Falcons quarterback Feleipe Franks getting reps at tight end

A dual-threat quarterback whose legs have been as prevalent in his game as his arm, Feleipe Franks is getting a chance to show off his hands, too.

Franks, heading into his second season with the Atlanta Falcons, has been working out at tight end during organized team activities.

An undrafted free agent out of Arkansas, Franks hauled in the highlight of the day in Thursday's OTAs, catching a touchdown from rookie QB Desmond Ridder.

"It gives you confidence seeing a play come together," Franks said, via the team website’s Scott Blair. "That's not just for me, but for [Ridder] who threw a great ball and the other receivers. It's a group effort. It's not just me running a route. It's everybody doing their job to make that play happen.

"When you see plays come together, it's nice and they can be staples going into the season. For sure, it's a confidence booster."

This isn't a completely new development for Franks and the Falcons. He got practice reps at special teams and tight end last offseason, according to the team website.

This time around, though, Franks' time at tight end is garnering more attention and more time.

"Right now he's working more at tight end than at quarterback," offensive coordinator Dave Ragone said, via the Associated Press.

The 6-foot-6, 234-pound Franks certainly has the frame for the spot and could help offer one of the most athletic tight end rooms in the NFL along with 2021 first-round pick Kyle Pitts, who's listed at 6-foot-6, 246 pounds. Right now, Franks is part of one more the athletic QB rooms with Marcus Mariota, Ridder and himself.

With the Falcons hopeful of hitting on Ridder as their QB of the future and Mariota getting a second chance as a starter under head coach Arthur Smith, seeing if Franks can make a larger contribution at another position is worth a shot.

Cordarrelle Patterson was an All-Pro four times as special teamer in his first eight seasons, but nobody could truly unlock his potential as an offensive contributor before Smith did in 2021. Earlier this offseason, the Falcons moved defensive back Avery Williams to running back. Could Franks possibly be the next position switch to pay off for Smith's Falcons?

It's far too early to predict that, but Franks is plenty pleased to have the opportunity.

"I'm about whatever I can do to help," said Franks, who appeared in nine games as a rookie with no pass attempts and three carries. "It was more about adding more value for myself in the quarterback and tight end room. For me, it's about being able to do more things, at tight end and quarterback and on special teams. I'll do whatever."

Right now, it's double the learning as Franks works with TEs and QBs. One help to him is working with Pitts, as the two were teammates at Florida prior to Franks transferring to Arkansas.

"I really want to learn what I'm being asked to do," Franks said. "With the tight ends, I really want to understand what they're doing so I'm not missing anything. I don't want to do too much at one time. So, learning that position, and obviously in the quarterback room, I'm staying on top of that. I just want to be available for whatever they need."

Whatever and wherever Franks is needed, it seems he's up for the task.

For a Falcons offense looking to build with Pitts, Patterson and first-round wide receiver Drake London, having the athletic 24-year-old as an option at tight end is at the very least intriguing.

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