Falcons' Dan Quinn on Dontari Poe: 'I do want him here'

ATHENS, Ga. – Atlanta Falcons coach Dan Quinn said he had a "good visit" with free-agent nose tackle Dontari Poe and wants Poe on the team. Now it’s up for Poe to decide if the feeling is mutual.

Poe arrived in Atlanta on Monday night and spent time at the Falcons’ facility Tuesday before heading to Miami for his visit with the Dolphins, which concluded Wednesday evening.

Poe previously met with the Indianapolis Colts and Jacksonville Jaguars.

"He was taking one more visit, so hopefully we’ll have some news here in next day or so," Quinn said during a Wednesday appearance at the University of Georgia's pro day. "I do want him here. I liked him."

Asked if the Falcons made Poe an offer, Quinn said, "Nick [Polk] and them talked to his agents, so I know they are discussing offers."

The Falcons have around $14.5 million in cap space, according to the latest numbers from the NFL Players Association. Poe, who is willing to accept a one-year deal, could command up to $10 million after not receiving the $13.468 million franchise tag with Kansas City. And the Jaguars, who already added defensive tackle Calais Campbell at four years, $60 million ($30 million guaranteed), still have $47 million in cap space.

Quinn talked about how he envisioned Poe’s role in the Falcons’ defense.

"In this system, to be disruptive, we’d play him at both nose and 3-technique," Quinn said. "I think that’s an important piece of it, to show the penetrating ability you have over a guard compared to over a center."

Quinn said he also spoke to Poe about maintaining the proper weight without getting into specifics about how much Poe weighed during his visit. Poe is listed at 6-foot-3 and 346 pounds. The heaviest player on the Falcons roster is nose tackle Chris Mayes, a rookie last season who was placed on injured reserve and weighs 323.

"It was definitely a topic we talked about for sure to say -- and for most players -- 'How do they play at their best and what [weight] do they play at their best?'" Quinn said. "To be a penetrator, you have to be a little lighter. So it was definitely a topic. I won’t give you the number that I recommended. But even if we do decide, 'OK, this is right fit for him and for us,’ [the weight] is definitely something we’ll talk about."

Poe, a two-time Pro Bowler and 11th overall pick out of Memphis in 2012, is considered one of the top free agents remaining on the market. His career totals include 200 tackles, 13 sacks, 10 passes batted down and two forced fumbles in 4,074 defensive snaps played.

The Falcons are looking for help along the interior of the defensive line after releasing defensive tackle Tyson Jackson and not re-signing defensive tackle Jonathan Babineaux. The Falcons signed former Dallas Cowboys defensive end Jack Crawford to a three-year contract, and Crawford has the versatility to move inside in the nickel. The team also re-signed Courtney Upshaw, who has the same ability to play inside.