Falcons take OT Matthews in first round

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ATLANTA —

The Atlanta Falcons selected Jake Matthews, an offensive lineman from Texas A&M in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

The Falcons were rumored to move up in the draft for much of April and May and many expected Generla Manager Thomas Dimitroff to make a trade.

Earlier in the night the Houston Texans selected South Carolina star defensive end Jadeveon Clowney with the first overall pick.

The Falcons have made a trade in each of his first six drafts with Atlanta. Usually the GM has moved up with trades. This year he could look to add even more depth to his draft by trading down — especially after the first round.

Dimitroff said being near the top of every round "is important for us."

"We've rarely had that," he said. "The opportunity to be at the top of (the second through fourth rounds) is something that could be very beneficial for us. Not only the opportunity to draft there but the opportunity to potentially move back because a lot of teams will be interested in messing around up in that area, so to speak."

Dimitroff has had success in his only other chances to select a player as high as No. 6. In 2008, his first draft with the Falcons, Ryan was the No. 3 overall pick. In 2011, he traded a package of five picks to move up and select receiver Julio Jones, who made the Pro Bowl the following year.

Some say Jones' season-ending foot injury in 2013 supported criticisms that Atlanta gave up too much for the receiver. Dimitroff said he remains "completely at ease" with the trade for Jones, who is expected to be ready for the 2014 season.

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