Sunday, November 17, 2013
Reynolds, Konz start Falcons' shuffling
By Vaughn McClure
TAMPA, Fla. -- If Peter Konz has a future here with the Atlanta Falcons, he is prepared to move forward as an offensive guard.
Konz, the starting center for the first nine games of the season, moved over to right guard as the coaches opted to bench usual starter Garrett Reynolds for Sunday's 41-28 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Joe Hawley stepped in as the starting center.
Konz got beat up by Tampa Bay defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, who recorded consecutive sacks on the Falcons' first possession to keep Atlanta out of scoring range. McCoy finished with three sacks in the game, and Konz finished his day back on the bench in favor of Reynolds.
"It's not about me; it's about the team," Konz said. "Obviously, we didn't play good. I didn't play good. So I need to go to practice and get better."
Speaking specifically about his matchup with McCoy, Konz conceded he was overmatched.
"Just one on one, and I lost," Konz said. "So that's why they replaced me."
Konz, a second-round pick from Wisconsin in 2012, took over the center spot from Todd McClure. Now, Konz is uncertain about his future on the line.
"Now that I understand that guard could be in the future -- I don't know how we're moving forward -- but I'm going to study more. I need to get more reps at guard, start working it better," Konz said.
As for Reynolds, he said he was informed about being benched on Friday.
"I knew that was my role for the week but still prepared like I always do," Reynolds said. "Of course, you want to play. But you've got to step back and think about what's best for the team. If that's something that the coaches think is best for the team, I'm fine with that. I'm cool. And I'm going to keep preparing like I was playing."
Untested tackle Ryan Schraeder also was inserted in the game to replace starting right tackle Jeremy Trueblood. This could be the start of a lot of line shuffling as the Falcons prepare for the future.
Most figure the Falcons might target an offensive lineman in the draft. They've already added one veteran when tackle Sean Locklear signed last week coming off an ACL injury. Locklear was inactive on Sunday.