Atlanta Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff learned from one of the best organization's in the NFL when he worked with the New England Patriots. In the draft the Patriots are notorious for trading back and stockpiling draft picks, well Dimitroff has not followed that philosophy as his tenure with the Falcons.
The biggest move was in the 2011 draft where the Falcons traded five picks to move up 21 spots to select wide receiver Julio Jones. It has become commonplace for the Falcons to make multiple trades during the draft.
This year the Falcons do not have the luxury with many draft picks as they only have six picks with their first not coming until No. 55 overall.
Even with limited picks this year, Dimitroff defends his liberal trading policy by saying that if he sees a player he likes he makes a deal happen to get that player:
"If you feel that you want to package picks to go up and get the player that you feel can help the team, well, then you use your draft picks as fodder to go after that player," Dimitroff said.
"The draft is set for a team to be able to bargain and to be able to use what you have to pull in the players that you need, the players that you think you need to help your team be successful," Dimitroff said. "We feel in the past that we've been able to utilize those picks more effectively by using part of them as trade bait."
The strategy has worked well as 26 of the 32 players Dimitroff has drafted are either starters or key reserves on the team, however two of the biggest misses came from trading to get offensive tackle Sam Baker and defensive tackle Peria Jerry both were selected in 2009.
With only six picks this year it will be difficult for the Falcons to make too many moves, but do not be surprised if the Falcons do end up making some trades.