The Falcons unfortunately had to place Caleb Huntley on injured reserve after the talented second-year back was hurt Sunday against the Saints, and he’ll miss the rest of the season as a result. That’s a big blow to a backfield that thankfully is still plenty talented, but we’re hopeful we’ll see Huntley next year in Atlanta, running into and through defenders at high speed once again.
With the open roster spot, the Falcons have decided to add some potential pass rushing help, and the player in question is actually a name that might be familiar to big-time draft enthusiasts. Per the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the team has signed linebacker David Anenih off the Steelers practice squad.
If the name rings a bell, it might be because Kevin Knight interviewed Anenih in the run-up to the 2022 NFL Draft. The Falcons attended the Houston Pro Day and appeared to have interest in Anenih, an outside linebacker with some intriguing power and length, though he ultimately went undrafted and spent time with the Titans before joining the Steelers practice squad. While they didn’t land him initially, Atlanta gets a chance to see how Anenih fits anyways. As he told The Falcoholic this past spring, Anenih had a good conversation with outside linebackers coach Ted Monachino, who will be his position coach with the Falcons.
David Anenih: It was a good experience for me. I met [Ted Monachino] right before the Pro Day started. We did some drills—that went well, I showed that I could move around in space, was really fluid. After the Pro Day was over, we talked for about 30-40 minutes about the Falcons, the defense, and what I could potentially bring to the table.
Atlanta will get a look at him over the final three games of the season to see if he might be a candidate to compete for a reserve role next summer, and given their dearth of pass rushing help, it’s a worthwhile roll of the dice for a player they clearly liked back in the spring. If he does get snaps, it’ll likely be at the expense of Lorenzo Carter and Adetokunbo Ogundeji, with rookie DeAngelo Malone also in line to get at least a slightly longer look against Baltimore, Arizona, and Tampa Bay.
We’ll see if Anenih can make an impression over the final weeks. Give him a warm welcome and wish Huntley well on his recovery, if you would.