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Falcons DC Jimmy Lake: We're going to play fast and free

The Falcons need to sort out their plans at quarterback before they can fully dig into what they are going to do offensively in 2024, but they have a slightly better sense of what their defense is going to look like.

New coordinator Jimmy Lake told reporters at a Tuesday press conference that the team is going to run a 3-4 base defense once they take the field. That alignment fits with the personnel on hand even if it isn't likely to wind up being the way that the team regularly lines up given how frequently teams bring extra defensive backs into games.

Regardless of the personnel on the field, Lake knows what he wants to see from the unit.

"We're going to play fast because we're going to get fast players," Lake said, via the team's website. "But they're going to play free because they know when we call that defense they can diagnose it, they can read and react."

An upgrade in quarterback play is essential to the Falcons' chances in 2024, but it will only take them so far if the defense doesn't hold up its end of the bargain. Making sure it does will be Lake's top priority.