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Is Kroy Biermann on Track for 2014 Return?

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Fact: Kroy Biermann once bowled a perfect game ... with a marble.

Dale Zanine-US PRESSWIRE

A Falcons defense without Kroy Biermann lacks a certain something. It starts with "pass" and ends with "rush" ... or it doesn't, either way.

Biermann's role this season was heavily hyped during the off/preseason. He was going to be a hybrid linebacker/defensive end, Mike Nolan's secret weapon. Then the week 2 achilles injury happened, and Biermann's been on injured reserve ever since. Now Biermann has nothing but positive things to say about his rehab.

“Things are moving along well. I couldn’t be happier with the progress,” Biermann told GoGriz.com. “The coaching staff and the organization are great. I’m excited to continue my progress and be ready for next year.”

I'm sure they're being very calculated about Biermann's rehab, but make no mistake, he's still got a long way to go. At this stage, of course, he's going to say he's on track. Why wouldn't he? But with an average rehab time of 7-11 months, Biermann won't be 100 percent until April at the earliest. Realistically, he may not even be ready for training camp.

Then, when he does come back, it's not a foregone conclusion Biermann will be the same player. It's one thing to run around the field, tackling opponents as necessary. it's something else entirely to dig in and attempt to push past a 315 pound left tackle. In any case, 2014 is the last year of his current contract. The Falcons will see what he can do and go from there. I'm cautiously optimistic, but the Falcons undoubtedly need to have a plan B in place. Your thoughts?