Already down Corey Peters, the Atlanta Falcons could ill afford to lose another defensive tackle. Unfortunately for the team, they did.
Jonathan Babineaux is now down for three-to-five weeks. That means he will miss the Eagles, Buccaneers and Seahawks games, and may miss tilts against the Packers, Panthers and potentially even the Lions. There are some very good teams in that stretch, and the Falcons are going to badly miss their best defensive tackle.
All we can do is hope he recovers quickly and move ahead. So what will the Falcons do now, sans Babs?
My guess is that they stand pat, at least toward the top of the depth chart. Corey Peters should be coming back by Week 3 at the latest, and Peria Jerry is already basically starting. Vance Walker is a fantastic reserve and someone who should hold up fine to a heavy rotation.
The only real question mark is Carlton Powell, who has virtually no game action under his belt. The coaching staff liked him enough to keep him around ahead of Trey Lewis, but with Babineaux and maybe Peters out over the next week or so, the team may want someone with more game experience to put on the tail end of the defensive tackle rotation.
Given the team's love of in-season continuity, I'm still willing to bet that Powell stays.
So that leaves the Falcons starting Peters and Jerry, with Walker and maybe Powell rotating in. I can live with that, though it's going to hamstring the team's pass rush to some degree. We'll have a better idea tomorrow if the Falcons will even have Peters for Sunday's game. If they don't, yeah, they'll probably have to sign a guy.