The Falcons are typically good about holding back guys in the preseason that don’t need a lot of snaps, and there are two guys in 2018 that stand out who could sit out a bit.
Falcons DE Takkarist McKinley is, at the moment, nursing a shoulder bruise, and LG Andy Levitre is continuing to ease back into the routine of things after tearing his tricep in December.
Don’t expect the Falcons to do a whole lot of anything with either player in August.
Preseason injuries smack you in the face like day-old fish. They just flat-out stink, and are often so preventable if a guy is just given less snaps. Freak accidents happen, but you particularly don’t want a guy aggravating an existing ailment during pointless football.
McKinley has already done that in camp, which is why the team is holding him out a bit until his bruise heals. Even then, you have to think that, even though he’s a younger player, the team has confidence in his ability to let it rip when it counts. Takk will be Takk no matter what, so it’s not like missing out on some August football is going to change that.
Levitre is also one you have to be specifically cautious with. Time heals all wounds, and it’s probably not going to do the veteran guard much harm in sitting out a bit in August and only taking limited snaps. Ben Garland can fill in there, and give the Falcons what they need in terms of an overall evaluation of how the unit is clicking early.
Our Kevin Knight spoke to how important Levitre may well end up being to the offense this season, and you do not want to risk anything with his health if you don’t have to. He’s probably going to get a little time in that dress rehearsal game, but will he get much else?
My gut says we won’t see much of either player until later in August. They’ll both get some third preseason game snaps, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see that be the bulk of it. The Falcons don’t need either player super active right now. They’re entrenched starters who need to spend the month getting healthy and ready for the Eagles.
So, if you don’t see much of Levitre or McKinley when the preseason gets underway, here’s why.