With training camp looming, there are plenty of questions about the NFL’s preparedness to for the coming season. We take a look at the latest news on that front, as well as some offseason series in today’s edition of Falcoholinks.
Preparation and a pandemic season
As training camp approaches, players are taking to Twitter to voice their concerns about the NFL’s lack of clear safety protocols and preparation to hold a season during a pandemic. You may have noticed the hashtag ‘#WeWantToPlay’ circulating on social media, as some of the league’s top stars publicly take issue with the NFL’s lack of planning to keep players safe in 2020.
Even with months to put the proper parameters in place, the NFL is trudging ahead with training camp and a season that puts all the risk on players.
The biggest headlines so far regarding the NFL’s plans involve changes to the preseason slate and a potential adjustment to the injured reserve system.
Regardless of the changes still to come, it goes without saying that this will be a very, very different season.
Player profiles: Backs
Ito Smith’s second NFL season ended with a serious neck injury, and while he seems confident in his health heading into 2020, there are still legitimate concerns after the frightening end to his second pro campaign.
If healthy, Ito could prove to be the best back behind Todd Gurley.
This is where Brian Hill comes in. Hill has a legitimate shot to earn the primary backup spot this season.
The Falcons will turn to Keith Smith in fullback duties, where’s he’s been an above-average lead blocker and strong special teams player since joining the team in 2019.
Andre Rison’s record
Julio Jones makes all the headlines when it comes to Atlanta Falcons receiving records — he just continues to set new marks for himself, and for the franchise. But Andre Rison’s touchdown bonanza in 1993 is likely to withstand the test of time in the Falcons’ record books.
A conversation with Reggie Kelly
The Falcoholic’s Evan Birchfield has been putting in solid work, getting to know some of the Falcons rookies and catching up with players from the past. He recently had a chat with former Falcons tight end Reggie Kelly, and they discussed his Atlanta career and his move into the food industry.