FLOWERY BRANCH – Falcons offensive tackle Lamar Holmes, who was tipping the scales at 335 pounds last season, has slimmed down to 310 pounds and has recovered from foot surgery.
Holmes worked at left and right tackle during the team’s first minicamp practice on Thursday.
“One of the things that you could really see was that he was lean,” Falcons coach Dan Quinn said. “In this system, as an offensive lineman, you really have to be able to run your feet.”
Holmes, a third-round pick in 2012 out of Southern Mississippi, received the message in his “point of attack” tape from the coaching staff that he needed to lose some weight in order to better fit the new outside-zone blocking scheme.
“He took that message seriously in the offseason,” Quinn said. “One of things for him to get better in this system was to get lighter. I couldn’t be more pleased with where he’s at. He had a good first day.”
Holmes, who started 15 of 16 games in 2013, suffered a season-ending foot injury and was placed on injury reserve on Sept. 30. Tackles Jake Matthews (foot) and Sam Baker (knee) are still rehabbing from injury.
Newly acquired Mike Person was at left guard, James Stone was at center, Jon Asamoah at right guard and Ryan Schraeder at right tackle during the unit’s open session. The Falcons released long-time left guard Justin Blalock over the offseason.
In addition to Baker and Matthews, center Joe Hawley (knee), running back Antone Smith (leg) and safety William Moore (shoulder) did not have their helmets and were wearing baseball caps.
Defensive end Adam Carriker, cornerback Derek Cox, cornerback Kennard Cox, wide receiver B.J. Hamilton, tackle Nate Menkin, running back Horace Miller, running back Carlton Mitchell, fullback Collin Mooney, running back Evan Royster, guard Tevita Stevens and wide receiver Stephen Williams were practicing with the Falcons as tryout players.
Carriker was the 13th overall pick by the St. Louis Rams in 2007. He played two seasons with the Rams before playing four years with the Redskins. He has started 58 games and played in 65. He has nine career sacks.
Carriker has had three surgeries to repair a torn quadriceps. Quinn said he was impressed with Carriker’s length and speed.
“What an important two days for those players,” Quinn said. “(Derek) Cox was another one that I wanted to see the speed that he could play with. They both jumped out at me.”
FALCONS DRAFT BOARD
5 questions with Boise State running back Jay Ajayi
5 questions with Miami offensive lineman Ereck Flowers
5 questions with Minnesota tight end Maxx Williams
ATLANTA FALCONS 2015 DRAFT PICKS
First round: 8th overall selection
Second round: 42nd overall selection
Third round: 73rd overall selection
Fourth round: 107th overall selection
Fifth round: 146th overall selection
Sixth round: 185th overall selection
Seventh round: 225th overall selection
Seventh round: 249th overall selection*
*Pick is from New England through St. Louis
POSITION-BY-POSITION FOR 2015 NFL DRAFT
Wednesday: Top 5 Inside Linebackers
Thursday: Top 5 defensive tackles
Friday: Top 5 defensive backs
Saturday: Top 5 special teamers
Monday: Top 5 Offensive line
Tuesday: Top 5 Wide receivers
Wednesday, April 22: Top 5 Running backs
Thursday, April 23: Top 5 Quarterbacks
Friday, April 24: Top 5 Tight ends