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Falcons may kick off OTAs without first round pick Vic Beasley

It's not ideal, but it'll only be a concern if this drags on for a while.

Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

UPDATE: Beasley tells ESPN's Vaughn McClure he plans to be there. Great news.

The Falcons have signed every rookie except for Vic Beasley, which brings us to an unpleasant little fact: Vic Beasley may not be at OTAs today.

Organized team activites are non-contact practices, and while it's ideal to have every player available, it's not the end of the world if Beasley and a handful of others aren't there. That said, a rookie first round pick who will be expected to step right into starter's snaps needs all the practice and time with the coaching staff he can possibly get. Beasley is no exception there, and every minute other players get in front of a coaching staff is another minute he'll need to make up in a competition later on.

None of us want the Falcons to kick this thing off without Beasley, who is going to be a core piece of the defense in 2015 and hopefully for years to come. Contract talks aren't always cut and dry, even when there's very little in the way of money to negotiate, and so it's not that frightening to see this one drag on. Both sides have plenty of incentive to get this done before it becomes an ugly distraction over the summer, and the NFL's draft slotting structure means the terms the two sides are haggling over must by necessity be cracks rather than crevasses.

Let's hope Beasley signs today and his entire post is moot in just a few short hours. Either way, though, expect something to get done well before mandatory minicamp in mid-June, and expect Beasley to be a force for good for this Falcons team sooner rather than later.