The dream for every NFL team is making it through training camp without injuries piling up, but that's an impossible dream. In early August, the Atlanta Falcons are already losing players.
On Thursday, the team announced they've placed offensive lineman Ethan Greenidge on injured reserve, taking a versatile reserve out of the mix. They also waived three players with an injury designation, including tight end/quarterback Feleipe Franks, wide receiver Chris Blair, and pass rusher Ikenna Enechukwu.
We have made the following roster moves:— Atlanta Falcons (@AtlantaFalcons) August 3, 2023
- Waived/injured Ikenna Enechukwu, Feleipe Franks and Chris Blair
- Placed Ethan Greenidge on IR pic.twitter.com/WvA2xzk2ZI
The most familiar name here will be Franks. A certified Arthur Smith crush, the college quarterback made the switch to tight end last year and was touted as a versatile, athletic reserve who could potentially play the kind of varied role we saw Taysom Hill thrive in with the hated Saints. Those hopes for Atlanta aren't over, as Franks is reportedly just hitting injured reserve and is expected to be out about three months.
The #Falcons waived QB/TE Feleipe Franks with an injury designation and he’ll revert to IR after clearing waivers.— Jordan Schultz (@Schultz_Report) August 3, 2023
Source says Franks tore a tendon in his foot and will be out about three months. HC Arthur Smith and Atlanta’s offensive staff have high hopes for him. pic.twitter.com/CIybDOIDHo
Both Greenidge and Enechukwu were injured late in Wednesday’s practice, with the former being carted off with the rest of the team kneeling. We haven’t received any specific information on the injuries at this time, though Arthur Smith mentioned that Greenidge would undergo an MRI. Chris Blair was notably absent from Wednesday’s practice.
Greenidge, a 2019 UDFA offensive lineman out of Villanova, spent the 2019-2022 seasons with the New Orleans Saints. He was active for 15 games during the 2020 season, came back in 2021, and was placed on IR for the entirety of the 2022 season. He was called up to second-team left guard after the injury to Matt Hennessy and subsequent elevation of rookie Matthew Bergeron to the starting lineup.
Enechukwu, who joined the team as a UDFA following this year’s draft, spent his college career as an edge rusher at Rice. The Falcons really liked him coming out of college, as the team gave him a $100K signing bonus. If he clears waivers, I suspect he’s someone who will eventually be brought back on the practice squad.
Blair joined the Green Bay Packers as a UDFA wide receiver out of Alcorn State in 2021, spending the season on the practice squad. He was waived by the Packers prior to the 2022 season. Atlanta added him to the 90-man roster after a successful tryout during minicamp back in June.
Injuries are an unfortunate part of every training camp and NFL season. We’ll hope for a speedy recovery for all of these guys and an eventual return to the field for the Falcons. With Atlanta hosting a number of players for visits earlier in the week, it’s likely we’ll see some of these players—and possibly other veterans—added to the roster in short order.
#Falcons reportedly worked out:— Kevin Knight (@FalcoholicKevin) July 31, 2023
TE John Lovett (Princeton 21)
RB Charles McClelland (Cincinnati 23)
WR Mathew Sexton (Eastern Michigan 19)
RB Aaron Shampklin (Harvard 22)
WR Keytaon Thompson (Virginia 23)
QB Jarrett Guarantano (Tennessee 22)
WR Justin Hall (Ball State 22)