The Falcons are finally facing a division rival at home as they host the Carolina Panthers in the battle of I-85. These two teams are on different trajectories right now, but their records are close enough to make this game matter, even at this point in the season. The Panthers undoubtedly want to end their 4 losing streak while the Falcons want to get above .500 for the first time since 2017. Here’s how things look as we go into this important division matchup.
The update for the Falcons is pretty simple: everyone on the 53-man roster is ready to go. The only names on the injury list this week were cornerbacks A.J. Terrell and Avery Williams and both guys finished the week as full participants. The team obviously has several important players on injured reserve or the PUP list (Dante Fowler in particular), but they’re in pretty good shape overall.
The Panthers, on the other hand, are going into this game with some guys ruled out and some key defensive players listed as questionable. Defensive End Darryl Johnson (hamstring) and WR Terrace Marshall Jr. (concussion) have already been ruled out. Cornerback C.J. Henderson and linebacker Shaq Thompson are listed as questionable, though coach Matt Rhule has said Thompson would play with limited snaps. Of course, the most notable injury for the Panthers is Christian McCaffrey, who will be on IR for at least one more week.
The Falcons have spent the entire year at the bottom of the NFC South until this past week. When the Panthers dropped to 3-4, they took over the spot at the bottom of the division. The Falcons hope to keep them there with a win on Sunday.