Dec. 13: Tommy Nobis was the man Atlanta built its NFL franchise. Nobis, a linebacker from Texas, was the first player drafted by Atlanta. Mr. Falcon was 74.
Photo: AJC
Photo: AJC

5 things to know about the Falcons on Friday

Here are five things to know about the Falcons on Friday:

1. Nobis news coming soon: Former Falcons linebacker Tommy Nobis was a finalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s 2020 Centennial Class.

The blue-ribbon committee of football executives and selectors meet in Canton on Tuesday to pick the 15 member class. The Centennial Slate will be announced at 7 a.m. Wednesday on “Good Morning Football” on NFL Network. 

The Class of 2010 will consist of 20 members. The Centennial Slate will includes 10 seniors (players who last played more than 25 seasons ago), three contributors (an individual other than a player or coach), and two coaches (who last coached more than five seasons ago) and were voted on from a list of 38 Finalists.

The Centennial Blue-Ribbon Panel scrutinized nearly 300 nominees in the process.

2. Mularkey retires: Former Falcons tight ends coach and offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey retired Thursday a little over a week after the passing of Sam Wyche, the former Bengals and Buccaneers head coach.

In 1994, Wyche gave Mularkey his start in coaching with the Bucs. He brought Wyche’s no-huddle offense with him to the Falcons, and he and quarterback coach Bill Musgrave installed it for Matt Ryan in 2008. 

3. Whitt on staff: Joe Whitt Jr. was added to the coaching staff as the secondary coach. There was no news about Doug Mallory, who served as the defensive backs coach last season. 

Quinn was impressed by Whitt’s defensive backs’ ability to get position for interceptions. 

4. Steele to lead the West: Falcons offensive assistant coach Ben Steele was named the head coach of the West team for the East-West Shrine Bowl on Thursday. The college all-star game will be played Jan. 18 in St. Petersburg, Fla. 

5. Free agency situation. The Falcons have 26 coming free agents. Tight end Austin Hooper and linebacker De’Vondre Campbell are at the top of the list. 

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