While the team is still without top receiver Calvin Ridley, the rest of the Atlanta offense appears ready to go at home when they host the Buccaneers on Sunday in Atlanta. Let’s take stock of where both teams are heading into this week 13 matchup.
Right now, the Falcons only have one player eliminated from playing on Sunday: DL Jonathan Bullard, who will miss the game due to an ankle injury. The only other names on the list - LB Deion Jones and CB Kendall Sheffield - were both full participants on their last practice and are expected to play on Sunday.
The Buccaneers have a much longer list with a notable absence on defense. Safety Jordan Whitehead has been ruled out as has WR Jaelon Darden. Of course, this is on top of WR Antonio Brown and S Mike Edwards being suspended for 3 games due to their violations of the NFL’s COVID protocols. On top of it all, CB Jamel Dean, LB Devin White and OG Ali Marpet are all listed as questionable going into the game, even though they were full participants on Friday.
Somehow, the Falcons have found a way to stay relevant in December while also elevating themselves to second in the NFC South, right behind the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. This is clearly influenced by how bad both the Carolina Panthers and New Orleans Saints have been recently, but Atlanta could be on the move backwards depending on the outcome of this game.