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Chris Mortensen: Atlanta Falcons want rookie RB Tevin Coleman to get over "rookie wall"

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Fact: Tevin Coleman invented neon bowling

Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Atlanta Falcons running back Tevin Coleman hasn't met expectations this season. After the rookie was drafted, Falcons fans rejoiced, believing he would immediately thrive in Kyle Shanahan's zone blocking scheme. But after a preseason war of words and a training camp good enough to earn him the starting gig, Coleman has floundered. An ill-timed rib injury opened the door for second year running back Devonta Freeman, who never looked back.

Aside from a bad case of fumbilitis, Coleman has looked tentative at times. He's definitely had his moments, and I've been impressed with him in pass protection, a skill first year players frequently lack. But Pro Football Focus ranks him 67th of 68 running backs they've graded this season. Doesn't exactly inspire confidence, even against the Minnesota Vikings' 16th ranked rush defense. The Falcons front office is apparently looking for him to turn the corner.

Look, Coleman gets a pass on some stuff because he is a rookie. But at some point, the team is absolutely justified in criticizing his progress. Mortensen's tweet seemingly suggests that they're looking for something more. He's not just making a logical assertion; their frustration is real. Turnovers significantly impair a team's ability to win, and Coleman knows that. Now he just needs to hold onto the football, run confidently, and help his team win.

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