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Will Corey Peters Return After The Bye?

The run-stopping defensive tackle has missed the entire season thus far, but is eligible to come off of PUP soon.

Kevin C. Cox - Getty Images

One would have to be unusually optimistic to see the Falcon run defense this season and not wonder when Corey Peters is getting back.

Injured well before the season begun, Peters wound up starting the year on the Physically Unable to Perform list (PUP), which he's eligible to come off of following the Falcons' Week 7 bye. It's easy to see why the Falcons would be excited about this. They're in the bottom quarter of the league in stopping the run, and Peters has been the team's best run-stopping tackle each of the last two seasons. He can't help but improve the team's ability to stop the ground game, and he's a quality-enough pass rusher that he should help out on that front. Getting him back would be a boost all the way around.

The question is whether that's going to happen, obviously. Peters has indicated in the past that he's hoping to be ready to go after the bye, but the most recent word from Mike Smith is that he's still being evaluated. That's a reasonable course of action and one that's vague enough to match up with Smitty's usual press skulduggery, but it doesn't tell us what we all want to know.

So here's a bold Falcoholic prediction: He'll be back in action against the Eagles. The Falcons could use that 7-0 record to virtually pave their way to a playoff spot and quiet some of the critics who say they haven't beat teams worth a damn, and the Eagles have enough (sloppy, fumble-prone) offensive weapons that they'll need all hands on deck. I think the Falcons will activate Peters, give him at least a dozen or so snaps and let him be the disruptive force he so often is.

What do you think?