Wow, what a slew of news coming from Atlanta where the house has been cleaned spotless, oh except for all of the incompetence dripping on the floor from ownership and whatever other crazy people are running the organization. So here’s what we’re going to do, we’re going to look at these ridiculous hires, one by one, and analyze how four very important positions have a very high likelihood of being doomed to failure.
Terry Fontenot, GM
This is by far the least offensive hire, as Fontenot has very good experience as a College Scout in New Orleans, helping to build one of the least productive defenses into the best one. Unfortunately, my worry with Fontenot is that he was only able to build a Super Bowl roster only once, but the Saints made deep playoff runs several times. I also have a small issue with the fact that he has been limited to JUST the New Orleans Saints, although that kind of consistency can be a good thing as well.
Arthur Smith, HC
Boy if this doesn’t take the cake for stupid hires, everybody is talking Matt Ryan revival based off of Ryan Tennahill’s development, let’s go over why comparing the two is utter nonsense. Tannehill had not yet hit his peak, whereas Ryan hit his peak five seasons ago. Ryan Tannehill was also switching systems, whereas Matt Ryan will be staying in the exact same place. Smith’s offense also leans heavily on the running game, Derrick Henry has been the leading rusher every year for the two years that Smith was the OC, guess what the Falcons have absolutely none of. As if that was not enough, Tannehill had three consistently good receivers, Ryan has Julio who is always injured, Calvin Ridley who admittedly is elite, and absolute peanuts behind him. Smith also utilized his tight ends heavily, will he be able to continue to do so with Hayden Hurst? Doubtful. And this isn’t even half of the stupidity, not only was Raheem Morris available as a great in house option who had worked with both the offense and the defense, he also had been with the Falcons for multiple seasons, and was liked by the organization. So they let Morris walk out, fine, why the hell are the Falcons in bed with Arthur Smith if Eric Bienemy is floating out in the head coaching realm.
Dave Ragone, OC
Boy what a weird move, Ragone has been on some of the very worst offenses in the NFL, let’s go over some of the highlights. Titans WR Coach, 2011-2012, anyone remember the Titans having one of the most boring, stale, receiver groups in the entire NFL. So after that he stays in Tennessee as the quarterbacks coach with Ryan Fitzpatrick and Jake Locker, how cute. From there Ragone moved to Washington in 2015 as the offensive quality control coach, where the Redskins slid into the NFC Least with Kirk Cousins and a demolished RG3. So I guess you could call it a mild success, but squeezing in a 9-7 title in the NFC East is not anything to be standing on the table about. Ragone was then the quarterbacks coach in Chicago from 2016-2019, leading visionary quarterbacks by the names of Matt Barkley, Jay Cutler, Mike Glennon, Mitch Trubisky, and Chase Daniel. Truly an elite class. People will yap about the 12-4 Chicago season, well I hate to break it to you but they were carried by the best defense in the NFL. In 2020 Ragone worked as the passing game coordinator, also in Chicago. Foles and Trubisky were both awful in 2020, the passing game was nothing to be jumping up and down about. So with all this in mind, there is only one question to ask. What the hell Atlanta!?
Dean Pees, DC
I do not find this nearly as obscene as Smith or Ragone, but I worry about Pees’s effectiveness late in his career, especially after coming out of retirement very recently. Pees led what was an extremely mediocre defense in 2018 and 2019, and although there were some great defenses with the Patriots and Ravens, none of them ended up keeping their dominant play, and Pees always inevitably ends up leaving within five or so years. I don’t like this hire, but it could have been so much worse.