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Devonta Freeman won’t return from injured reserve in meaningless finish to 2018

The team is making the right decision even if the running back is fully healthy.

Carolina Panthers v Atlanta Falcons Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images

Devonta Freeman’s 2018 season has been cut short multiple times by injury. Dan Quinn has recently started talking up Freeman’s potential return for the final few games of 2018, with fans asking, “but why?”

Falcons waved goodbye to their playoff hopes weeks ago, if not longer. Why bring back a veteran running back that you want fully healthy next season? Whether injury or common sense, the Falcons made the right decision.

The Falcons found out how much they need a healthy Freeman this season. Atlanta has been near the bottom of the league in nearly every rushing metric. While Tevin Coleman is good for a big play every now and then, he’s far from a chain mover that can keep the pressure off of Matt Ryan.

Freeman finishes the season 68 rushing yards and 23 receiving yards. He turns 27 in March and should be well served by starting healthy during the offseason. The team needs to either hope he stays healthy in 2019 or draft a potential backup.