Former first-round bust Takkarist McKinley is perhaps most famous his line “fine me later” after swearing during the NFL draft. A fun moment showing a young player full of enthusiasm, what has followed are plenty of lows, injuries, and semi-consistent complaints and criticisms from his social media accounts.
In the past, McKinley has liked posts critical of teammates, coaches, the front office, and fans suggesting McKinley should join their team (there have not been many of those tweets recently). He then outright and criticized the team for failing to trade him.
This is tough for interim head coach Raheem Morris, who did not pick McKinley and likely does not have the authority to cut the headache-causing defensive end. On a similar note, cutting McKinley means no compensatory pick for the Falcons, however, his value in free agency remains hard to gauge.
There were only a few good options for Morris: fines, suspensions, or benchings. Per Jason Butt of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Morris has gone with fining the player with 1.0 sacks and 5.0 tackles at the halfway mark of the season.
McKinley could also be benched, but he has to get healthy first. He is already ruled out for Sunday’s game against the Denver Broncos. It is fair to wonder if McKinley may end up a healthy scratch due to his impact being limited strictly to off the field. Regardless, his time in Atlanta is running out.