The Falcons announced on Monday the signing of eight players to future contracts. Each were signed off the team’s eight-man practice squad, including wide receivers Marcus Jackson and James Rodgers, guard Jacques McClendon, defensive tackle Micanor Regis, linebacker Pat Schiller, tight end Andrew Szczerba, cornerback Peyton Thompson, and running back Josh Vaughan.
Jackson, Rodgers, Regis, Schiller, and Thompson were all undrafted rookie free agents with the Falcons this summer that were signed to the practice squad at the outset of the regular season. Josh Vaughan was with the Carolina Panthers this past summer before being added to the Falcons practice squad in late September. Both McClendon and Szczerba were added in November. McClendon is a second-year player that was with the Detroit Lions in training camp, while Szczerba was an undrafted rookie with the Dallas Cowboys.
Terms of their deals were not disclosed, but a year ago players such as Robert McClain, Drew Davis, and Tommy Gallarda were signed to future contracts that were two years in length. That likely means that the eight players signed Monday have contracts that expire following the 2014 season.
The Falcons announced today that they have signed guard Harland Gunn off the New Orleans Saints practice squad to their roster. He will be replacing Joe Hawley, who is currently serving a four-game suspension. Gunn adds depth at guard, and potentially could get looks as a reserve center. During his summer with the Dallas Cowboys, he worked some at center due to injuries sustained along the Cowboys line. Gunn was cut by the Cowboys at the end of training camp, and has been on the Saints practice squad since.
Gunn originally joined the Cowboys this past spring as an undrafted free agent out of Miami. There, he played alongside former Falcon undrafted free agent signee center Tyler Horn. Over his final two seasons at Miami, Gunn started 25 games beside Horn at left guard. He also started 5 games during his sophomore season at right guard.
In light of the team’s decision to cut defensive end Ray Edwards last night, today the Falcons made several roster moves to fill the void. Wide receiver Tim Toone was signed and tight end Chase Coffman was promoted from the practice squad. Coffman replaces tight end Tommy Gallarda, who was placed oninjured reserve. Replacing Coffman on the practice squad is tight end Andrew Szczerba.
Toone spent training camp with the Falcons and was one of the final cuts made prior to the regular season. Toone could potentially push for a role on special teams as the punt returner, a role he performed well during the preseason. Gallarda injured his shoulder during Sunday’s loss to the New Orleans Saints. Coffman was added to the practice squad early in the season after being a roster addition during the middle of training camp.
Szczerba is an undrafted rookie out of Penn State that spent the summer with the Dallas Cowboys before being part of the final roster cutdown. He caught 14 career passes during his collegiate career, working primarily as a blocker.
The Falcons today announced that guard Garrett Reynolds would be placed on injured reserve. Replacing Reynolds on the team’s active roster will be practice squad player Phillip Manley.
Reynolds had missed the past two games due to a back injury he suffered in the Falcons Week 5 win over the Washington Redskins. In his place, rookie Peter Konz has been starting at right guard. Reynolds started at right guard through seven games last year before being benched in favor of Joe Hawley. This year, he managed six starts at the position before injury sidelined him.
Manley was an undrafted rookie free agent out of Toledo signed this past spring. He was cut by the team on the eve of their Week 1 matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs, and added to the practice squad where he has been ever since.
The Falcons announced the addition of running back Josh Vaughan to their practice squad today. Vaughan replaces safety Mark LeGree, who was released. Vaughan is a former Carolina Panther, a team that the Falcons take on this Sunday.
Vaughn played 10 games over the course of the 2010-11 seasons with the Panthers. During that time, he carried the ball 10 times for 31 yards (3.1 avg) and a touchdown. An undrafted free agent out of Richmond in 2009, he was originally signed by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. After being cut at the end of training camp, he finished the 2009 season on the Jacksonville Jaguars’ practice squad. He was signed by the Carolina Panthers the following May and briefly earned a spot on their practice squad to start the 2010 season. He would spend time on the practice squads of the Indianapolis Colts and Buffalo Bills before rejoining the Panthers. He appeared in 3 games before ending the season on the Panthers practice squad. He also began and ended the 2011 season on the practice squad for Carolina, bookending a 7-game stint on the roster. He was cut by the Panthers this past August before joining the Falcons.
Vaughan is a former collegiate teammate of Falcons defensive end Lawrence Sidbury. Both helped Richmond win a FCS National Championship in 2008. That year, Vaughan rushed for 1,884 yards and 20 touchdowns on 355 carries (5.3 avg). He finished his career with the Spiders sharing the school’s all-time record with rushing touchdowns (34) and was second behind Tim Hightower in career rushing yards (3,393).
LeGree joined the Falcons practice squad at the start of the season after spending time in the training camps of the San Francisco 49ers and Chicago Bears.
The Falcons formally announced that guard Phillip Manley was signed to the practice squad, a move expected after being waived Saturday. Manley will be taking the spot of D.J. Davis on the team’s practice squad. But another practice squad spot has now become available since tackle Bryce Harris was signed by the New Orleans Saints to their active roster. Both Manley and Harris were undrafted free agents for the team, signed this spring.
Aaron Wilson of the Scout.com reported earlier today that the Falcons would be activating wide receiver Drew Davis from their practice squad to their active roster. Later, Jay Adams of AtlantaFalcons.com tweeted that the Falcons would cut guard Phillip Manley to make room for Davis.
Davis will serve as the team’s fifth wide receiver, after the recent release of Tim Toone. Manley made the team as an undrafted free agent, and will likely replace Davis on the practice squad if and when he clears waivers.
Ryan and I discuss and preview the Falcons Week 1 matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs in this week’s episode. You’ll also hear our opinions on the Falcon’s additions to the practice squad, as well as whether an interview of Mike Nolan divulges some question marks within the Falcons front office. During our preview of the Chiefs game, you’ll hear our thoughts on how certain aspects of the Falcons offense and defense match up with the Chiefs. Later in the episode, we are joined by a FalcFans.com forum member in Allen Strk, who helps us reminisce on past Falcon players and games. You’ll also hear some thoughts on current Falcons, as well as predictions for the upcoming 2012 season including how good we think the Falcons will be and whether or not they are good enough to make the Super Bowl.
Duration: 54 minutes
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The Falcons announced today that they added three more players to their eight-man practice squad to complete the unit. The team announced they had signed tight end Chase Coffman, linebacker Pat Schiller, and safety Mark LeGree after signing five players yesterday.
Coffman and Schiller both were with the Falcons this summer. Coffman was a mid-August signing that was cut in early August by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Coffman is a third-year player, but his only on-field experience was six games with the Cincinnati Bengals in 2010. Schiller was an undrafted free agent this year with the Falcons out of Northern Illinois. LeGree was a fifth round pick in 2011 by the Seattle Seahawks last year but was cut prior to the start of the season. He played on three different teams’ practice squds during the course of the 2011 season: Arizona, San Francisco, and the New York Jets. He was re-signed by the 49ers after the season, but was cut by them in mid-August. He was picked up by the Chicago Bears and finished camp with them before being cut this past weekend. LeGree hails from Appalachian State where he tallied 22 interceptions in three seasons as a starter.
The Falcons announced five additions to their eight-man practice squad today, having signed wide receivers Drew “D.J.” Davis and Marcus Jackson, offensive tackle Bryce Harris, defensive tackle Micanor Regis, and cornerback Peyton Thompson. All five players were released by the team yesterday in their 53-man cutdown. The Falcons have set no timetable for when three other players could be added to fill the remainder of the practice squad.
Davis spent last season on the Falcons practice squad after being an undrafted free agent out of Oregon. The other four players were all undrafted free agents this year. During the preseason, Jackson as tied for fourth on the team with 7 receptions for 73 yards. Thompson’s 12 tackles tied for fourth on the team as well during the preseason. And Regis’s 6 tackles were tied with Travian Robertson for second most of the team’s defensive tackles.
Through their designation, practice squad players are paid a weekly salary of $5,700. They are free to sign with other teams since they are treated as free agents, yet still practice with their own team and travel to most road games.