August 24, 2012; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Atlanta Falcons running back Michael Turner (33) runs over Miami Dolphins defensive tackle Jared Odrick (98) in the first quarter at Sun Life Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-US PRESSWIRE
With Dirk Koetter's arrival in Atlanta came a promise to bring about a new approach to the Falcons offense. One of the most talked about facets has been the implementation of a screen game, which we have already seen in use through three games this preseason.
What first comes to mind when you think of Michael Turner? If you said All-Pro receiver...well, I'm not really sure who you've been watching the past four years. While Turner's receiving numbers have increased over each of the past three seasons, they haven't stood out to any opposing defense.
Turner finished 2011 with 17 catches, his highest total in eight years in the NFL. His role in Atlanta has consistently been tough running back who can handle a heavy workload, but that looks like it will change as we head into the 2012 season.
In three games this preseason Turner has six catches on seven targets for 50 yards. He saw very little action in their first matchup against the Ravens, and it was only to get a couple carries in. So, in the past two games, he's caught six passes, over 30 percent of his receiving total last year.
I'm not suggesting Turner is going to turn into Darren Sproles (forgive me for that comparison). I'm simply saying he's going to have a bigger impact on the passing game, and he can find success here. He's actually looked like a decent receiver so far. The Falcons aren't giving Turner 300+ carries again this year, so why not utilize him elsewhere for the kind of money they're paying him? What do you guys think, should the Falcons continue to use him in the passing game?