Atlanta Falcons blog 

Atlanta Falcons blog by the AJC's D. Orlando Ledbetter
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Q&A: A pre-training camp chat with Mike Smith

  • 8:00 am Friday, July 25th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH – Before training camp opens today, we chatted with Falcons coach Mike Smith, the winningest coach in franchise history, who’s determined to rebound from his first losing season.

He was in good spirits during an exclusive interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He shared some thoughts about the team and gave the fans some key information before things get started today with a closed morning walk-through and an open afternoon practice. 

(Check back later throughout the day as we post stories, notes, blogs and videos on AJC.com from the first day of training camp.)  

Q: How are you all going to make sure [More]

Roddy White: The signing of the contract is done

  • 7:01 am Friday, July 25th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH – Shortly after reporting for training camp Thursday night, Falcons wide receiver Roddy White signed his four-year contract extension at the team’s head quarters.

            White, 32, a four-time Pro Bowler who’s closing in on most of the team’s receiving records, signed the performance-based contract with is possibly worth $30 million. The deal will also give the Falcons some salary cap relief, expected to be about $3 million.

Before White’s deal the Falcons had $9,263.836 million under the $133,000,000 salary cap, according to the NFLPA. That number should increase to the $12 million to $13 million range once White’s contract [More]

Countdown to camp: Day 1 — Quarterbacks

  • 6:00 am Friday, July 25th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH — Finally, training camp is here.

The team takes the field this morning and holds an afternoon practice that will be open to the public.

We’ll have updates throughout the day, so feel free to check back at AJC.com for updates.

We started our countdown 10 days out.

Countdown to camp: Day 10 – The new coaches

Countdown to camp: Day 9 – Special teams

Countdown to camp: Day 8 – Defensive backs

Countdown to camp: Day 7 — Linebackers

Countdown to camp: Day 6 — Defensive line 

Countdown to camp: Day 5 – Offensive line

Countdown to camp: Day [More]

Falcons DT Corey Peters plans to be ready for season-opener

  • 3:58 pm Thursday, July 24th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH – Falcons defensive tackle Corey Peters has style.

He drove into training camp with a new ride, a Kia Soul!

The youngsters love the hip care, but after signing a new $1.5 million contract this offseason he could have went the sports car route.

“It has plenty of room,” said Peters, who’s 6-foot-3, 305 pounds. “It rides good.”

Peters, who’s coming back from a ruptured Achilles surgery, was plenty early for the 5 p.m. team meeting. He was placed on the active/physically unable to perform list.

He was injured in the 15th game of the season against San Francisco.

“It’s just snapped,” said Peters, [More]

Countdown to camp: Day 2 — Running backs

  • 6:00 am Thursday, July 24th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH — The countdown rolls on!

The veterans report today. The rookies have been on site since Tuesday and the first practice is set for Friday.

The media fitness run is Saturday at noon. I’ve checked with president and CEO Rich McKay to see if the ambulances are ready. Also, we’ll need to make sure that at least two CPR-trained Falcons cheerleaders are on-site.

Hey Mr. President — @FalconsRMcKay — thanks for the follow! Are the ambulances ready for the media fitness run tomorrow?— D. Orlando Ledbetter (@DOrlandoAJC) July 24, 2014

HERE’S the big NEWS heading into camp: Falcons WR [More]

Cover 9@9: HBO Hard Knocks’ cameras are rolling

  • 9:00 am Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

(Welcome all! With the NFL becoming more of a passing league, the “Cover 9” blog will become all of the rage. You can read it here every Wednesday at 9 a.m. throughout the season. We’ll try to get to everything about the Atlanta Falcons. Here’s my first installment of Cover 9@9. – D. Orlando Ledbetter)  

1. Rob Gehring  —

“In the beginning when Steve (Sabol) wanted to do this show, he wanted to show how hard it was to make an NFL roster,” Gehring said. “He always loved the content of these guys at the back end of the roster, the 53rd man. Sometimes [More]

Countdown to camp: Day 3 — Tight ends

  • 6:00 am Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH — The countdown rolls on!

The rookies report Tuesday and the veterans — minus one key future Hall of Famer in Tony Gonzalez — report Thursday. The first practice is set for Friday.

We started our countdown 10 days out.

Countdown to camp: Day 10 – The new coaches

Countdown to camp: Day 9 – Special teams

Countdown to camp: Day 8 – Defensive backs

Countdown to camp: Day 7 — Linebackers

Countdown to camp: Day 6 — Defensive line 

Countdown to camp: Day 5 – Offensive line

Today, we’ll look at the tight end group.

Here’s our projected depth chart for the tight [More]

Falcons WR Julio Jones cleared for training camp practice

  • 7:05 pm Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH — Julio Jones, the Falcons’ dynamic young wide receiver, has been cleared for training camp practice, which starts on Friday, head coach Mike Smith told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Tuesday.

However, Jones, who’s recovering from foot surgery, will be limited.

“He will be limited in terms of his snaps,” Smith said. “Our number one goal is to make sure that we’ve got everybody as healthy as we possibly can be, but we know that we have to get these guys some work together and reps. Julio will be out there participating in practice right from the start.”

Jones is returning from a [More]

Countdown to camp: Day 4 — Wide receivers

  • 6:00 am Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH — The countdown rolls on!

Coach Mike Smith, who was out in Montana, and general manager Thomas Dimitroff, who was out cycling with Lance Armstrong, reported back to the office on Monday.

The HBO cameras are all in place and rolling. The first big event was Smith’s staff meeting with the assistant coaches.

The rookies report today, the veterans Thursday and the first practice is set for Friday.

We started our countdown 10 days out.

Countdown to camp: Day 10 – The new coaches

Countdown to camp: Day 9 – Special teams

Countdown to camp: Day 8 – Defensive backs

Countdown to camp: Day [More]

VIDEO: Do Falcons have best WR Duo?

  • 12:24 pm Monday, July 21st, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

Are Julio Jones and Roddy White the best wide receiver tandem in the league? The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s D. Orlando Ledbetter and CineSport’s Noah Coslov discuss that and what they need from Steven Jackson in 2014.

PROJECTED 2014 TRAINING CAMP DEPTH CHART

OFFENSE

WR 11 Julio Jones, 13 Darius Johnson, 14 Courtney Roby, 18 Freddie Martino, 89 Bernard Reedy,

LT 72 Sam Baker, 76 Lamar Holmes, 74 Terren Jones

LG 63 Justin Blalock, 68 Gabe Carimi, 67 Adam Replogle

C 61 Joe Hawley, 66 Peter Konz, 62 James Stone

RG 75 Jon Asamoah, 69 Harland Gunn

RT 70 Jake Matthews, 79 Mike Johnson 73 Ryan Schrader

TE 80 Levine Toilolo, 86 [More]

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