ATLANTA – The Atlanta Falcons opened up the second round of the 2014 NFL Draft by picking defensive tackle Ra'Shede Hageman from Minnesota.
Hageman was one of the top ten names listed by USA Today as the best available selections going into day two of the annual draft.
USA Today's take on Hageman:
If players were chosen purely on raw physical ability, Hageman would have been a Top 10 overall selection. Hageman is 6-6, 310 and highly athletic. His play, however, was very inconsistent as a senior.
The Falcons made it a priority to become bigger and more physical. The rebuild began with the acquisition of Paul Soliai and Tyson Jackson during free agency. Hageman, meanwhile, is an ideal defensive end for the 3-4 front. Hageman is long, strong and athletic.
In the third round, the Falcons picked up safety Dezmen Southward from Wisconsin.
According to USA Today, Southward adds versatility to the Falcons offense. He started at both cornerback and safety during his career with the Badgers. Last season, Southward started at safety and would slide to the slot against multiple-receiver sets. He's very fluid in his back pedal, but he regularly gets beaten by double moves.