When the Falcons trot out to the practice field tomorrow, as they are wont to trot, they will get to celebrate the return of a great many players. While none of those returns guarantee we’ll see these guys in preseason Week 2 against the Jets, that’s not exactly troubling.
Per the the Falcons’ William McFadden, the team will get back a number of guys who should be contributors in 2019, and will ramp up participation for the Jones’, namely Julio and Deion. The biggest name on the list is probably Calvin Ridley, but there are plenty of others.
Some of the other players returning from injury: Desmond Trufant, Duke Riley, Ra'Shede Hageman. Dan Quinn also said Julio and Deion Jones will start doing a bit more in practice. #Falcons— William McFadden (@willmcfadden) August 11, 2019
It goes without saying that only Riley and Hageman are likely to be exposed to any real playing time if they’re healthy enough to get on the field this week, given that Julio, Ridley, Debo, and Trufant are all essential starters. Hageman could use the time on the field to help him push for a roster spot after his brief suspension to start the year, while Riley needs it in a major way with the likes of Yurik Bethune, Jermaine Grace, and Del’Shawn Phillips shining in his absence.
With those returns, the only Falcon likely to have a major 2019 role who isn’t going to be returning to the practice field tomorrow is James Carpenter. As we’ve noted here and as Dan Quinn made clear over the weekend, his absence in turn gives Jamon Brown a real shot at winning the left guard job, an opportunity I hope he’s ready and able to take advantage of.
With the Falcons being so careful with their preseason snaps for starters, it’s not particularly likely we’ll see any of these guys outside of Riley, Hageman and Carpenter for more than a small handful of snaps until the season begins. With the way injuries ravaged the team a year ago, that’s just fine by me.