Somehow, it’s December and a matchup of two 5-7 teams has potential playoff implications. The absurd mediocrity of most NFC teams is keeping the Falcons and Panthers in the thick of the playoff race, giving this game more weight than it would have in a normal-ish NFL season. This is the last update for the health status of both teams and their division standing heading into Sunday.
While the Falcons haven’t completely ruled out any players for the game on Sunday, they will go into the contest with two guys listed as questionable. Safety Richie Grant - who has seen his playing time increase as the season has progressed - is dealing with an ankle injury. Fellow rookie linebacker Adetokunbo Ogundeji is also dealing with an ankle injury. It looks like defensive lineman Jonathan Bullard (ankle) will finally be ready to play again while starting CB Fabian Moreau is also good to go.
As for the kitty cats, their very bad offensive line is losing yet another starter for this game. Starting offensive guard Michael Jordan has already been ruled out as has backup offensive guard John Miller. Whether or not the Falcons can take advantage of this OL is another question altogether, but the opportunity should be there.
With Carolina and Atlanta both at 5-7, they are firmly entrenched in the middle of the NFC’s mediocrity and the middle of their division. The Panthers are currently in second since they beat the Falcons in their first matchup. Of course, this also means the Saints are sitting alone at the bottom of the division, though these three teams could shuffle spots around this weekend.