Hawkins was selected in the fourth-round (134th overall) of the 2020 draft.
“Coming out of Cal, one of the things you saw was one, excellent instincts, whether he was playing quarters in the back end of the field and he was a really good tackler," Quinn said. "When we’re looking for that safety spot, obviously coming into the season, we weren’t exactly sure where (Neal) could be, so having another player that had that kind of tackling ability and physicality, that’s what we were looking for, but he’s off to a good start.
"You saw him getting some of his development on special teams. He played a little bit more at Dallas. That was kind of his first taste to get going, but on those teams side of things, you’ve seen it time and again through the years, that’s where the development starts and then you keep working it as the season’s going based on how a guy is doing on special teams. So far, Jaylinn has been somebody that has definitely deserved some reps.”
Allen was playing some nickel and dime, in the five defensive back and six defensive back alignments.
Allen Bailey took over for McKinley at defensive end last week against the Bears.
Elliott Fry will take over the kicking duties and will be making his NFL debut.
Jaylinn Hawkins' Draft Bio
Fourth round (134th overall) –- Jaylinn Hawkins, S, California
Height: 6-foot. Weight: 208 pounds. Arm length: 31 3/4 inches. Hand size: 9 1/2 inches. Vertical jump: 35 1/2 inches. Broad jump: 9 feet, 9 inches.
Overview: Hawkins, 22, is from Buena Vista, California. He redshirted in 2015 because of a shoulder injury. He went on to play in 49 games and start 39 for the Bears. He finished his career with 158 tackles, 9.5 tackles for losses, two sacks and three forced fumbles. He also had 17 passes defensed and 10 interceptions. He was honorable mention All-Pac 12 last season. He plays with good instincts and toughness. “Really good range in coverage,” ESPN analyst Mel Kiper said. “I thought he really (sought) out that football. ... He has to be a more consistent tackler.” Hawkins is the fourth player the Falcons have selected from California in club history and the first since 2008 (Thomas DeCoud). The Falcons selected Syracuse punter Sterling Hofitcher in the sround
Falcons' next four games
Falcons at Green Bay Packers, at 8:15 p.m. Monday, Oct. 5
Panthers at Falcons at 1 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 11
Falcons at Vikings at 1 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 18
Lions at Falcons at 1 p.m. Sunday Oct. 25
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