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Falcons 53 man roster projection and bubble watch for Week 3 of preseason

Who stays, who goes, and who is right on the bubble ahead of Saturday's game against the Dolphins.

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

If it seems like we've been talking about the roster a lot lately, that's because roster cuts are coming right up. Trying to figure out where everyone fits is one of the great challenges of the offseason for the coaching staff, but we can get in on the action with less stress.

I have made some changes to this week's edition of the 53 man roster projection. Mooney's impressing the coaching staff, making 59 yard passes and putting bone-jarring hits on people in a very limited number of snaps, so I'm nudging him to favorite status. Joplo Bartu's on as the last linebacker with Falcoholic favorite Marquis Spruill gone. And while I waffle on whether Dezmen Southward is going to make the team and get a year to develop or is going to be on another team, he's not here for a second consecutive week. I have Sean Renfree over Rex Grossman largely on the strength of wishful thinking.

Let's get to the projection.

QB Matt Ryan
QB Sean Renfree

FB Collin Mooney

RB Tevin Coleman
RB Devonta Freeman
RB Antone Smith

WR Julio Jones
WR Leonard Hankerson
WR Roddy White
WR Justin Hardy
WR Devin Hester
WR Eric Weems

TE Jacob Tamme
TE Tony Moeaki
TE Levine Toilolo

OT Jake Matthews
OT Ryan Schraeder
OT Tyler Polumbus
OT Jake Rodgers

OG James Stone
OG Chris Chester
Jon Asamoah

OC Joe Hawley
OC/OG Mike Person

DE Tyson Jackson
DE Adrian Clayborn
DE Malliciah Goodman
DE Kroy Biermann

DE Stansly Maponga

DT Ra'Shede Hageman
DT Paul Soliai
DT Jonathan Babineaux
DT Grady Jarrett

OLB Brooks Reed
OLB Justin Durant
OLB Vic Beasley Jr.
OLB O'Brien Schofield

MLB Paul Worrilow
MLB Allen Bradford
MLB Nate Stupar
LB Joplo Bartu

CB Desmond Trufant
CB Jalen Collins
CB Robert Alford
CB Phillip Adams
CB Kevin White

FS Ricardo Allen
FS Charles Godfrey

SS William Moore
SS Kemal Ishmael

Matt Bryant
Matt Bosher
LS Josh Harris

Falcons Roster Bubble Watch

We spent some time talking bubble players earlier this week, so I'll keep this pretty brief.

  • Dezmen Southward. Broken record, here, but Southward increasingly looks like a long shot to hang on to his roster spot. If he survives cuts, he's likely to be a developmental fifth cornerback for this year. Right now, I'd view his chances of making the team as less than a coin flip.
  • Lamar Holmes. Holmes still isn't back in action, and his roster spot is in jeopardy unless the coaching staff believes he'll A) be healthy for the start of the season and B) is better than Tyler Polumbus, Jake Rodgers, etc. I don't think the latter is a stretch, but the former might be.
  • Tyler Polumbus. He's been awful. A lack of viable alternatives may keep him on the roster, but don't count on it.
  • Tyler Starr. He's showing more on special teams and looks like a dramatically improved player, but may still be ticketed for the practice squad with Joplo Bartu, Allen Bradford, and Stansly Maponga all making cases.
  • Joplo Bartu. I don't know what to make of his chances. He's getting plenty of run in preseason and has been solid enough, so it may come down to numbers at linebacker.
  • Stansly Maponga. Two straight weeks of sacks should be enough to earn the coaching staff's attention, but with the team's crowded front seven situation, I'm listing him as on the bubble until the coaches make it official they're keeping him.
  • Terron Ward/Jerome Smith. I was tempted to leave Bartu off and put Smith on, because even though his yards per carry are anemic, he's looked like a well-rounded, useful power back. I'm just not there yet, though.
Your thoughts on the roster, as well as who is on the bubble?