Falcons address cornerback by signing Hughes, re-signing Armstrong


FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. (AP) — The Atlanta Falcons bolstered their group of cornerbacks on Monday by signing Mike Hughes to a two-year deal and re-signing Cornell Armstrong.

Hughes, 26, set a career high with 51 tackles, including three for losses, while starting six of 16 games in 2022 with Detroit. Hughes started in five of 17 games with Kansas City in 2021, when he had an interception and four forced fumbles.

Hughes was a first-round pick, No. 30 overall, by Minnesota from Central Florida in 2018.

Armstrong returns to Atlanta on a one-year deal. He had 33 tackles in 10 games, including four starts, in 2022.

Armstrong, 27, was a sixth-round draft pick by Miami from Southern Miss in 2018.

The Falcons lost depth at cornerback when Isaiah Oliver signed a two-year deal with San Francisco last week. A.J. Terrell and Casey Hayward are expected to return as starters at the position.

The Falcons have made defense a priority in free agency. The team signed former Cincinnati safety Jessie Bates III to a $64 million, four-year contract, linebacker Kaden Elliss to a three-year deal and defensive lineman David Onyemata, who played with Elliss in New Orleans, to a three-year deal.