NFC South: 2010 Week 9 High Energy NFC

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A look at a player who gave his team a significant boost in Week 9.

[+] EnlargeMichael Turner
Dale Zanine/US PresswireMichael Turner rushed for 107 yards and two touchdowns on 24 carries against Tampa Bay.
Last year and this year, the Atlanta Falcons have talked repeatedly about how they don’t want to wear out running back Michael Turner.

They are going more cautious than they were in 2008, when they let Turner carry 376 times. But you get the feeling that the Falcons are pushing whatever limit they have on Turner. At the moment, he’s on pace for 310 carries.

In Sunday’s victory against the division-rival Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Turner carried 24 times for 107 yards. He also produced two touchdowns as the Falcons took sole possession of first place in the NFC South.

That marked Turner’s second straight 100-yard game, and he has scored four touchdowns in the past two games. Like the rest of the Falcons, he’ll need to bounce back quickly from Sunday’s victory because Atlanta plays host to Baltimore on Thursday night and Turner is likely to play a big role again.

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