The Falcons' defensive line is probably a year away from being elite. Given another draft and free agency period, Thomas Dimitroff and company could arguably turn a perennial weakness into a strength.
But for now, the Falcons must make do with what they have. If everyone's healthy, what they have isn't all that bad. That said, the return of Corey Peters would sure help. Per Vaughn McClure, he might not be ready to go by Sunday's game against the Saints.
"We're not set on what we're going to do with Corey,'' Smith said. "Corey is going to have really his second padded practice on Wednesday. But he's done everything that we've asked. And we'll make a determination on Wednesday after he's had a really full, full workload this week.''
Likely coachspeak aside, you have to be encouraged by his presence on the practice field. It's a start. It's a step in the right direction. If all goes according to plan, he will ease in and contribute.