Swift could be one of the draft's value picks

Jeremy Johnson

The Atlanta Falcons recently drew a roar from nearby Athens with the signing of University of Georgia star Todd Gurley.

Gurley signed a one-year, $6 million deal with the Falcons. By no stretch of the imagination is Gurley considered the future at the position for the franchise despite being only 25-years old at the moment. His history with knee injuries has him as a bandage for the Falcons.

The excitement generated by signing a former collegiate star could prove profitable in the marketing category.

There is a running back with just as much fanfare coming out of the UGA in the 2020 NFL Draft. D’Andre Swift was highly regarded as the top running back eligible for the April’s draft during the college football season. The junior ran for 1,218 yards and seven touchdowns for the Bulldogs in 2019. It seems over the last few months his stock has fallen off a bit and the stock of others in the class has risen.

Pro Football Focus has Swift as the second ranked running back behind Utah’s Zack Moss.

PFF’s mock draft doesn’t feature a running back in the first round. None of CBS Sports’ most recent mock drafts have Swift as a first round selection either.

247 Sports has the former Bulldog projected to be selected in the second at pick 55 to the Atlanta Falcons. This mock was posted on March 17 which was prior to the Falcons’ addition of Gurley.

Swift, as well as the other running backs in this class, could all go a lot higher, but there isn’t a position that has been devalued more than the running back position.

If Swift is available that late in the draft, it would be difficult to justify not drafting him and initially pairing him with Gurley to create a backfield similar to or even more talented than the one the Falcons found success with when Tevin Coleman and Devonta Freeman were the two-man tandem.

Swift’s skill set translates to the Falcons’ zone blocking scheme. He’d be a plus in the passing game. He caught 73 passes for 666 yards and five touchdowns in his three seasons in Athens.

Swift in Atlanta wouldn’t directly fill a need on a team looking to plug some defensive holes, but drafts are about acquiring talent. The Falcons can make the logistics of carries work later. Swift as a second round pick would be too good to pass up.