Atlanta Falcons


What Dan Quinn had to say after Day 2 of training camp

Opening statement: “Before we get rolling today, I do want to recognize some first responders here including the APD and members of the fire department. A number of those people, especially in the fire department, were involved in the incident on I-85. We are glad to have those men and women here today. What jumped out to me at practice today was really the speed again. We put them in a lot...



Falcons should be thankful Freeman keeping negotiations a non-story

Falcons should be thankful Freeman keeping negotiations a non-story

Falcons running back Devonta Freeman is surrounded by white defensive jerseys as he hits a hole for yardage on the first day of team practice at training camp in Flowery Branch. (Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com) Devonta Freeman’s next contract is a big deal for the Falcons because it will impact what the team can do in future negotiations with other veteran players...
LEADOFF: Roof closes as field turns green at Mercedes-Benz Stadium 

LEADOFF: Roof closes as field turns green at Mercedes-Benz Stadium 

Here’s the latest on Mercedes-Benz Stadium, which hosts its first event in 29 days: The roof is closed. The floor is turning green.  Up top, the retractable roof has been slowly moved from the open position to the closed position over the past couple of days -- “construction move 4,” it was called. And about 340 feet below, installation of the green artificial-turf playing...
Fans want Falcons to ‘show Freeman the money’

Fans want Falcons to ‘show Freeman the money’

Falcons running back Devonta Freeman breaks away from Saints defenders for a 75-yard touchdown run to take a 14-3 lead during the first quarter Sunday, Jan. 1, 2017, at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. (ccompton@ajc.com/ccompton@ajc.com) FLOWERY BRANCH — In a poll, we asked the fans how much should the Falcons pay running back Devonta Freeman, who’s earned a contract extension...
5 things to know about the Falcons on Friday 

5 things to know about the Falcons on Friday 

Here are five thing to know about the Falcons on Friday: 1. Open practice. Today’s practice is open to the public. The gates open at 8:30 a.m. The practice starts at 9:30 a.m. The practice was over at 11:15 a.m. on Thursday.  2. Garland opened with first team. In the all in important right guard battle, Ben Garland worked with the first-team on Thursday. 3. Sarkisian to speak. Falcons...
What Dan Quinn had to say on the first day of training camp 

What Dan Quinn had to say on the first day of training camp 

Here’s what Falcons coach Dan Quinn had to say after the first practice of training camp on Thursday:  Opening Statement: “It feels good to be back on the field with the team. Right away I can sense the work they put in over the summer, and I’m not surprised they put that work in. As we got back into our team stuff, we did a good bit of move the ball today just as a competition...
Ex-Falcon Wheeler signs with Cardinals 

Ex-Falcon Wheeler signs with Cardinals 

Former Falcons and Georgia Tech standout Philip Wheeler signed a one-year deal with the Arizona Cardinals on Thursday. Wheeler, 32, played the past two seasons with the Falcons as a reserve linebacker. He played in all 16 regular-season games and made four starts. He played in all three playoff games, including Super Bowl LI. Wheeler, a Columbus native, has played in 133 games, with 66 starts in nine...
Morten Andersen’s road from Denmark to Canton 

Morten Andersen’s road from Denmark to Canton 

Morten Andersen’s maniacal approach to the craft of kicking a football helped to land him a coveted spot among the greats in Canton, Ohio.  Andersen, whose game-winning field goal helped to the send the Falcons to their first Super Bowl appearance in 1999, is set to be enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame at 6 p.m. Saturday. He’s ready for his gold jacket. For the 25 seasons...
Falcons sign guard Larson Graham 

Falcons sign guard Larson Graham 

The Falcons signed guard Larson Graham, a rookie from Duquesne, on Thursday. Graham, who’s 6-foot-5 and 291 pounds, played offensive tackle at Duquesne. The move puts the Falcons’ roster at 90. They have room to add one more player because they have an International player exemption for former English Rugby player Alex Gray, who’s working with the tight ends.  
Poe likes the ‘weight clause’ in his contract 

Poe likes the ‘weight clause’ in his contract 

 Before he signed with the Falcons, Dontari Poe never had a weight clause in his contract. But after collecting a $125,00 bonus for coming into camp under 330 pounds, Poe is just fine. “No, first one,” Poe said when asked if he ever had a weight clause.  Did he make the weight? “Oh yeah,” Poe said. “(The weight clause) was cool with me.” Poe signed an...
Trufant says injury, missing Super Bowl made him ‘stronger, wiser’

Trufant says injury, missing Super Bowl made him ‘stronger, wiser’

Falcons cornerback Desmond Trufant gears up for the first day of practice at training camp Thursday in Flowery Branch. (Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com) FLOWERY BRANCH – A blur of what-ifs followed the ending to the Falcons’ season last year. But one the biggest what-ifs rarely is talked about. He was a player. He made it to the Super Bowl … but never...
Video: Quinn on McKinley and Julio Jones 

Video: Quinn on McKinley and Julio Jones 

Falcons head coach Dan Quinn answers questions about rookie defensive end Takkarist McKinley and wide receiver Julio Jones after reviewing the first day of practice.
Quinn on Jones: ‘He felt good on most of his cuts’

Quinn on Jones: ‘He felt good on most of his cuts’

Two-time Falcons All-Pro wide receiver Julio Jones, who’s recovering from offseason foot surgery, apparently is working through some issues with his surgically repaired foot although he looked fine in pass-catching drills during the first practice of training camp Thursday. Jones was jumping to make some catches and didn’t appear to have any problems with his foot after landing. ...
McKinley impressive in drills

McKinley impressive in drills

Falcons defensive end Takkarist McKinley was one of the first players on the field for the opening practice of training camp Thursday. He went off to the side, alone, and swung his left arm in a big looping motion and then his surgically repaired right shoulder and arm. Everything felt good, and he nodded his head. He was ready to start his professional NFL career.   “I’m going...
Garland opens training camp with first-team offense

Garland opens training camp with first-team offense

When the Falcons went offense against defense in passing drills Thursday, Ben Garland was working at right guard with the first unit, and Wes Schweitzer with the second unit.  Rookie Sean Harlow, a fourth-round draft choice out of Oregon State, drew snaps with the second unit at left guard. “Ben was the one that started the whole thing off,” Falcons coach Dan Quinn said. “Wes...
Video: D. Led’s early takes on first practice 

Video: D. Led’s early takes on first practice 

Here some observations from the early portion of the Falcons’ first practice on Thursday: 1. Julio Jones looked very comfortable moving around and making catches. 2. Running back Devonta Freeman needed some extra stretching from the training staff.  3. First-round draft pick Takkarist McKinley, who’s coming back from shoulder surgery, appeared powerful while working through the individual...
Falcons off and running as training camp opens

Falcons off and running as training camp opens

The Atlanta Falcons are back in the business of football, and as training camp opened Thursday morning, it was clear that fans are excited about a team that went to the Super Bowl after the 2016 season. More than 1,000 fans are at the first practice, in which players are not wearing pads. They’ll take on full armor for Saturday morning’s session. Here’s a look-in at what’s...
Jones, McKinley taking part in drills 

Jones, McKinley taking part in drills 

Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones and defensive end Takkarist McKinley are participating in drills in the first practice of training camp Thursday. Jones, who’s coming back from offseason foot surgery, made a couple of nice catches while jumping up. He didn’t appear to be bothered on the landing. McKinley, who warmed by twirling his arm and surgically repaired shoulder, was hitting the...
Falcons to practice in pads on Saturday 

Falcons to practice in pads on Saturday 

The defending NFC champion Atlanta Falcons are set to hold their first practice Thursday. Falcons coach Dan Quinn said the first padded practice -- with some live hitting -- will be held Saturday. He revealed the news during an appearance on the team’s flagship radio station, 92.9 The Game. 
D. Led’s 3 longshots to make the Falcons’ 53-man roster

D. Led’s 3 longshots to make the Falcons’ 53-man roster

A person passes a large sign that reads “Rise Up” before the ninth annual “Kia Motors Friday Night Lights” at Grayson High School, Friday, August 5, 2016, in Loganville, Ga. BRANDEN CAMP/SPECIAL FLOWERY BRANCH – In years past I’ve had trouble picking longshots to watch. My guys would miss a meeting and be the first player to get cut. But this year...
Falcons’ Freeman underpaid but determining his value isn’t easy

Falcons’ Freeman underpaid but determining his value isn’t easy

Falcons running back Devonta Freeman reported to training camp and is in negotiations for a contract extension. (Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com) FLOWERY BRANCH — Devonta Freeman, who’s arguably the most underpaid player in the NFL today, made the right decision to report on time to Falcons’ training camp. It reaffirmed his intention to minimize the potential distraction...
Tale of the tape: Garland vs. Schweitzer

Tale of the tape: Garland vs. Schweitzer

Some are waiting for McGregor vs. Mayweather, but in Falcons’ training camp, the big battle will be between Ben Garland and Wes Schweitzer for the starting right guard position with the retirement of Chris Chester. The battle starts today when the Falcons take the field for the first practice at 9:30 a.m. on Thursday. Height: 6-5 Weight: 308 Age: 29 College: Air Force Height: 6-5 Weight: 314...
Outcry grows over Virginia Tech’s plan to honor Michael Vick

Outcry grows over Virginia Tech’s plan to honor Michael Vick

Public opposition is growing against the planned induction of former Falcons quarterback Michael Vick into the Virginia Tech Sports Hall of Fame. The Roanoke Times reported Tuesday that two online petitions at change.org had received more than 90,000 combined signatures against the September induction. The Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine has also announced its opposition. The university...
Freeman reports for training camp 

Freeman reports for training camp 

 Falcons running back Devonta Freeman, who’s hoping to land a contract extension with the team, reported for training camp Wednesday, according to the team.  Freeman did not report during the open media period from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., but apparently arrived later. He’s also expected to practice when the team hits the field at 9:30 a.m. Thursday. His agent, Kristen Campbell...
Jones, McKinley, Gabriel limited to start camp 

Jones, McKinley, Gabriel limited to start camp 

The defending NFC champions had three major issues as they reported for training camp Wednesday. The Falcons, who will attempt to become the first losing Super Bowl team to return to the grand game since 1994, entered camp with All-Pro wide receiver Julio Jones and first-round pick Takkarist McKinley set to be limited in practice.  Also, the negotiations for a contract extension for Pro Bowl...
Free safety Allen signs exclusive rights tender 

Free safety Allen signs exclusive rights tender 

Falcons free safety Ricardo Allen, shortly after reporting for training camp, signed his exclusive-rights free-agent tender Wednesday. Allen, who converted from cornerback to free safety, has started at the spot over the past two seasons. The Falcons also waived offensive lineman Cam Keizur. Allen successfully made the transition from cornerback to free safety. He played 1,101 defensive snaps (99...
Video: Duke Riley on pulling his SUV

Video: Duke Riley on pulling his SUV

Falcons linebacker Duke Riley nearly broke the internet with a video of him pulling his SUV down a street in New Orleans. After reporting for training camp, he discussed the unique workout that he’s been doing since high school. 
Q&A with rookie defensive back Damontae Kazee 

Q&A with rookie defensive back Damontae Kazee 

Falcons rookie defensive back Damontae Kazee arrived for training camp on Wednesday. Here’s what the fifth-round pick from San Diego State had to say:  A: “It’s pretty much like the same thing over and over.” A: “No, I just brought some clothes and I’m about to drink a lot of Gatorade and get after it.”  A: “Hydrate. I’m not used to this...
Video: Dimitroff, Quinn on opening of training camp

Video: Dimitroff, Quinn on opening of training camp

Falcons coach Dan Quinn gave an injury report during his opening comments and general manager Thomas Dimitroff didn’t have an update on the Devonta Freeman contract situation. “We don’t have any players on PUP,” Quinn said. “We have three players that will be somewhat limited in their return to camp. Julio Jones, Tak McKinley and Taylor Gabriel. All of those guys will...
No update on Freeman contract situation  

No update on Freeman contract situation  

Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff has been optimistic about working out a contract extension for Pro Bowl running back Devonta Freeman, but didn’t have an update on Wednesday.   “No update,” Dimitroff said. “No update.”   Freeman’s agent, Kristen Campbell, reportedly left Atlanta without a deal being completed, according to NFL Network...
Dan Quinn, the optimist’s optimist, foresees sunny days for his Falcons

Dan Quinn, the optimist’s optimist, foresees sunny days for his Falcons

Dan Quinn, before the fall in Houston. (Curtis Compton/AJC) FLOWERY BRANCH — Contrary to outward appearance, there are things Dan Quinn does not love. On the eve of the Falcons’ training camp, the Earth’s sunniest human was asked to cite examples of stuff for which he actually has a distaste. “People who are dishonest,” he said. “That really bothers...
COVER 9@9: Falcons ready to move past Super Bowl debacle

COVER 9@9: Falcons ready to move past Super Bowl debacle

January 31, 2017, Houston: Falcons GM Thomas Dimitroff answers a question speaking with a reporter behind the scenes during media availability of the team on Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2017, at Memorial City Mall ice arena in Houston. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com Good morning! Welcome to The Cover 9@9 blog. It’s our weekly blog of everything you need to know about the Atlanta Falcons...
A little housecleaning before Falcons open training camp

A little housecleaning before Falcons open training camp

A scene to be scrubbed from memory as Falcons training camp opens: Matt Ryan walks off the field in Houston after the stunning 34-28 Super Bowl loss to New England. (Tom Pennington/Getty Images) So, I’m cleaning out the laptop and what should reappear but the rough draft of the lead story I was working on the night of Feb. 5, with the Falcons leading New England 28-3...
5 things to know about the Falcons on Wednesday

5 things to know about the Falcons on Wednesday

Here are five things to know about the Falcons on Wednesday: 1. Report date. The defending NFC champion Atlanta Falcons report for training camp today. Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff and coach Dan Quinn will address the media at 11:30 a.m. Players are schedule to report at 12 noon.  (Check back later for updates)  2. The roof won’t be open. Mercedes-Benz Stadium’s retractable...
LEADOFF: Mercedes-Benz Stadium opens one month from today (all but the roof)

LEADOFF: Mercedes-Benz Stadium opens one month from today (all but the roof)

Exactly one month from today, Mercedes-Benz Stadium will open -- all except the roof, that is. A marathon project in the works for a decade, and under construction for almost 3 ½ years, is now on the final sprint to opening day. “The first meetings I remember having about it were in late 2007, early ’08, with Mayor Franklin and Gov. Perdue,” Falcons president and CEO Rich...
Countdown to Camp: Day 1 – Did the Falcons protect the Brotherhood?

Countdown to Camp: Day 1 – Did the Falcons protect the Brotherhood?

Falcons head coach Dan Quinn has Gatorade dumped on him by his team late in the game against the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship Game at the Georgia Dome on January 22, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) Each day leading up to the start of training camp, we’ll look at a major issue that faces the Falcons and head coach Dan Quinn as...
Digi-blog goes to Falcons’ $1.5 billion potentially retractable roof stadium

Digi-blog goes to Falcons’ $1.5 billion potentially retractable roof stadium

  This is the room that houses the controls for the hypothetically retractable roof at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, which may work some time in 2017. (Jeff Schultz/jschultz@ajc.com) The chief of communications for Falcons owner Arthur Blank emerged from the room, closed the door behind him and delivered the verdict. “You can’t go in there,” Brett Jewkes...
5 position battles to watch in training camp

5 position battles to watch in training camp

The defending NFC champion Falcons report for duty Wednesday. The Falcons, who are eager to put the crushing 34-28 overtime loss to the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LI behind them, will hold their first practice Thursday.  “I feel that we have a really good communicative understanding about what we are looking for, from this football team,” Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff...
Retractable roof won’t be ready when Falcons stadium opens

Retractable roof won’t be ready when Falcons stadium opens

Mercedes-Benz Stadium’s retractable roof won’t be ready for action when the Falcons open their new $1.5 billion home next month. Construction delays have thrown “mechanization” of the roof behind schedule and will force the stadium to debut with the roof closed, Steve Cannon, CEO of Falcons parent company AMB Group, said Tuesday. Cannon said the organization doesn’t know...
Falcons good enough to avoid breakdowns, make title run again

Falcons good enough to avoid breakdowns, make title run again

Coach Dan Quinn and general manager Thomas Dimitroff have made a strong team in the Falcons’ front office and there’s no reason to believe the team can’t make it back to the Super Bowl. (Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com) Sports executives are not unfamiliar with being thrown under a bus, but it was a departure for Thomas Dimitroff last week when he found...
Video: Tour new Mercedes-Benz Stadium with D. Led

Video: Tour new Mercedes-Benz Stadium with D. Led

Take a tour of the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium with beat writer D. Orlando Ledbetter (who got kicked out of the coaches’ lounge) on Tuesday. There’s also a picture of the open roof, which apparently, will not be open for some of the early games. Enjoy. 
How much should the Falcons pay Freeman?

How much should the Falcons pay Freeman?

December 18, 2016, ATLANTA: Falcons running back Devonta Freeman spikes the ball scoring his second of three touchdowns for a 28-7 lead over the 49ers during the second quarter in an NFL football game on Sunday, Dec. 18, 2016, in Atlanta. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com FLOWERY BRANCH — Let’s play general manager. How much should the Falcons pay running back...
Behold! Mercedes-Benz Stadium

Behold! Mercedes-Benz Stadium

The good people with Atlanta United and the Atlanta Falcons (yes, I put United before the Falcons), gave us good and wise media folks a tour of $1.5 billion stadium on Tuesday. There’s no truth that, like a car, the stadium devalued as soon as it was used, though it may get knocked down a hunny thou or so just because of the quality of the tour’s clientele. Anyway...
Falcons won’t be able to open stadium roof for first games

Falcons won’t be able to open stadium roof for first games

The retractable roof of Mercedes-Benz Stadium will be in the closed position when the new Falcons stadium debuts next month and for an undetermined period of time beyond that, the CEO of Falcons parent company AMB Group said today. Steve Cannon said construction delays have the project behind schedule on fully mechanizing the roof. Therefore, he said the roof will be closed when the stadium opens...
Video: Check out the Falcons locker room inside Mercedes-Benz Stadium

Video: Check out the Falcons locker room inside Mercedes-Benz Stadium

The Atlanta Falcons new locker room is impressive. In a video posted on the Falcons’ Twitter account on Tuesday morning, fans are taken on a tour of the new locker room inside Mercedes-Benz Stadium which is a major upgrade from where the Dirty Birds spent the last several seasons. The Falcons will break in their new locker room on Aug. 26 when they play the Arizona Cardinals in the third...
Countdown to Camp: Day 2 – What makes Julio Jones so great?

Countdown to Camp: Day 2 – What makes Julio Jones so great?

Here’s Falcons receiver Julio Jones’ spectacular catch that nearly saved the Falcons from their Super Bowl collapse. HYOSUB SHIN / HSHIN@AJC.COM Each day leading up to the start of training camp, we’ll look at a major issue that faces the Falcons and head coach Dan Quinn as he’s set to enter his third season with the team. FLOWERY BRANCH &mdash...
7 things to know about Mercedes-Benz Stadium

7 things to know about Mercedes-Benz Stadium

Nearly every aspect of the Mercedes-Benz Stadium, a massive project birthed in early 2010, has commanded Atlanta’s attention for years. And with the inaugural football game scheduled for Aug. 26, excited fans won’t have to wait much longer to experience it for themselves. Meanwhile, here are seven things you should know about the city’s new shiny, monstrous...
5 bold predictions for the Falcons offense 

5 bold predictions for the Falcons offense 

After reaching Super Bowl LI, the Falcons’ offense will be expected to remain near the top of the league in 2017. “Our focus is not on the past,” Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff said on Monday. “It’s on moving forward and I know that’s a cliché.” The Falcons report for training camp on Wednesday, with the first practice scheduled for Thursday...
Julio Jones set to return to action

Julio Jones set to return to action

Falcons two-time All-Pro wide receiver Julio Jones, who’s recovering from offseason foot surgery, is set to return to the field during training camp.  The Falcons report on Wednesday and the first practice is Thursday. Jones will likely be limited.   “He’s healed up very, very well,” Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff said. “We are ready for him to...
Falcons remain optimistic about reaching new deal with Freeman

Falcons remain optimistic about reaching new deal with Freeman

Falcons general manger Thomas Dimitroff remains optimistic that the team can reach an amicable contract extension with Pro Bowl running back Devonta Freeman.  “Devonta, right now, we’ve had some good conversations over the offseason,” Dimitroff said on Monday at a community service appearance at East Lake YMCA. “I’ve talked to him on the field a number of times....
Dwight Freeney appears to be only last-resort option for Falcons

Dwight Freeney appears to be only last-resort option for Falcons

Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff helps Jasmine Kline, 13, build a bicycle at the East Lake YMCA Monday as part of the Future Wheels program in partnership with the Falcons. (Jeff Schultz/jschultz@ajc.com) The Falcons may have more talent and depth on the defensive line depth chart than any team since at least the 2004 season (the Patrick Kerney/Rod Coleman-led front)...
Falcons hope McKinley’s ready for third exhibition game

Falcons hope McKinley’s ready for third exhibition game

Falcons defensive end Takkarist McKinley, who’s recovering from shoulder surgery, will be “limited” at the start of training camp, according to Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff. The Falcons are hoping that McKinley, who was selected with the 26th overall pick in the draft, will be ready to play in the third or fourth exhibition game. “We don’t have the exact date...
Falcons are making push to get Freeman deal done

Falcons are making push to get Freeman deal done

Atlanta Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff speaks during a press conference at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis, Wednesday, March 1, 2017. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy) Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff and his staff plans to work “full time” on getting a contract extension done with Pro Bowl running back Devonta Freeman. He wouldn’t rule out having...
Video: Dimitroff discusses Devonta Freeman negotiations

Video: Dimitroff discusses Devonta Freeman negotiations

Falcons running back Devonta Freeman spikes the ball after scoring a touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals to tie the game 7-7 during the first quarter Sunday, Nov. 27, 2016, at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. (Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com) Here’s the training camp schedule: Wednesday, July 26th — Team Reports for Camp Thursday, July 27th — Practice: 9:30 a.m. &ndash...
Countdown to Camp: Day 3 – What will MVP Matt Ryan do for an encore?

Countdown to Camp: Day 3 – What will MVP Matt Ryan do for an encore?

Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan after OTAs on Thursday, June 1 2017. (By D. Orlando Ledbetter/dledbetter@ajc.com) Each day leading up to the start of training camp, we’ll look at a major issue that faces the Falcons and head coach Dan Quinn as he’s set to enter his third season with the team. FLOWERY BRANCH — Quarterback Matt Ryan, the first NFL most valuable player...
5 bold predictions for the Falcons defense 

5 bold predictions for the Falcons defense 

New leadership could push the Falcons defense up in the overall rankings in 2017. The Falcons, who report for training camp on Wednesday, will return 10 of the 11 players who started in Super Bowl LI, but will be under the direction of new defensive coordinator Marquand Manuel. Manuel is moving over from defensive backs coach and will replace Richard Smith. Also, Bryant Young was hired to replace...
Countdown to Camp: Day 4 – Deion Jones to follow up All-rookie season

Countdown to Camp: Day 4 – Deion Jones to follow up All-rookie season

Atlanta Falcons outside linebacker Deion Jones (45) works on his kick blocking skills during an NFL football practice Friday, July 29, 2016, in Flowery Branch, Ga. (AP Photo/John Bazemore) Each day leading up to the start of training camp, we’ll look at a major issue that faces the Falcons and head coach Dan Quinn as he’s set to enter his third season with...
Countdown to Camp: Day 5 – Neal looking to make big leap

Countdown to Camp: Day 5 – Neal looking to make big leap

NEW ORLEANS, LA – SEPTEMBER 26: Mark Ingram #22 of the New Orleans Saints is tackled by Keanu Neal #22 of the Atlanta Falcons at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on September 26, 2016 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images) Each day leading up to the start of training camp, we’ll look at a major issue that faces the Falcons and head coach Dan Quinn ...
A look at the Falcons’ 90-man roster entering training camp

A look at the Falcons’ 90-man roster entering training camp

If the Falcons are going to remain at the elite level in the NFL, the offense must continue to play spectacularly while the defense must make major strides. The Falcons are counting on the “Beasley-Jarrett Factor” to help improve the defense at key positions. The hope is that three rookie starters — strong safety Keanu Neal, middle linebacker Deion Jones and strongside linebacker...
The Falcons head to camp trying to get past a loss like no other

The Falcons head to camp trying to get past a loss like no other

The agony of defeat. (Curtis Compton/AJC) The Atlanta Falcons report for training camp this week bearing a historic tag: They came closer to being Super Bowl champs than any team that didn’t win the Super Bowl. They didn’t trail in regulation that star-crossed night in Houston. Indeed, they led by what is now the famous partial score in NFL annals – 28-3....
Cheap food prices won’t help Falcons’ fans who can’t afford PSLs

Cheap food prices won’t help Falcons’ fans who can’t afford PSLs

Falcons owner Arthur Blank, right, with team president Rich McKay, announced “fan first” menu pricing in 2016 but the cost to get into a Falcons’ game in 2017 is hardly “fan first.” (Brant Sanderlin / Atlanta Journal-Constitution) When it comes to a business’s most important areas, marketing and sales, the Falcons understand they are in a position...
About 6,000 PSLs remain for sale as Falcons season nears

About 6,000 PSLs remain for sale as Falcons season nears

Five weeks from the opening of Mercedes-Benz Stadium, the Falcons say they have slightly less than 6,000 personal seat licenses still to sell. Michael Drake, the Falcons’ senior vice president and chief revenue officer, expressed confidence that the PSLs will sell out and said there will be no single-game tickets available for purchase directly from the team this season. Drake said that as of...
Countdown to Camp: Day 6 – Schraeder a mainstay at right tackle

Countdown to Camp: Day 6 – Schraeder a mainstay at right tackle

Denver Broncos outside linebacker Von Miller (58) lines up against Atlanta Falcons tackle Ryan Schraeder (73) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016, in Denver. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey) Each day leading up to the start of training camp, we’ll look at a major issue that faces the Falcons and head coach Dan Quinn as he’s set to enter...
Matt Ryan amazed by new stadium’s giant video board

Matt Ryan amazed by new stadium’s giant video board

“Oh my god!” We expect many will have the same reaction as Matt Ryan did upon first seeing the giant video board above the Atlanta Falcons’ new stadium. “I can’t get over how big this stadium is,” Ryan exclaims during a tour of the nearly completed facility. (See video above)   Falcons fans will get their first peak inside Mercedes-Benz Stadium when Atlanta...
Canton-bound Davis pays homage to UGA 

Canton-bound Davis pays homage to UGA 

Former Denver running back Terrell Davis, who had a checkered career at the University of Georgia, is counting down the days until his enshrinement into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday, Aug. 5 in Canton, Ohio. “I never saw myself as a hall of famer,” Davis said on Thursday. “I saw myself as somebody who wanted to work hard and try to win some games and championships, but...
Matt Ryan: Kyle Shanahan’s Super Bowl calls were too slow

Matt Ryan: Kyle Shanahan’s Super Bowl calls were too slow

The Kyle Shanahan Fan Club has been called to order. (Henry Taylor/AJC) Full credit to Pete Prisco. The CBS Sports writer got Matt Ryan to do something nobody — at least nobody to my knowledge, and I keep track of this stuff — has done. He got Ryan to say something less than gracious. In a conversation with Prisco this...
Countdown to Camp: Day 7 – Jake Matthews’ improvement plan

Countdown to Camp: Day 7 – Jake Matthews’ improvement plan

122815 ATLANTA: Falcons tackle Jake Matthews takes the field to play the Panthers in a football game on Sunday, Dec. 27, 2015, in Atlanta. Curtis Compton / ccompton@ajc.com Each day leading up to the start of training camp, we’ll look at a major issue that faces the Falcons and head coach Dan Quinn as he’s set to enter his third season with the team.  ...
Report: McKinley ‘scheduled to sit out early days of training camp’ 

Report: McKinley ‘scheduled to sit out early days of training camp’ 

Falcons rookie defensive end Takkarist McKinley, who’s recovering from shoulder surgery, is scheduled to sit out the early days of training camp, according to a Bleacher Report article. The Falcons are set to report for training camp Wednesday.  The article is a feature on McKinley, who was the darling of the NFL Draft after his emotional appearance on stage. He had shoulder surgery...
Want to attend Falcons training camp? Here’s what you should know

Want to attend Falcons training camp? Here’s what you should know

Are you ready for some football? NFL training camps are opening throughout the country and the Atlanta Falcons are preparing to open training camp at their Flowery Branch facility. Here’s some news you can use if you are planning to watch last season’s NFC champions during training camp: > When will the players report?: All players are scheduled to report July 26. > When...
COVER 9@9: What’s going on in Carolina?

COVER 9@9: What’s going on in Carolina?

Carolina Panthers general manager Dave Gettleman gestures as he speaks to the media during his end of season press conference on Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2017 at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C. The Panthers fired Gettleman, they announced Monday. (David T. Foster III/Charlotte Observer/TNS) Good morning! Welcome to The Cover 9@9 blog. It’s our weekly blog of...
Atlanta Falcons 2017 Countdown to Camp: Day 8 – Freeman’s contract situation

Atlanta Falcons 2017 Countdown to Camp: Day 8 – Freeman’s contract situation

Falcons running back Devonta Freeman spikes the ball after scoring a touchdown against the Arizona Cardinals to tie the game 7-7 during the first quarter Sunday, Nov. 27, 2016, at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. (Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com) Each day leading up to the start of training camp, we’ll look at a major issue that faces the Falcons and head coach Dan Quinn ...
Date change for Atlanta United vs. Montreal

Date change for Atlanta United vs. Montreal

Atlanta United’s game against Montreal at Mercedes-Benz Stadium has been moved to 5 p.m. Sept 24 from 7 p.m. Sept. 23. The game will be nationally broadcast. The Falcons play at Detroit at 1 p.m. on Sunday, which now may be the program that will air before the Atlanta United game.
Should the Falcons sign 7-time Pro Bowler Nick Mangold?

Should the Falcons sign 7-time Pro Bowler Nick Mangold?

Center Nick Mangold (74) was released by the Jets after making the Pro Bowl team seven times. He’s 33 and coming off an ankle injury. (Mike Mccarn/Associated Press) FLOWERY BRANCH — The Falcons are getting awfully thin along the interior offensive line spots. After all of the starters answered...
LEADOFF: Cranes gone and turf coming at Mercedes-Benz Stadium

LEADOFF: Cranes gone and turf coming at Mercedes-Benz Stadium

In another milepost toward next month’s opening of Mercedes-Benz Stadium, the cranes have been removed from the field and preparations have begun for installation of the artificial-turf playing surface. Work progressed Monday on the subsurface for the turf. Until recently, the future field was covered with cranes and other construction equipment and materials. The $1.5 billion-plus stadium...
UPDATED DEPTH CHART: After Falcons place Robinson on reserve/retired list

UPDATED DEPTH CHART: After Falcons place Robinson on reserve/retired list

072816 FLOWERY BRANCH: Falcons Andy Levitre (right) and Alex Mack blocks for quarterback Matt Ryan while Grady Jarrett defends during the first day of training camp on Thursday, July 28, 2016, in Flowery Branch. Curtis Compton /ccompton@ajc.com FLOWERY BRANCH — A quick roster analysis reveals that the Falcons are thin at the interior line positions and have no one who’s...
Atlanta Falcons 2017 Countdown to Camp: Day 9 – The battle at right guard

Atlanta Falcons 2017 Countdown to Camp: Day 9 – The battle at right guard

Atlanta Falcons guard Wes Schweitzer sits in the locker room at the team’s practice facility, Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2017, in Flowery Branch, Ga. BRANDEN CAMP/SPECIAL Each day leading up to the start of training camp, we’ll look at a major issue that faces the Falcons and head coach Dan Quinn as he’s set to enter his third season with the team. FLOWERY BRANCH...
Michael Vick’s career advice to Colin Kaepernick: ‘Get a haircut’

Michael Vick’s career advice to Colin Kaepernick: ‘Get a haircut’

Speaking on FS1’s “Speak for Yourself” show Monday night, reformed NFL star Michael Vick offered a suggestion to out-of-work quarterback Colin Kaepernick: Start repairing his image by cutting his hair. “I’m not up here to try to be political correct but  -- even if he puts cornrows on it -- I don’t think he should represent himself, in that way, in terms...
Atlanta Falcons 2017 Countdown to Camp: Day 10 – The psychological hurdle

Atlanta Falcons 2017 Countdown to Camp: Day 10 – The psychological hurdle

Falcons coach Dan Quinn after OTAs on Thursday, June 1, 2017. (By D. Orlando Ledbetter/dledbetter@ajc.com) Each day leading up to the start of training camp, we’ll look at a major issue that faces the Falcons and head coach Dan Quinn as he’s set to enter his third season with the team. FLOWERY BRANCH — The Falcons, the defending NFC championship, are set to report...
Blank: Falcons are ‘no one-year wonder’

Blank: Falcons are ‘no one-year wonder’

With training camps set to open around the NFL soon, owner Arthur Blank wants the world to know that the Falcons plan to remain Super Bowl contenders for the foreseeable future. “I think we are in a great position,” Blank said before receiving a Lifetime Achievement award from the Atlanta Sports Council on Thursday. “I look forward to this year and many years to come. It’s...
Clemson coping well with prosperity

Clemson coping well with prosperity

Faced with a champion’s “problems” — complacency, entitlement, all that skin-softening lotion of lavish praise — Clemson’s Dabo Swinney has enlisted the help of everyone within reach. “Y’all have helped me out a ton,” he mentioned Thursday to a media audience here at the ACC Football Kickoff. “Y’all have made it easy because all spring...
‘Time Grimey’ gets featured in Sports Illustrated

‘Time Grimey’ gets featured in Sports Illustrated

Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Taylor Gabriel (18) runs past Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback Brent Grimes, right, for a 9-yard touchdown during the first half of an NFL football game in Tampa, Fla., Thursday, Nov. 3, 2016. (AP Photo/Jason Behnken) As the original member of “Team Grimey,” I read the SI article with great interest. My fraternity brother and former Falcons scout...
Peyton’s jokes refelect a bigger truth: The Falcons do have a problem

Peyton’s jokes refelect a bigger truth: The Falcons do have a problem

Hardy har har. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP) Peyton Manning, famous funnyman, made jokes and did a rather long skit at Wednesday’s ESPYs . The butts of Peyton’s bon mots  were the Atlanta Falcons, last seen being outscored 31-0 at the end of Super Bowl LI. And, not to say I told you so — not about the game’s...
Falcons on top at Atlanta Sports Awards

Falcons on top at Atlanta Sports Awards

The Atlanta Sports Council honored Atlanta’s outstanding athletes, coaches, teams and community contributors during the 12th annual Atlanta Sports Awards Thursday night. Here’s a list of the winners: Dan Quinn – Atlanta Falcons  Nick Chubb – University of Georgia Football  Gabby Curry – Buford High School Volleyball  Matt Ryan – Atlanta Falcons ...
Ranking the Falcons’ top 10 newcomers

Ranking the Falcons’ top 10 newcomers

June 13, 2017, Flowery Branch: Atlanta Falcons defensive tackles Dontari Poe (right) and Grady Jarrett walk off the field at the conclusion of the first day of mini-camp on Tuesday, June 13, 2017, in Flowery Branch. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com FLOWERY BRANCH —  The Atlanta Falcons, after going 11-5 and winning the NFC title in Dan Quinn’s second year as head coach...
More Atlanta Falcons Stories