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Falcons reinstate retired DT Eddie Goldman

The veteran abruptly retired before the 2022 season, but it appears he may be back.

Detroit Lions v Chicago Bears Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Eddie Goldman was a well-received free agent signing for about two weeks last July, as he figured to bolster a Falcons defensive line that needed the help. Unfortunately for the Falcons, he retired later that month, and the Falcons wound up putting their defensive tackle group together with duct tape in 2022 after Vincent Taylor was hurt. We wished him well with his retirement, but it appears that wasn’t the end of the story.

Fast forward to March 2023 and it appears Goldman will return to the NFL. Per multiple reporters, including ESPN’s Mike Rothstein, Goldman has been reinstated from the reserve/retired list.

There are plenty of good questions to ask here, but the two that matter most are A) is he playing this year and B) is he playing for the Falcons? The first answer appears to be yes, otherwise it would not make much sense to bother reinstating him, and the second answer is a resounding maybe.

Under NFL rules, the Falcons have the rights to Goldman’s contract because he retired before it was over, given that he had signed a one-year pact covering the 2022 season. If Atlanta wants to have him on the team in 2023, they can do so, either with the contract they signed last July or a new one they work up. Otherwise, the team could cut or trade him, though one doubts any team would swap picks or players for Goldman.

If all goes well and Goldman does plan to play for the Falcons in 2023, it’s a nice, unexpected boost to their defensive tackle depth. Goldman will just be entering his age 29 season, and while he was coming off a down year in Chicago, he remains a talented player and one who just hopefully got some much-needed rest. At the absolute worst, he’s a really good fourth option in a group that also includes Grady Jarrett, David Onyemata, and Ta’Quon Graham, and if he returns to form he can be starting-caliber addition to the rotation. That would give the Falcons their strongest defensive line group on the interior in a while.

We’ll soon find out what Goldman’s future holds, but for now, welcome him back to the NFL and we’ll hopefully see him playing for Atlanta in 2023.