Last year, Cornell Armstrong played a major role for the Falcons down the stretch in a cornerback group struggling to find answers for injuries and...well, struggling players. Armstrong was a starter for the last month or so of the season, taking over for Darren Hall, and figured to compete for a roster spot again this summer.
Like Darren Hall, Armstrong likely would’ve come up short in that quest, what with the additions of Jeff Okudah, Mike Hughes, Tre Flowers, and others. Unlike Hall, he didn’t even get a chance to really compete past a certain point, as an injury ensured he never appeared in a preseason game.
That injury led to him being placed on injured reserve, but now he’s once again free to sign with a team when he’s healthy. The Falcons released him with an injury settlement yesterday, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s D. Orlando Ledbetter.
Armstrong had the unenviable task of needing to step in against Cincinnati last year owing to injuries at corner, where he struggled but showed Dean Pees and company enough fight to clearly impress them. Armstrong played major roles against the Panthers and Chargers before getting 88%, 80%, and 100% of the defensive snaps over the final three weeks. He finished the season having allowed 55.8% of his passes to be completed, per Pro Football Reference, for 310 yards for 12.9 yards per reception and a pair of touchdowns.
Atlanta heads into Week 1 with A.J. Terrell, Tre Flowers, and Dee Alford listed as starters, with rookie Clark Phillips and versatile veteran Mike Hughes set to back them up. It would not be surprised to see Natrone Brooks flexed from the practice squad this week to provide further depth.
Armstrong should be able to at least land on a practice squad once he’s healthy, so we’ll see where he ends up next. We wish him well wherever he goes.