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Tuesday August 16th, 2022 5:17AM

Falcons sign LB Evans, OL Ifedi to add to free agent class

By The Associated Press
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FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. (AP) — The budget-conscious Atlanta Falcons signed former first-round picks Rashaan Evans and offensive lineman Germain Ifedi to one-year contracts on Wednesday.

Evans bolsters the Falcons at linebacker after spending the past four seasons with the Tennessee Titans. He was the 22nd overall pick in the 2018 draft from Alabama.

Ifedi gives Atlanta additional depth on an offensive line that struggled badly in 2021. He was No. 31 overall pick in 2016 by the Seattle Seahawks and spent the past two seasons with the Chicago Bears.

The Falcons had a major hole to fill at linebacker after Foyesade Oluokun left in free agency, especially with salary cap issues also raising questions about Deion Jones' future in Atlanta.

The 6-foot-2, 232-pound Evans started 50 of 59 games with the Titans. This past season, he played in 12 games with 11 starts, with 57 total tackles, three tackles for losses, two interceptions, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery.

Ifedi has appeared in 85 games with 83 starts at both tackle and guard over six NFL seasons. The 6-foot-5, 325-pounder made seven starts at tackle while playing in nine games for the Bears last season.

The Falcons return all five starters from an offensive line that struggled to protect Matt Ryan. Ifedi will likely get a chance to compete for a starting job, though he could also serve in a backup role all along the line.

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