2022 Atlanta Falcons Offseason: Breaking Down the Special Teams Unit

Atlanta Falcons special teams leader Younghoe Koo
Photo Credit: Jim Dedmon/USA TODAY Sports

For the better part of the season, the Atlanta Falcons had one of the best special teams units in the NFL. Younghoe Koo, Thomas Morstead and Josh Harris didn’t miss a kick attempt or have a bad punt the entire time Morstead was with the Falcons. Harris was a second-team All-Pro. Koo was his steady self the entire season with his only misses from 45 and 50 yards.

Under Contract:

P Dom Maggio: 1 year, $705,000 left on his contract

The Falcons re-signed their practice squad punter for the cheap heading into the offseason. Dom Maggio didn’t play a game for the Falcons outside of the 2021 preseason. He’s a decent punter, but the team would be better off finding more talented options than Maggio is.

Unrestricted Free Agents:

K Younghoe Koo

P Thomas Morstead

LS Josh Harris

If the Falcons do anything with their salary cap space, it should be to keep this talented unit together. Younghoe Koo is one of the most reliable kickers in the NFL. As a holder and punter, Thomas Morstead has shown that he’s exceptional and should be in the long-term plans of the team. Josh Harris finally got recognized for the consistent job he does this year.

Current Need

Currently, the Falcons have none of their solid unit — that’s been together for most of the season — under contract. Ideally, just re-signing all of them is the right move. Thomas Morstead should be consistent again for at least another couple of seasons, and Koo is showing no signs of regression. Josh Harris has been consistently one of the better long snappers in the NFL, regardless of who is punting or holding.

Potential Future Need

Even if the Atlanta Falcons do re-sign the entire special teams unit, Thomas Morstead and Josh Harris are getting up there in years. Having the future in mind, the Falcons could look at younger options. However, those positions are low-value in terms of both money and draft investment league-wide. So, not too much investment isn’t required to keep good veterans around.

What the Plan Should Be Moving Forward

The goal should be to keep together the unit of Younghoe Koo, Thomas Morstead and Josh Harris together for the next three or four years until one of them shows any signs of regression. If they do, then replace them with quality players on low-cap contracts until you find their long-term replacement.

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