Falcons 2016 Training Camp Stock Report – Week 1

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY SportsTevin Coleman

Through eight days of practices, we can now start to see some trends emerging in Atlanta Falcons’ 2016 training camp. Let’s look back at the first week and see which players have been able to raise their stock, as well as those that have not.

Stock Up

RB Tevin Coleman

Everyone that visits training camp raves about Coleman’s improvement. He’s made plays in the passing game, a key component of his game that was sorely missing during his rookie season in 2015. If Coleman can make significant strides there, it could lead to him carving out a bigger chunk in starting running back Devonta Freeman’s workload.

LB De’Vondre Campbell

The rookie linebacker has also been drawing rave reviews nearly every day during the first week-plus of camp, thanks to outstanding athleticism. Those athletic traits have shown up in coverage as it now seems routine that some observer reports that Campbell has made a spectacular defensive play in nearly every practice.

CB C.J. Goodwin

It was telling that Goodwin got the reps at starting left cornerback during Friday Night Lights with starter Desmond Trufant nursing a hip injury. While the Falcons coaching staff is known for giving select reserves first-team reps to see how they would handle it, if they didn’t think Goodwin was capable of stepping up, they likely would have called upon another player like Jalen Collins or Akeem King.

Stock Down

It’s hard to single out any individual player as seeing his stock decline. That’s partially due to the fact that most camp observers usually focus on the good rather than the bad. It’s also because it’s hard to say someone’s stock is clearly declining just off a handful of bad reps in any given practice. But here goes:

QB Matt Ryan

Clearly the Falcons’ starting quarterback is going to be trade bait by the end of summer. Although perhaps offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan could give Nick Williams a run for his money as the scrappiest receiver in the team’s group. Shanahan was a wideout during his playing career at Texas:

WR Aldrick Robinson

The recent addition of veteran free agent Lance Moore seems like a shot across the bow of Robinson, who has mostly been drawing positive praise through the early going. Given the vested interest the team has in seeing both Mohamed Sanu and Justin Hardy succeed this year, there’s no reason to believe a veteran reserve like Moore was brought in to challenge either. Instead, it would seem the Falcons are looking to enhance the competition for the fourth wide receiver spot, where Robinson seems to have a firm lead. Another indicator that Moore’s addition is intended to push Robinson is the fact that both of them have not been regulars on special teams throughout their careers. It’s unlikely that the Falcons will carry more than one reserve receiver that isn’t a regular on special teams on game day, meaning that between Robinson and Moore, only one will likely stick.

 

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Aaron Freeman
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