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Kaleb McGary activated off of COVID-19 list

The team’s presumed starter at right tackle returns after a short stay on the COVID-19 list.

Carolina Panthers v Atlanta Falcons Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

The Atlanta Falcons were short on starting right tackle Kaleb McGary during Sunday’s road win over the Miami Dolphins. His absence was not readily apparent after Jason Spriggs, one of the team’s late offseason additions, shook off some rust. More generally, the offensive line appears to be beyond fixing after Week 1 against the Philadelphia Eagles. Now that offensive line is keeping Matt Ryan clean.

Thanks to the team’s 100% vaccinated milestone, we knew McGary’s absence should be closer to days than weeks. McGary must have completed multiple negative tests and is ready to return to the team.

Nearly midway through the season, it is unclear if McGary is the definite starter or if he is on a short leash. After all, his progress has been frustratingly slow, and Terry Fontenot was not the one who traded up for McGary. That is not to say that McGarry is not an asset, but whether or not he goes back into the starting lineup, or keeps the job once Matt Gono returns, is still not certain.

Based on his salary and performance, McGary will need to return to the starting lineup and show a reason for the Falcons to keep him around in 2022.