Posted: 2:26 pm Friday, March 7th, 2014

Mike Johnson talks active, while team appears set to part with Peria Jerry 

By D. Orlando Ledbetter

Atlanta Falcons center Joe Hawley (61) and guard Mike Johnson (79) block defensive tackle Trey Lewis (97) and defensive tackle Vance Walker (99) during NFL football training camp in Flowery Branch, Ga., Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2010. (AP Photo/Paul Abell)

Atlanta Falcons center Joe Hawley (61) and guard Mike Johnson (79) block defensive tackle Trey Lewis (97) and defensive tackle Vance Walker (99) during NFL football training camp in Flowery Branch, Ga., Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2010. (AP Photo/Paul Abell)

It’s “Friday Free Agency Check-in” day.

#FFAC

Teams can start talking with agents about potential unrestricted free agents at 4 p.m. on Saturday.

With free agency set to start on Monday, teams can keep negotiating with their own players in order to keep them from reaching the open market.

In addition to defensive tackle Jonathan Babineaux and guard/center Joe Hawley, the Falcons are in “active talks” to retain the services of offensive lineman Michael Johnson, according to his agent Pat Dye Jr.

However, the team appears set to part ways with defensive tackle Peria Jerry, a former first-round pick. Jerry’s career arc was stunted by a gruesome knee injury in his second NFL game.

“There’s nothing going on,” said agent Bus Cook said on Friday.

Johnson, after a productive 2012 season as the jumbo tight end, was set to take over at right tackle last season before he suffered a dislocated left ankle and fractured fibula during an exhibition season practice with the Cincinnati Bengals.

Peria Jerry 2012

Falcons tackle Peria Jerry here putting a hit on Cincinnati quarterback Andy Dalton in 2012.

The injury required surgery and he was placed on injured reserve.

Johnson was injured on the first play of the 9-on-7 inside run drills. He left the team’s facilities in an ambulance.

Johnson played in all 16 games in 2012 and made one start. The Falcons were hoping that Johnson would be an athletic upgrade over the gritty Tyson Clabo, who was released last offseason.

Johnson was highly touted coming out of the SEC and Alabama. Falcons defensive tackle Corey Peters said that Johnson was the toughest player he faced while playing for Kentucky.

Johnson, a four-year starter at Alabama, was a third-round pick (98th overall) in the 2010 NFL draft.

Jerry was selected with the 24th pick in 2009, two picks before the Green Bay Packers selected Clay Matthews III. While Jerry battled injuries, Matthews turned into a four-time Pro Bowler and was the Sporting News’ defensive player of the year in 2010.

After coming back from the knee injury, Jerry played sparingly in 2010.

The Falcons’ position of not announcing details of injuries helped fuel the perception that Jerry’s has been a bust. In the second game of his career he suffered what was described as a “severe” injury. But the details were never forthcoming.

In 2010, he played about 30 percent of the snaps, but was inconsistent. The following season he started four of the 16 games that he played in. In 2012, he started nine of 14 games as he played some defensive end when the Falcons were in a 3-4.

Last season, he played 678 snaps, had 37 tackles and 3.5 sacks.

Jerry told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that he wanted to return.

“Whatever happens, happens,” Jerry said. “You (don’t) have any control over that. Really, we are just playing it by ear to see what happens. There is nothing that you can do about it. That’s the people upstairs’ decision.

“I started here and would love to stay here.”

The Falcons, who have elected not to use the franchise or transition tag this offseason, have signed Peters to a one-year, $1.5 million contract extension.

The Falcons’ list of potential unrestricted free agents include Babineaux, Hawley, Jerry, Johnson, Sean Locklear and Jeremy Trueblood, tight end Chase Coffman, cornerback Dominique Franks and linebacker Omar Gaither.

73 comments
TreeRollins
TreeRollins

The rest of them suck - and not like Heather Locklear!

TreeRollins
TreeRollins

Sign Hawley - he can play. Sign Heather Locklear - she can set your pants on fire! Babineau is the best d-lineman of last 5 years.

BigCrimson75
BigCrimson75

I tried to warn the "Bird-Cagers" 4 years ago concerning Mike Johnson. :(

Super nice guy, solid citizen....all that kinda stuff & He was even a decent football player at Bama......Once Saban arrived!!

Of course reality is/was Johnson had the HUGE benefit of spending his best seasons at Bama playing next to Andre Smith!! In '08, Bama ran a ridiculous 70% of all running plays to the Left side of the formation(Dre was @ LT & Johnson was @ LG). Smith was so great.....He made Johnson an All-American plus a 3rd pick & Antoine Caldwell(Center) an All-American plus a 3rd pick!!

Johnson as a Fresh & Soph at Bama(under Shula at RT) were ugly....that's being kind.

........oh, I almost forgot Andre Smith was a FA last season. Word around T-Town was Smith wanted to play for Atlanta. Hair-Gel wouldn't even consider him! Instead he inks Sam Baker for 41 mil over 6

L O N G agonizing years. :( :( :(

Smith inked for half of that......HALF!!!! And continues to rank amongst the League's best at his position. Ask our biggest rivals DC Rob Ryan what he thinks about Big Dre!

TreeRollins
TreeRollins

If it looks like a turrdd, smells like a turrdd, and especially plays like a turrdd, it's a turrdd. Boy genius Dimitroff is the only guy that takes 3 or 4 years to realize it.

Put that in your pipe and smoke it Arthur!

DarlaLewis
DarlaLewis

The only way you should retain Mike Johnson is you get him on the cheap. He's hurt a lot-- just like fullback Brady Ewing. These guys can't seem to stay healthy long enough to contribute to the team.

TreeRollins
TreeRollins

How many ways do we just have to point out the obvious. Pariah Jerry has sucked since the nanosecond we got him!

And his Sugar Daddy, Dimitroff, has sucked for wasting so many draft choices on busts just like him! Is there anything else we really have to say about this? It's the reason our team now sucks and will again this coming season.

Hang it up Arthur - you need your old pal Bernie back to pull you out of this stinkhole.

anothercomment
anothercomment

Perhaps this is proof they need to take Clay Mathews cousin, the son of all Pro Bruce Mathews from Texas tech.

it would be a big mistake to take someone as talented as Clowney, who is known to be lazy. I had a friend from college like that. He was selected as the first tight end in 1981. But by the 82-83 year he was back hanging out at school while his wife finished her degree. Why? He was a gifted athlete his whole. Life. Never really had to practice. My boyfriend who was a wide receiver on the team, and his roommate who was quarterback in waiting at the time ( who eventually became a Falcons backup Qb for a while) told me the big d! would complain in practice that he was sore! and the coach would let him out of practice! because he was so gifted. Then when he got to the NFL everyone is gifted, not practicing is a problem, even if you are a top draft choice. So even being a top draft choice the giants cut him, Google him and he is listed at being one of the biggest draft busts. He is my friend, nice to hang out with, play video games, meet other NFL players when you are 22. After a year he got picked up, cut, traded, played just enough to meet the pension requirements 3 full seasons. His big 10 records stood for over 20 years. but he was an NFL bust. Clowney sounds just like my friend Big D. It would be a big mistake. You don't ever want the most gifted person,,you also need ambition and drive.

DawgDadII
DawgDadII

Doesn't seem likely any of these players except perhaps Babineaux would help the Falcons return to the playoffs. Move on.

JacketMan
JacketMan

Jerry came into the League as damaged goods from College, and was outplayed from the start by the Falcons 7th Round Draft Choice of that same year, Vance Walker (check their stats while Walker was with the team; Walker beat him on virtually every category a Defensive Lineman is tracked on). Yet last season, the Falcons let the less expensive, more productive, Walker go to the Raiders while they kept the more expensive, less productive, oft-injured, Jerry.

Sometimes Management needs to know when it's time to admit they just blew it on a drafft pick and move on; that boat sailed on a long time ago, and these guys have been too hard-headed to man up to the fans they shouldn't have wasted a high draft pick on this poor choice.

MikeBanning
MikeBanning

Why waste time talking to horrible T.Dimitroff draft picks like Mike Johnson?

As deep as this draft is guys like Juwan James and Antonio Richardson from Tenn. could get pushed down to the 2nd or 3rd round.

Simply forget about Mike Johnson and go into the draft and get younger and more athletic replacements with less serious injury histories.

The NFL ain't that difficult, but for some reason the Falcons and Dimitroff try their best make it harder than it should be.

BigHittas
BigHittas

Put DaCoupe on the road!!! He couldn't tackle my grandma if she was running a dive. A rookie would be better at safety!!

doolie1
doolie1

While at one time Mike Johnson seemed to have potential, the dude always seems to be hurt or just not to step up. Forget him and move on. He's like Sam Baker 2.0

JSSN
JSSN

I see the fallacy has arisen from his shame crypt and is trying to revive his reputation. Stop with the jokes, you need to get back to the Cage and act important!

Esquire
Esquire

Not sure why Coffman has bounced around so much but the guy has made some Gonzalez-like catches as a Falcon.  Is it a good thing that we have no one on the roster worthy of the franchise tag? 

TampGator1
TampGator1

Only on an AJC blog would you read about someone comparing the intelligence of bloggers to the intelligence of the President of the United States of America.  Not sure any one blogging on here has a  law degree from Harvard or served on the Harvard Law Review.  But not sure what any of that has to do with a player possibly being released by the Falcons.     

gfw
gfw

Johnson?  Why?

Thomas Dimitroff on Peria Jerry in 2009 "He's going to hold the point (of attack). He has the ability to be a one-gap guy and disrupt behind the line of scrimmage. He's a high-motor defensive lineman...."

OneBlood
OneBlood

Jerry is a joke that nobody laughed at. Contract talks with Mike Johnson? The guy is a poster child for AFLAC.


Meanwhile the Saints are bleeding chips. Hilarious. Hope you like the new team. It's called the Breesy Grahams. Starring 5,000 yards of total offense, and an embarrassing first round loss.



LOL

BSNBC
BSNBC

Jerry is another Falcon draft bust!

Leviathan
Leviathan

Not sure what this ongoing affinity for Mike Johnson is all about. This guy has been injured entirely too much to be relied upon for any meaningful amount of snaps. Although I will say the fact that this front office is trying to hold on to an injury prone player that after 4 years has not shown any ability to play professional football in an actual game is not completely surprising. I hope he gets a 5 yr deal.

The Truth ATL
The Truth ATL

We need to draft the best players available and have good coaches. M. Tice and B. Cox should be able to coach up these players.  It's time to the get draft class right like Seahawks have done with lower draft picks. Finding the value in the lower grades will pay off in the future with right coaching. Atlanta needs to stop getting these aging veterans and start coaching up young talent. The game has change now where the younger talent in lower rounds can be just as good as a super star like J. Clowney.  Its all about the coach to motivate these players. The falcons have also hire sorry coaches for the past years. Tice and Cox will be much tougher coaches and wont baby these players. Perria Jerry 94 = Jammal Anderson 98 my fellow falcons. @SeenThatB4 maybe the saints will pick him up and make him a star like #50 Lofton.

SeenThatB4
SeenThatB4

Man I hate to see Peria Jerry leave the falcan'ts.  So many great memories of running right through him and his plethora of missed tackles.   Going to miss him, but, the next failcan't will step up to be  just like him!

GEAUX SAINTS!!!

Barves_Loss_Agian
Barves_Loss_Agian

Finaly there getting rid of that bust Perrier Jerry. Ive been sayin it 4 years they guy is no good!

Intruder
Intruder

In 2008, Jerry was named to the All-SEC First Team by the leagues coaches and to the All-SEC First Team by the nation's news media. Additionally he was named to the Associated Press All-America First Team. Peria Jerry suffered a major knee injury on September 20, 2009, which caused him to miss the remainder of the 2009 season.  


I think a case could be made that the injury ruined Jerry's career.

JSSN
JSSN

Ha ha, you cannibloggers calling each other "stupid and ignorant" while taking off subject swipes. You are eating your own over that worthless Peria Jerry! SMDH, only on the AJC blogs!

midtowncowboy
midtowncowboy

The stupidity and ignorance displayed on this blog explains why we have a stupid and ignorant president.

Leviathan
Leviathan

@MikeBanning Totally agree. Dimitroff is so caught up in trying to create new ways to solve his old problems. If you need O-linemen just go out and draft and or sign top notch talent. Mike Johnson will probably be signed to a 1yr deal for little or no guaranteed money(unless Dimitroff is a complete idiot) but why bother when this guy has shown nothing in 4 yrs. Dimitroff has a difficult time moving on from his draft pick busts, especially if they happen to get injured. Pariah Jelly should've been gone a yr ago. I'll bet that brittle FB he drafted too high in 2012 will be back as well. 

BigCrimson75
BigCrimson75

Esquire....Pass that stuff my way!!

Coffman makes Gonzo style catches!!!!

When, Where....How?

He's Brian Finneran minus the ability to get open..........occasionally.

JSSN
JSSN

@Esquire  

Simple, he can't block and he can't get teams that actually account for him to not take him away in the passing game. He's a third string TE/Special team player at best! He's never going to be what you folks want him to be.

BigCrimson75
BigCrimson75

Yup.

This is the idiot in charge of our Franchise. :(

Smitty also -- too bad Jerry never found his way into Smitty's doghouse alas Chris Houston or Laurent Robinson.

-----

I've never been one to rely on these so-called "Metrics" to determine if a player is good or not. The eye-test usually works.

However, post 2009 after Smitty & Hair-Gel ran off Houston in favor of Dunta & Christopher Owens -- One particular Metric system ranking player performance has Houston as a top 20 CB since 2010, meanwhile Dunta was in the 70s & poor Christopher Owens was outside the top 100! :(

.........not to mention, Houston makes pennies compared to what Hair-Gel tossed at Dunta.

SeenThatB4
SeenThatB4

@The Truth ATL And maybe the falcan'ts will pick up Lance Moore and Darren Sproles and make them stars too.

OneBlood
OneBlood

@SeenThatB4 Saints will sign him like other Falcons cast-offs. Cough..cough...Curtis Lofton...


DawgGoneIt
DawgGoneIt

@SeenThatB4  And the Falcons will miss Garrett Hartley and his missed FG's every game! He's good for 2-3 misses! And Roman Harper's inability to cover Julio!

JSSN
JSSN

@Intruder  

"I think a case could be made that the injury ruined Jerry's career."

Which ones? The ones at Ole Miss? He hasn't been healthy since High School!

OneBlood
OneBlood

@JSSN So why would you engage them? Don't be a cannibalism convert...

Kensdobs
Kensdobs

@midtowncowboy What does this blog have to do with your stupid, ignorant racism? Imagine a Harvard grad who finished at the very top of his class being called stupid & ignorant by a racist piece of racist peasant trash. Have a nice day.

doolie1
doolie1

@midtowncowboy

The 2005 season was Jerry's true freshman season at Ole Miss. After missing the first four games due to injury, he played in six of the final seven games. He finished the season with three total tackles.

In 2006, Jerry battled through injuries to play in eight games, making six starts along the defensive line. He made starts at end, tackle and nose tackle.

2007 saw Jerry named Second Team All-SEC by the Associated Press and Rival.

In 2008, Jerry was named to the All-SEC First Team by the leagues coaches and to the All-SEC First Team by the nation's news media. Additionally he was named to the Associated Press All-America First Team.


Do you know what his age was when he was signed by the Falcons(as a first round pick)? a month from 25. Should any of the injuries or his age been a red flag? Hell, it would have been a miracle if he wasn't a bust!

doolie1
doolie1

@JSSN @Esquire agreed mostly but he does look very fluid at times..just enough to make people second guess and think he can be a go too guy...then you just don't hear from him for a half of season

BigAlHeBDMan
BigAlHeBDMan

I'm still stupified as to why the Falcons got rid of Lofton. Whatever! The Saints did however, win 11 games with him clogging the middle. Shouldn't that count for something? 

BigAlHeBDMan
BigAlHeBDMan

Hartley may have missed a chip shot against the Falcons, but in reality, he did kick a game winner that sent the hated Saints to the Super Bowl and in that SB game he actually kicked 3 FGs. I looked it up. Maybe one day Falcon fans can have a kicker do the same for them.

SeenThatB4
SeenThatB4

The Saints have won13 of the last 16 versus the falcan'ts!   I'm sure they'll remember that much more!  

JSSN
JSSN

@OneBlood

Ray, I won't give you the time of day. You used up any goodwill I had for you long ago! The best you can do is be silent when it comes my posts, Your domain is that Cage, I'm not shaking one bit about you or what you think!

FalconUGAFan
FalconUGAFan

@Kensdobs @midtowncowboy This is and will always be the problem with a minority president. The minute you have an issue with them it makes you a racist or bigot or whatever you want to call it. Nothing in his post mentions anything about race, so that shows your ignorance.

OHHHHYeah
OHHHHYeah

@Kensdobs @midtowncowboy  Where did racism come in? Just because he thinks our president is incompetent, which he is, means he's racist? I didn't see one mention of skin color in that comment. Its the people like you, actually, who keep racism in this world going. "Oh he just talked crap about the president, it must be because he's black so that guy is racist." You make me sick. In essence, people like you say that I should like every single minority individual that I come into contact with or I'm racist. That's absolutely stupid. Maybe I just think our president is an idiot, as per his track record suggests. That has nothing to do with his skin tone, but rather his lack of ability to run a country. STFU and go call your friend Jesse Jackson. I'm sure he would love to talk to you about race wars and hate crimes. 

JSSN
JSSN

@doolie1@Esquire

That's because he can't play assignment football. If you're not an athletic freak, then that stuff gets you to be an afterthought! 

doolie1
doolie1

@SeenThatB4


The past is, well, the past. And unlike many here in the ATL I actually like the Saints. But, truth is:All-time seriesATL 47-43  id put a big asterisk since Nola has a ring got to give props. But truth be told, Nola was EXTREMLY lucky with Bree's. They didn't or couldn't have known what he was when they got him. And, he is coming to the end of his career....what's next? Before him, Saints fans wore paper bags on their heads...but I hope it all works out. I wish the NFCS is the strongest in the NFL, though I want ATL to win it...but Id like it to be, like Rick Flair said "to be the man you've got to beat the man"! 

Twisterfire
Twisterfire

@SeenThatB4  @DawgGoneIt thats his defense for everything. Go ahead and tell him how he doesn't have a penis and he will let you know how the Saints beat the Falcons last 13 of 16 matches.

Bird_
Bird_

There hasn't been a competent President in over 50 years, and you're not a racist for not liking every minority you come in contact with. Every minority you come in contact with couldn't care less about you liking them or not. Minorities don't live and die hoping the majority likes them.

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