The good news keeps coming for the Falcons.
You may remember Jerious Norwood from such films as Showboating Against The Saints and Running Really Goddamn Fast. He's a player who has a proven track record of running forward and sometimes to the side at a high rate of speed, and when healthy he's an elusive change of pace back who is a pretty effective complement to Michael Turner. Unfortunately, he was neither healthy nor effective in 2009, something we can hopefully chalk up to injuries.
We'll get a chance to find that out sooner than later, because he's been cleared to return for organized team activities.
While OTAs sound like an opportunity for Thomas Dimitroff to stand before the Falcons and sing this little ditty, it's actually a glimpse of football activity starting May 25 in an otherwise barren wasteland between here and July. It's encouraging that Norwood is back on his feet and in good enough shape that he can (hopefully) run and cut.
What's less clear is his role in the year ahead. Ideally, he comes in to blow away defenses battered by Michael Turner, but the fact that Jason Snelling played pretty well last year while he was out means he's likely not going to be Turner's full-time backup any more. Instead, I could see the team using him as a situational player who may finally get an opportunity to catch a few passes out of the backfield. It's not like Michael Turner is suddenly going to become a favorite target, what with his hands that are made of hammers.
For his own sake, I hope Norwood comes back strong and fights his way back into a reasonably prominent role with the Falcons. If the team is serious about limiting Turner's carries—and they should be—they're going to need someone else to soak up those delicious carries. If Norwood's in good shape, it can only help the offense.