Flowery Branch – Another opportunistic Monday as well as a hot day, nothing changed for the Falcons they still have the same buzz and intensity going into week two of training camp 2019. The team finished the second part of a scrimmage in full pads. Matt Ryan had to move a bit in and outside of the pocket as the defense applied pressure. Young receivers C.J Worton, Olamide Zaccheaus, and Kahlil Lewis are trying to make the most of their opportunities with Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley watching from the cautionary zone.
Matt Ryan on younger players getting more reps
“It’s huge. You know, I think with Julio [Jones] being out, with Calvin [Ridley] being on the sideline for a bit, we’ve got young guys that I don’t always get the chance to work within a team setting. Individually I get to work with them, but they need to hear things – how I’m communicating in the huddle, the reminders I’m giving them when they break the huddle, the talk that we have after the play before the next play goes. I think it’s huge for me to get a feel for their body language and how they run routes, but I also think it’s big for them to understand what’s expected of them when they get in the huddle. I always feel like this is a great opportunity. This time of year when guys are down for guys to get in there and to feel comfortable in that huddle because at some point, inevitably throughout the year, they’re going to half to step up and make plays for us and they’re going to have to be in there. It’s been really good for us those last couple of days with those guys getting that extra work. “
In training camp, sometimes that’s all it takes a few more snaps to do that thing to catch the coaches eye. If you don’t make the 53 man roster, perhaps you can become a contingency plan.
If plan A goes down, plan B slides up, and you want to be on speed dial. In seasons past rosters had to be reduced in what appeared to be weekly, undrafted free agents or late-round draft picks didn’t always get enough time to shine. Last year the league change that format, now they play the entire training camp. Fortunately for these guys, they get an extra game with the Falcons playing in the Hall of Fame game Thursday night.
Most players play an entire career and hope to make it to the Hall. For a number of these players, they get to start their careers at the Hall of Fame. However, it’s going to take some more time with outstanding play over the years to earn a spot to rest their heads on a shelf.
The newly signed $64 Million Man (97) Grady Jarrett looked as if though he was attempting to blaze a path there, putting moves on newly acquired guard (77) James Carpenter that made me shake my head with amazement. But with all good linemen, they get their opportunities to shine as well. The massive Carpenter 6”5, 321 Lbs stood like a brick wall for the white team at times. It was a battle of size against quickness and strength. They both had their moments.
The 9 year Super Bowl-winning veteran from Augusta, GA was a nice addition with his experience at both guard and tackle. The current depth chart has him listed as the starting left guard. Devanta Freeman looks like a kid who was held in for recess for an entire year as cruel and unusual punishment. He is slashing, cutting, and thrusting off-tackle and around the end like a healthy version of himself.
The team practiced situational ball right down to the victory formation to run out the clock.
“We hit an entire third quarter, fourth quarter, end of the game moments that came up. Over two days, we basically split a game in all ways that you could. We tried to mix in versatility for all the players in a lot of spots. Defensively, mix in between some 3-4 principles, some 4-3 where it’s nice to have that versatility when you need it for stand up outside guys, 4-down guys and it’s important for us to have the ability to go in and out of some of those looks.
Thought it was good offensively, we had some more examples of some two-minute, to work down two-point plays, so all of those were a big factor for us. The way we kind of set the block up, that was another three-day one. Tomorrow’s practice, we’ll start doing some preparation for what Denver would look like, and we can organize that, then we’ll take off Wednesday and get ready to play.
We’ll come back, and then the next block of training camp begins for us. Think of it like, we’re still in camp mode, taking a couple of days break to go play, then we’ll come back, and we’re going back into a camp mentality. Another set of installs, another set of things to work on. Long way to go, but we made a lot of progress in seven practice days. I just had told the team, ‘We’ve got a hell of a long way to go, but if we keep getting better and getting closer, those things will play a hell of a lot better together, and that’s what we’re hitting on’” said head coach Dan Quinn.
The Atlanta Falcons Schedule is to play the Hall of Game Thursday, Aug 1, 2019