The Atlanta Falcons have made another addition to their secondary in free agency. The Falcons are finalizing a two-year contract with cornerback Mike Hughes, according to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler.
Mike Hughes made six starts and played 16 games for the Detroit Lions in the 2022 season. Hughes joins the Falcons after recording a career-high 51 tackles and three tackles for a loss last year. Atlanta has already made several defensive signings in free agency, adding safety Jessie Bates and defensive tackle David Onyemata.
The Minnesota Vikings selected Hughes with the No. 30 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, Hughes never reached expectations as a first-round pick with the Vikings. Minnesota traded Hughes to the Kansas City Chiefs in the 2021 offseason.
The Falcons made one of the biggest signings in all of free agency by acquiring Bates. The safety was one of the top players at his position during his time with the Cincinnati Bengals. Atlanta reportedly gave Bates a four-year, $64 million contract.
Onyemata signed for $35 million over three years. The Falcons also brought in linebacker Tae Davis, who spent last season with the Cleveland Browns.
Atlanta ranked 27th in total defense for the 2022 season. Only three teams surrendered a worse passer rating to opposing quarterbacks than the Falcons.
Taylor Heinicke signed with the Falcons in free agency. The quarterback is expected to back up Desmond Ridder, who Atlanta hopes is its future franchise quarterback. Heinicke’s contract could be worth up to $20 million over two years.
The Falcons were one of three NFC South teams that posted a 7-10 record last season. Atlanta finished only a game out of first place.