Atlanta Falcons blog 

Atlanta Falcons blog by the AJC's D. Orlando Ledbetter

Report: Julio Jones expects to return against Texans

  • 9:27 am Friday, August 15th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

HOUSTON — Falcons coach Mike Smith gave his stock “we have a plan” answer when asked if wide receiver Julio Jones was set to make his return against the Houston Texans at 8 p.m. Saturday at NRG Stadium.

“We have a plan and we all know what it is and that’s to make sure that we have our players healthy and ready to go,” Smith said after practice on Thursday. “We’re not going to deviate from that. And I don’t want to give anybody any information that’s going to help them get prepared.”

The Falcons have a pre-game walk-through today at Rice [More]

Rookie RB Devonta Freeman back at practice

  • 11:33 am Tuesday, August 12th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

(Photo courtesy of the Falcons)

Falcons rookie running back Devonta Freeman left the field with an undisclosed injury on Monday. He was back at practice on Tuesday.

“Davonta is fine,” Falcons coach Mike Smith said after practice. “Devonta was just dehydrated from practice and we wanted to be very precautionary, take him off the field. We got him rehydrated and he’s ready to go.”

Freeman, a fourth-round draft pick, accounted for 107 total yards on 11 touches in the exhibition opener against Miami. He rushed for 50 yards on 10 carries and caught a pass for 57 yards.

The Falcons are already hurting at the [More]

Cover 9@9: Who else is wearing female deodorant?

  • 9:00 am Wednesday, August 6th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

( You can read the Cover9@9 blog  every Wednesday at 9 a.m. throughout the season. We’ll try to get to everything about the Atlanta Falcons. Here’s the third installment.  – D. Orlando Ledbetter)  

1. Man Law violation: Admission time.

Like Falcons wide receiver Harry Douglas, I’ve worn Secret deodorant.

But, let’s be clear, I’ve never worn female deodorant on a regular basis.

I ran out of some manly Old Spice and the only thing in the house was some Secret.

I had to make a decision.

Who else is out there wearing female deodorant?— D. Orlando Ledbetter (@DOrlandoAJC) August 06, 2014

Smell funky [More]

Falcons make Hard Knocks debut tonight at 10 p.m.

  • 8:01 am Tuesday, August 5th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH – The Falcons, who are having their most spirited and colorful camp in years, are set to debut on HBO’s Hard Knocks at 10 p.m. tonight.

Rob Gehring, who has worked the last 20 years for NFL and is the supervising producer and director of HBO’s Hard Knocks reality show, and his crew have been hard at work.

Before shooting they did some background work on Falcons running back Steven Jackson and rookie linebacker Tyler Starr, a seventh-round pick and longshot to make the team. Jackson suffered a hamstring injury early in camp, so it will be interesting to see [More]

Day 10: Falcons expected to shed some light on Hageman’s injury

  • 7:16 am Monday, August 4th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH – Back from Canton and ready for Day 10!

The training camp-train rolls on down the tracks, picking up some steam as it’s headed for exhibition game opener against the MIami Dolphins at 7 p.m. Friday at the Georgia Dome.

With the Tennessee Titans coming to town and the Falcons a little antsy over the fights, Ra’Shede Hageman’s injury and Terren Jones’ plight, it should be an interesting day at the Branch.

The Falcons return to the field with a closed morning walk-through and a full practice — no live tackling — with the Titans that is open to the public at 3 p.m. [More]

Updated DEPTH CHART: How 3-4 and 4-3 fronts stack up

  • 12:00 pm Monday, July 28th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH – After three days of unpadded practices, we have a few adjustments to make to our projected depth chart.

Falcons coach  Mike Smith said that because of heavy competition the depth chart will be extremely fluid this training camp.

“It’s going to be scrutinized every single day,” Smith said. “I think you’ll see the depth chart will change, maybe not on a daily basis but every couple of days. We want to look at as many combinations as we can.”

[PRACTICE IS OPEN to the public today. Gates open at 2:30 p.m. CLICK HERE FOR MORE DETAILS. Also, check back to [More]

Smith ready for pads to start popping

  • 7:05 pm Saturday, July 26th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

FLOWERY BRANCH — Falcons coach Mike Smith is looking forward to the team’s first padded practice on Monday.

The team spent major resources on revamping both the offensive and defensive lines this offseason. Smith believes that his staff can get a much better evaluation in full football equipment.

He plans to take full advantage of all of the padded practices allowed under the collective bargaining agreement.

“We’re going to be on the same schedule that we’ve used in the past,” Smith said after Saturday’s practice. “Some of our drills that we are doing during those practices has changed, but in terms of the [More]

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 from the first day of training camp.)  

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

Arians expects Falcons to bounce back; Abraham to keep on ticking

  • 2:00 pm Monday, June 30th, 2014 by D. Orlando Ledbetter

GREENSBORO – Arizona coach Bruce Arians believes the Falcons, who dipped to 4-12 last season after going 13-3 in 2012, will bounce back in 2014.

In his first season as head coach of the Arizona Cardinals, Arians led them to a 10-6 record last season, which included a 27-13 victory over the Falcons on Oct. 27, 2013.

The two teams will meet at the Georgia Dome on Nov. 30.

“I’m not looking forward it,” Arians said on Monday, before playing in his Georgia Celebrity Golf outing at Reynolds Plantation. “I thought (general manager Thomas Dimitroff) and (head coach Mike Smith) did a great [More]