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Atlanta making a huge investment in the offensive line with Alex Mack

The Falcons are ready to make their first splash of the offseason. Alex Mack will be the new center.

The Atlanta Falcons will add center Alex Mack once the free agency period begins Wednesday afternoon.

The deal will reportedly be for five years with the first two years fully guaranteed.

Mack voided the final three years of his contract with the Browns to become an unrestricted free agent. The 30-year old Mack had spent seven seasons in Cleveland and made three Pro Bowl teams.

Mack broke his fibula in the 2014 season and missed 11 games. But in the other six seasons of his career, Mack has played and started in all 16 games each year.

Mack is 6-4 and weighs 311 pounds. He was a first round pick in the 2009 draft out of Cal.  Mack played for Falcons’ offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan when the coach was on Cleveland’s coaching staff.

The Falcons have had issues at center for the last several seasons since the retirement of Todd McClure. Mike Person started 14 games this past season at center for Atlanta, while James Stone and Gino Gradkowski started the other two games.

In 2014 Joe Hawley (4 starts), Peter Konz (3 starts) and Stone (9 starts) split the time at center, while Konz (9 starts) and Hawley (7 starts) played the position in 2013.

The revolving door has not helped quarterback Matt Ryan, who will likely appreciate the investment in a member of the offensive line. Jake Matthews and Ryan Schraeder are the tackles, but both will be in their third seasons this year. Mack will immediately become the veteran leader of the offensive line.

The Falcons are also looking to add a guard, as last year’s starter Chris Chester is a free agent. Kansas City’s Jeff Allen has been mentioned as a possibility.

Listen to “The Bill Shanks Show” from 3-6 p.m. weekdays on WPLA Fox Sports 1670 AM in Macon and online at http://www.foxsports1670.com/. Follow Bill at twitter.com/BillShanks and email him at thebillshanksshow@yahoo.com.


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