Falcons draft Mississippi State safety Charles Mitchell

By George Henry/The Associated Press

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. — The Atlanta Falcons have picked Mississippi State strong safety Charles Mitchell in the middle of the sixth round of the NFL draft.

Atlanta has three safeties returning from 2011 — starters Thomas DeCoud and William Moore and backup Shann Schillinger.

Mitchell played in all 50 games of his career and made 37 starts at safety with Mississippi State.

He is the second defensive player picked by the Falcons in Saturday’s final rounds of the draft. Atlanta chose Troy defensive end Jonathan Massaquoi in the fifth round.

Mitchell, a team captain at Mississippi State, likely will compete with Schillinger for a roster spot and must show Falcons coaches he can contribute heavily on special teams