As the Falcons prepare for the 2019 NFL draft, let's take a look back at the franchise's top pick each year since 2010.

5 things to know about Falcons’ middle round draft successes

Pro Bowl Falcons Freeman, Childs, Mitchell and Reaves were not high draft picks 

The Falcons have two compensatory picks in the fourth and fifth round of the upcoming NFL draft, which is set for April 25-27 in Nashville, Tenn. 

Teams are awarded compensatory picks from the league office for losing players in the previous season’s round of free agency. Last season, the Falcons lost wide receiver Taylor Gabriel (Bears), defensive tackle Dontari Poe (Panthers) and defensive end Adrian Clayborn (Patriots).

The Falcons will draft 14th overall in the first round. They will have two picks in the fourth and fifth round. 

“We think that we can find some really good quality players where we are at 14 and up to 47, but also as we start moving into those compensatory picks in the fourth and fifth rounds,” Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff said. “I think there is going to be a nice group of people to pick from.”

Here are five things to know about how the Falcons have fared in the fourth- and fifth-rounds of the draft:

1. Last season: The Falcons selected running back Ito Smith in the fourth-round (126th overall). The Falcons traded their fifth-round pick to Denver in the Ty Sambrailo deal.

2. Four picks in 2017: The Falcons had one fourth-round pick and three fifth-round picks in 2017. Guard Sean Harlow, the fourth-round pick, has yet to play in a game.

In the fifth-round, the Falcons selected defensive back Damontae Kazee (149), running back Brian Hill (156) and tight end Eric Saubert (174).  

Kazee started at free safety last season after Ricardo Allen suffered a rupture Achilles injury and tied for second in the league with seven interceptions. He’s moving to nickel back.

Hill and Saubert have been reserves.

3. Campbell a keeper: In 2016, the Falcons selected DeVondre Campbell with their fourth-round pick (115) and he’s been a starter since arriving.

The team didn’t have a fifth-round pick in 2016. 

4. Jarrett picked. In the fourth-round of the 2015 draft, the Falcons selected wide receiver Justin Hardy (107). Defensive tackle Grady Jarrett (137) was drafted in the fifth. The Falcons trade up to get Jarrett.

Hardy has been a reserve and key special teamer, while Jarrett has developed into a starter and currently holds the team’s $15.2 million franchise tag.

5a. Freeman, Allen picked. In 2014, the Falcons had two fourth- and fifth-round picks.

In the fourth-round, the Falcons selected running back Devonta Freeman (103) and linebacker Prince Shembo (139). Defensive back Ricardo Allen (147) and linebacker Marquis Spruill (168) were taken in the fifth-round.

Freeman turned into a Pro Bowl back and Allen has been a starter after being cut, put on the practice squad and being converted to a free safety. 

Shembo and Spruill are out of the NFL.

5b. Historically good picks: Here’s a look at fourth or fifth picks by the Falcons, who went on to play more than 100 NFL games. 

2011:  Running back Jacquizz Rodgers, fifth (145), has played in 110 NFL games. 
2007: Linebacker Stephen Nicholas, fourth (109), played in 101 games. 
2005: Defensive end Chauncey Davis, fourth (128), played in 102 games, six seasons with the Falcons and one with the Bears. 
2005: Linebacker Michael Boley, fifth (128), played in 131 games.  
2004: Linebacker Demorrio Williams, fourth (101), played in 138 games with the Falcons, Chiefs and Chargers. 
2001: Guard Roberto Garza, fourth (99), played in 206 games. Played four seasons with the Falcons before going on to play 10 seasons with the Bears. 
1998: Wide receiver/returner Tim Dwight, fourth (114), played in 116 games. 
1997: Linebacker Henri Crockett, fourth (100), played in 103 games. Spent five of his seven NFL seasons with the Falcons. 
1996: Defensive back Juran Bolden, fourth (127), played in 109 games. Did two stints with the Falcons while playing for six different teams. 
1993: Linebacker Ron George, fifth (124), played in 124 games. 
1992: Defensive back Frankie Smith, fourth (104), played in 103 games, none with the Falcons.  
1988: Cornerback Charles Dimry, fifth (110), played in 183 games, but with the Falcons for three seasons. 
1983: Tackle Brett Miller, fifth (129), played in 118 games. 
1981: Guard John Scully, fourth (109), played 112 games.
1981: Tackle Eric Sanders, fifth (136), played in 158 games. 
1980: Defensive back Kenny Johnson, fifth (137), played in 127 games and spent seven seasons with the Falcons. 
1974: Tight end Henry Childs, fifth (109), played in 103 games and was selected to one Pro Bowl (1979 with Saints).
1970: Center Ken Mendenhall, fifth (116), played 143 games for the Colts. 
1969: Tight end Jim Mitchell, fifth (81), played 155 games and selected to two Pro Bowls (1969) and (1972).
1966: Defensive back Ken Reaves, fourth (49), played 165 games and selected to one Pro Bowl (1969). 

Subscribe to “The Bow Tie Chronicles” podcast with the AJC’s D. Orlando Ledbetter on iTunes or on the new AJC sports podcasts page.

Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.

Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.

X