FLOWERY BRANCH – As expected, Falcons wide receiver Roddy White did not attend the second organized team activity practice on Wednesday.
“Roddy and his family are going through a very difficult time right now,” Falcons coach Mike Smith said. “I spent time with Roddy last week. These are not mandatory sessions. Our thoughts and prayers are still with Roddy and his family in this difficult time.”
Linebacker Sean Weatherspoon (knee), safety Zeke Motta (neck), defensive tackle Corey Peters (Achilles), wide receiver Julio Jones (foot) and running back Davonta Freeman (NFLPA mandatory function) also did practice during session NO. 2. Weatherspoon and Motta spent time working with the training staff.
White and his family are mourning the death of his brother Tyrone Moore, Jr., who was shot to death outside an Charleston, S.C., area night club. The funeral was last Thursday.
“I think he’s getting better every day,” said Falcons wide receiver coach Terry Robiskie, who’s been in contact with White. “That’s a healing process. I think he’s in the right frame of mind. I think he’s doing all that he can to be home and support his mother, grand mom and great grand mother. He’s doing it all. He’s doing a tremendous job of being the father of the house and making sure that everything is fine during the healing process.”
With White and the injured Julio Jones not at practice, Harry Douglas and Darius Johnson took over on the first-team offense. Jones is also dealing with a shooting in his family.
“Rod is where he needs to be at home during this healing process,” Robiskie said. “OTAs and all of that stuff is secondary to what he’s going through.”
The Falcons don’t appear overly concerned about White missing OTA sessions.
“We are just sitting back and giving him all of our love and support,” Robiskie said. “Roddy, over his whole career, he’s been a professional. I think when he comes in, he’ll be ready to go. I think right now he’s doing a fabulous job of being the man of the house and making sure that he’s a part of the healing process.”
Robiskie knows that White went to Arizona to work out with Cardinals wide receiver and friends Larry Fitzgerald.
“When he was out there doing his workouts, I didn’t really talk to him,” Robiskie said. “He was out there doing his work and whatever it is that he does when gets out there with Larry. I know when he gets back from those workouts, he’s in pretty good shape and he’s ready to roll. Roddy has been very, very professional his whole career. I expect him to come back and be in pretty good shape and ready to go.”
PHASE THREE OF OFFSEASON PROGRAM
–Thursday – OTA No. 3.
–Friday – Strength and Conditioning plus a rookie practice
–Monday– OTA No. 4.
–Tuesday, June 3 – OTA No. 5.
–Wednesday, June 4 – OTA No. 6.
–Thursday, June 5 – Rookie Practice.
–Monday, June 9 – Hacks vs. Jocks golf tournament. Defending champs – Team Scelfo.
–Tuesday, June 10 – OTA No. 7.
–Wednesday, June 11 – OTA No. 8.
–Thursday, June 12 – OTA No. 9.
–Friday, June 13 – OTA No. 10.
–Monday, June 16 – Physicals.
–Tuesday, June 17 — Day One: Mandatory minicamp (5 practices over three days)
–Wednesday, June 18 – Day Two: Mandatory minicamp.
–Thursday, June 19 – Day Three: Mandatory minicamp. (Offseason program ends for veterans).
TBA – Rookie Symposium
TBA – (Late July) – Report to Training camp.
DRAFT CLASS STORIES
THE ATLANTA FALCONS 2014 DRAFT CLASS