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Alabama QB Bryce Young: Future Falcons Draft Pick?

Is Atlanta's next franchise quarterback already on the roster?

The 2023 NFL Draft is over nine months away, but teams and analysts are still hard at work trying to identify the top prospects in the class.

For the Atlanta Falcons, one position particularly of interest is quarterback, where the recently traded Matt Ryan ran shop for 14 years. While the Falcons selected Cincinnati quarterback Desmond Ridder in the third round of this year's draft, the team may hold the options in the 2023 class in higher regard.

One of those prospects is Alabama quarterback Bryce Young, who, according to Pro Football Focus, the Falcons should be watching this fall.

College fans in Georgia are unfortunately all too familiar with Young’s game. The Alabama quarterback put together the single most impressive performance of any passer last year against the most talented collegiate defenses in at least the last decade. Even with options on the roster, a franchise quarterback is still atop the Falcons' wishlist for the 2023 draft. - PFF's Michael Renner 

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The 6-foot, 194-pound Young threw for over 4,800 yards in addition 47 touchdowns last season, both Alabama single-season records. Perhaps most impressive about the campaign is that it was Young's first as a starter, as he spent his opening season backing up New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones.

Young, the 2021 Heisman Trophy winner, will have to back up his historic season without star wideouts and 2022 draftees Jameson Williams (first round, Detroit Lions) and John Metchie III (second round, Houston Texans), but the talent pool at Alabama should provide Young with the weapons needed to perform at a high level.

Before now and the 2023 NFL Draft, the Falcons must figure out whether Ridder or veteran Marcus Mariota can be the team's quarterback moving forward. If general manager Terry Fontenot deems the answer to be "no," Young instantly becomes one of the favorites to be the Falcons' first-round pick.