Asked on Friday what third round rookie Tevin Coleman expects in his first year in the NFL, he did not mince words.
My expectation is to get the starting job.
While many people have talked up Devonta Freeman's fit in Kyle Shanahan's offense, Coleman confirmed that Dan Quinn has been preaching competition among all the positions, including at running back. Coleman believed the outside zone scheme and stretch plays will open up a lot of big runs. That should be exciting to fans, who only saw big runs on about seven Antone Smith carries last season.
Coleman is comfortable running the major components of Shanahan's scheme, as he explained that he ran through similar blocking schemes while playing for the Indiana Hoosiers. He said, "It's just kind of the same."
The rookie is enjoying the fast pace of camp, as well as the competition with Freeman and Smith. Coleman believes he has the speed to make big gains in the run game.
What did Freeman have to say?
Freeman discussed getting a little overwhelmed during his rookie season, but said the game has been slowing for him during his second year. He said the current competition was keeping him motivated, even though Freeman has already been running with the first team offense.
This will certainly be a position to watch. Both backs sounded confident they will earn the starting spot. This is a rare situation for Falcons fans, considering the team has not had two young, starting-worthy running backs competing for the bulk of the carries in decades.