Mitchell Trubisky has been suggested as a possible Matt Ryan replacement in 2022, but not everyone reporting on the Atlanta Falcons thinks Trubisky is linked with NFC South this offseason.
ESPN Falcons reporter Michael Rothstein recently discussed the Trubisky rumors with Heavy’s Stephanie Otey. Rothstein’s response was quite categorical: “I haven’t heard the rumors about Mitch Trubisky, and, I mean, back up, of course. I don’t think that makes sense right now as a starter.
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Watch and listen to the full part of Trubisky’s interview here:
Would the hawks miss a trick by ignoring Trubisky?
Rothstein isn’t convinced, but not everyone at ESPN shares his point of view that Trubisky is not suitable for Atlanta. Earlier in December, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler named the former Chicago Bears first-round bust as a cheap option to replace 36-year-old Ryan.
Significantly, Fowler cited Falcons offensive coordinator Dave Ragone as “Trubisky’s intimate acquaintance from his days on the Chicago staff.” As the player’s quarterbacks coach, Ragone helped guide Trubisky to the Pro Bowl in 2018, one of the few bright spots in the signalman’s career with the Bears.
Trubisky was finally dumped when the Bears gave up his fifth year option in 2020. It was an ignominious end for the player drafted second overall in 2017, but the Falcons could still revive Trubisky’s career.
He would function as a more multidimensional threat than Ryan, who remains a classic but static pocket passer. In contrast, Trubisky is a talented runner, a skill Ragone helped unlock in Chicago.
Mobility is one of the reasons Trubisky has adapted so well to saving Josh Allen with the Buffalo Bills. The Bills committed an offense based on releasing a double-threat quarterback. Trubisky has spent nearly two seasons studying offensive coordinator Brian Daboll’s plan, who keeps many designed QB runs in the playbook.
Adding this dimension to their own scheme would make the Falcons more unpredictable offensively. A quarterback able to beat defenses with his legs would also increase the power of Atlanta’s offense, namely a running game led by Cordarrelle Patterson.
Do the Falcons need a QB gadget?
Maybe Trubisky wouldn’t be suitable as a starter every time with the Falcons, but that doesn’t mean Ragone and head coach Arthur Smith couldn’t find some creative ways to get him involved anyway. . He might perform better as a gadget-style quarterback who can add a few new looks to the offense.
It’s something the Falcons have experienced this season, according to Rothstein. He mentioned how the Felipe Franks backup was used.
Rothstein said: “They seem to have a plan for Felipe Franks at this point because they’ve used him a bit in special teams. They laughed at him much like a tight end, like Taysom Hill earlier in the season.
While Franks has the raw skills to be a hybrid-style weapon for the Falcons, Trubisky possesses many of the same traits. The difference is that the latter is a more proven product and has a deeper history with Ragone.
It also helps that Smith hasn’t been afraid to put different people in the pocket this season. He has used Patterson with wildcat looks, but not always with success.
Setting up a natural quarterback who can execute this type of attack would improve the Falcons’ effectiveness in the red zone. This problem surfaced ugly in the 31-13 Week 15 loss to the San Francisco 49ers, when Smith was left to bemoan the missed opportunities, per Tori McElhaney from the official website of the team:
Putting a more unpredictable quarterback on offense in these situations would surely solve the problem.
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