FLOWERY BRANCH – Over the offseason, the Falcons didn’t make a major move to replace left guard Justin Blalock, who was released after starting 125 games from 2007 to 2014.
The Falcons did sign Mike Person, a former seventh-round pick of the San Francisco 49ers, who has played in 17 games, but has no NFL starts. When the team lined up during minicamp, Person was at left guard.
But with Joe Hawley, Sam Baker and Peter Konz all coming back from knee surgeries, new offensive line coach Chris Morgan will eventually have some options.
“We’re figuring it out as we go,” said Jon Asamoah, who started 15 games at right guard last season. “It’s kind of with (coach Dan) Quinn and all of the new guys, everything is about competition. Everything is up for grabs and whoever wins whatever spot, wins it.”
Asamoah, who came over from Kansas City as a free agent last season, has played some left guard.
“Coming in my rookie year, I was the backup at everything,” Asamoah said. “I’ve touched on everything.”
If pressed to go over to left guard, could he do it?
“We’ll give it shot,” Asamoah said.
During his rookie season in 2010, Asamoah played in 15 games and made one start for the Chiefs at right guard against Buffalo on Oct. 31, 2010.
Asamoah reports that despite the injuries, the offensive line is working together over the offseason program as they are set to start the organized team activities on Tuesday and finish up with a minicamp June 16-18 before breaking until the start of training camp in late July.
“It’s been really good,” Asamoah said. “The ability to have that extra time with the new coaches and everything just gave us time to get used to the new philosophy, techniques and gain an understanding of what we are trying to accomplish. It’s been good so far.”
Asamoah executed some zone-blocking schemes while with the Chiefs, so the new outside-zone blocking scheme isn’t completely foreign to him.
“With (running back) Jamal (Charles) we did a lot of similar things in K.C., but everyone has different emphasizes and there are certain things that the new staff has stressed with how we are going to attack and be on the defense at all times,” Asamoah said. “So, it’s exciting.”
Asamoah played 966 snaps last season and gave up just two sacks and three hurries, according to profootballballfocus.com. He believes the new blocking scheme will help the unit all-around.
“It opens everything up when we are successful and commit to attacking the defense, we put a defense on its heels instead of us being on our heels,” Asamoah said. “It helps us as blockers. Everything that we are going to do and the way they are going to call plays is going to help us up front.”
Asamoah was a part of a group of 16 Falcons players at Dave and Buster’s at Sugarloaf Mills in Gwinnett to bowl with kids from the Challenged Kids and Friends program on Tuesday.
He wasn’t expecting to roll a 300.
“I struggle, we’ll see how it goes,” Asamoah said. “I just try whatever works. Sometimes it’s power, sometimes it’s finesse. I just go with whatever is getting any pins down.”
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