive coordinator Mike Nolan through ...
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