Are you entirely done with preseason Falcons football yet? It’s been quite the slog, but we’re just one game away from the official start of the 2019 NFL season. Get caught up with all of the Falcons news with today’s edition of Falcoholinks.
Preseason Week 3 notes and narratives
They did it, ya’ll. The Falcons have lost their 12th consecutive preseason game on Thursday, falling to Washington 19-7. It’s safe to say that we’re all pretty over the preseason at this point, but thankfully we’ve got one more game to go! Will the streak run to 13? Let’s hope not.
But preseason or not, the piping hot takes continue to flow here at The Falcoholic, and while the game was packed to the gills with awful football, the defense (especially the linebackers and defensive line) looked extremely good.
Very encouraging signs on that side of the ball.
Special teams sirens
The canaries are croaking in the coal mine of the Atlanta Falcons’ special teams unit — from the return game to the kicking game. Giorgio Tavecchio once again missed a field goal in the Falcons’ game against Washington, leading to the team bringing in former Georgia Bulldog Blair Walsh. Blair Walsh, of course, is known for missing a couple of high leverage kicks, which eventually led to his unemployment in 2018.
Tavecchio and Walsh’s performances this week could very well be a major determinant as to who will ultimately kick field goals for the Falcons, as DQ has framed the situation as an “open competition.”
#Falcons coach Dan Quinn called it an "open competition" for the kicker job.— D. Orlando Ledbetter (@DOrlandoAJC) August 25, 2019
Matt Bryant is still out there, and one of our writers is still emphatic that Atlanta bring him in.
The return game has also not inspired much confidence so far, as both Olamide Zaccheaus and Marcus Green muffed punts. This has vaulted free agent signing Kenjon Barner to the top of the pack to win the job.
New coordinator Ben Kotwica came to Atlanta to add new dynamism to the special teams unit, but so far it’s mostly been alarm bells.
Jaeden Graham, Kaleb McGary updates
One of the young Falcons who has looked awfully impressive in the preseason is undrafted tight end Jaeden Graham, who has been making a very convincing case to earn a spot on the roster. He’s looked every bit capable of filling that role, but unfortunately left Thursday’s game with a knee injury and did not return.
During press availability yesterday, Dan Quinn said that Graham will be limited in practice this week, which is an encouraging sign.
Jaeden Graham will practice in a limited capacity this week.— William McFadden (@willmcfadden) August 25, 2019
Also in positive injury news, Falcons’ first-round tackle Kaleb McGary will practice in full this week as he returns from a cardiac ablation procedure.
Huge news for the #Falcons their first-round pick will get some reps in practice before the season starts. https://t.co/c8FKM5Rbea— William McFadden (@willmcfadden) August 25, 2019
Jacksonville on the docket
The Falcons’ final (FINALLY) preseason game takes place this Thursday night, as they head to Jacksonville to take on the Blake Bortles-less Jaguars. This is the final opportunity for some guys to cement their spot on the roster, and there’s a few specific players in mind that we’d like to see more of in the preseason finale.