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Mid-Week Injury Report: Michael Turner, Tony Gonzalez Don't Practice

I normally hold off on injury-related news until the weekend. The number of big names on this week's list, and the importance of the game coming up, convinced me to do it a little earlier.

We'll just run down all those who did not practice on Wednesday, with my thoughts on who will and won't play this weekend. Some of these are pretty easy—I can't imagine Michael Turner getting back on the field for this one, for instance—while calling exactly what Michael Koenen will do is much tougher. But that's why they pay me the big bucks. If, you know, anyone paid me the big bucks. Or even the little bucks. I'd settle for $1.50 and a tall can of Steel Reserve. Anybody?

Let's go down the line.

QB Matt Ryan: I'm not all that worried about Ryan. He's missed practices in each of the last three weeks now, and he was good to go against the New York Jets and Buffalo Bills. Despite his low completion percentage, Ryan had about as good a game as he's had all year against the Bills, so I like to think he's as close to healthy as he's going to get at this point and can drop some mad points on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Let's hope he feels the same way.

RB Michael Turner: This is a no-brainer. Jason Snelling and Jerious Norwood have been better than decent, and if Turner reaggravates this injury it could become chronic. If it's not already, that is. The best move is to sit Turner for the last game and ensure he comes back in classic Touchdown Vampire form in 2010. I wonder if anyone still has that Photoshop, actually...

WR Eric Weems: Our return ace is needed this week. I can't imagine Weems is going to miss out on this game, but he did get popped hard twice and may still be shaking that off. If he can't go, the team will likely employ Norwood as his spiritual successor, though I'm not sure his legendary speed has entirely returned.

TE Tony Gonzalez: This is a very bad time for us to lose Gonzo, but it appears the Falcons are going to have to play without him. He has a calf injury, did not return to action against the Bills and could easily risk re-aggravating it if he plays again. Despite his storied conditioning, I think we'll see a healthy mix of Justin Peelle and Keith Zinger against the Bucs.

LB Curtis Lofton: Shoulder and hamstring injuries? Fie! You can't keep Curtis Lofton off the field. Curtis Lofton is a potent killing machine sent from the future to destroy running backs. Curtis Lofton can slam a revolving door. If you have five dollars, and Curtis Lofton has five dollars, Curtis Lofton has more money than you. Curtis Lofton can unscramble an egg. Curtis Lofton is a stunt double for Optimus Prime. Curtis Lofton was born in a log cabin he built with his own hands. Curtis Lofton can strike a match on a bar of soap....

S Charlie Peprah: He's not real likely to play much if he does get on the field, and he's got an injured hammy, ergo he won't play. Call it Dave the Falconer's Unified Theory of Injured Backups.

K Matt Bryant: Bryant lost his father over the weekend. That's unimaginably devastating even for someone who didn't lose their son only a couple of years ago, and Bryant's also dealing with an injury. My thoughts are with him now, though I don't have any words beyond that. Some situations are beyond that.

I don't dare count Bryant out, because emotion is a powerful thing. But if he wants or needs to sit this one out, I think Steve Hauschka can step in and do alright. I'm putting him down as a true questionable.

P Michael Koenen: The man with more leg than The Rockettes has an injured head. The Falcons haven't made a move to ink another punter, so either Thomas DeCoud can getting astonishing hangtime or Koenen's going to be just fine for the game. At this point, I'd guess the latter.

So that's the list. As you can see, we're pretty damn banged up for the Bucs game. Your thoughts?