Position Battle Preview: Falcons vs. Bengals

FLOWERY BRANCH, GA - MAY 12: Dominique Davis #14 of the Atlanta Falcons practices during the rookie minicamp at the Atlanta Falcons Training Facility on May 12, 2012 in Flowery Branch, Georgia. (Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images)

The Falcons enter their second game of the 2012 preseason tonight to face the Cincinnati Bengals. We saw several players shine in last week's matchup against Baltimore, but there are still plenty of positions yet to be decided.

As we look at the depth chart, the offensive line is the biggest area in question. Other than Tyson Clabo and Justin Blalock, there aren't certain starters at any position among the front five. Outside of this area, most of the first-string lineup is set, but backup positions are up for grabs right now.

Let's take a look at some of the main position battles heading into tonight's matchup.

Kevin Cone vs. Drew Davis: It appears that Davis is impressing folks around the Falcons organization. Cone saw action on special teams at the end of last season, something Smitty pointed out as well. Both receivers made tackles in the opener, which leaves the battle pretty even. We'll see if someone can emerge as a clear favorite after tonight.

John Parker Wilson vs. Dominique Davis: You all know how I feel about JPW. Dominique Davis is starting to turn heads, and if he continues to look sharp out there, I don't see why he couldn't move up on the depth chart. Chris Redman hasn't been anything special either, but the Falcons probably won't move him down to be honest.

Todd McClure vs. Joe Hawley (and his beard): McClure has held the center spot down for years. However, Hawley is splitting time with Mud Duck lately, and Daniel Cox says the competition is heating up. Hawley filled in last year at center when McClure was hurt, and also saw time at right guard. McClure is getting up there in age, and while he's still capable of anchoring the line, Hawley might be able to move ahead of him if he really shows up in the coming weeks.

Garrett Reynolds vs. Peter Konz: This is one position everyone was up in arms about when the depth chart was released. Reynolds was removed from the starting lineup towards the middle of last season, but people have been raving about his improvement so far in camp. He played well against the Ravens, and if he continues to play well, the spot will remain his. Konz, though, can't be written off. He's only a rookie, but he has a great pedigree and knowledge for the game. Let's hope one of the two can lock down right guard for the upcoming season. We don't need the same problems from 2011.

Mike Peterson vs. Pat Schiller vs. Max Gruder: Akeem Dent should be ready to go next week. For now, though, this is an important night for the backups at middle linebacker. Peterson played the middle man in Jacksonville for years, and while he's past his prime, he's a veteran who the club can utilize this year at an already thin position. Schiller and Gruder are rookies who both saw a little action last week. While Schiller is supposed to see a significant increase in playing time, Gruder will get his chance to prove himself as well.

What position battle will you be watching tonight?

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