NFC South: Aaron Kelly

Falcons release 13 players

September, 5, 2009
9/05/09
5:55
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Pat Yasinskas


The Falcons have announced their cuts as they got down 53 players.

The following were released: wide receiver Troy Bergeron, running back Thomas Brown, offensive lineman Michael Butterworth, wide receiver Robert Ferguson, linebacker Robert James, wide receiver Aaron Kelly, defensive end Maurice Lucas, cornerback William Middleton, tight end Jason Rader, quarterback D.J. Shockley, offensive guard Jose Valdez, defensive tackle Vance Walker and linebacker Jamie Winborn.

Falcons put out first depth chart

August, 11, 2009
8/11/09
6:30
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Pat Yasinskas

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. -- A few evening notes from Atlanta's camp.

The Falcons put out their initial unofficial depth chart Tuesday and there aren't any real surprises. The first offense is what it was most of last year with tight end Tony Gonzalez added to the mix.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the offensive depth chart is the situation at backup wide receiver. With Harry Douglas lost for the season, the Falcons have Marty Booker and Brian Finneran listed as the top two backups. But Robert Ferguson, Chandler Williams, Eric Weems, Troy Bergeron and Aaron Kelly also are in the mix. Also, Chris Redman is listed as the No. 2 quarterback and D.J. Shockley is third.

On the defensive side, the Falcons have rookie Peria Jerry as the first-team nose tackle. The first-teamers in other positions of interest are Stephen Nicholas at strongside linebacker, Brent Grimes at cornerback and Thomas DeCoud at safety.

The Falcons were hoping Douglas would play a big role in the return game. For the moment, they're listing Jerious Norwood as the kickoff returner and Grimes as the punt returner.

The Falcons had a very nice event this afternoon. It was Alumni Day and more than 60 former Falcons showed up, including eight from the inaugural 1966 team. The event, organized by player development director Kevin Winston, was a little different than the usual.

This wasn't tied to any marketing or sales campaign. In fact, the afternoon practice was closed to the public. The alumni basically had a reunion as they watched practice. At the end of practice, coach Mike Smith called all the alumni to join the current players as he spoke to the team. Couldn't hear the speech. But I can say I heard several alumni raving about the current facilities and wishing they had something like the Flowery Branch complex back in their playing days. By the way, Morten Andersen showed up and looked like he's still fit enough to play in this league.

Checking in from Flowery Branch

August, 11, 2009
8/11/09
12:01
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Pat Yasinskas

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. -- I just got finished watching the Falcons practice and doing some interviews. Had a chance to talk with Matt Ryan, Brent Grimes, Brian Finneran and Tony Gonzalez, mainly for our upcoming Camp Confidential segment on the Falcons, but I got a few other notes from them that I'll share in the coming days.

I'll be out at practice again this afternoon, when the Falcons will bring in more than 60 former players, including a bunch from the 1966 team, for Alumni Day. But first, I wanted to share some quick observations from the morning session.

  • Gonzalez looked absolutely tremendous out there. Ryan was already very good, but it's going to be interesting to see what he can do with a true pass-catching tight end.
  • Roddy White doesn't look like his contract holdout set him back a bit. I saw him and Ryan hook up on one very nice out route.
  • I wasn't able to get much of feel for the receiver situation beyond White and Michael Jenkins. With the loss of Harry Douglas to injury, the Falcons are looking for a No. 3 receiver and they just brought in Marty Booker and Robert Ferguson and they've also got the veteran Finneran. I've heard young receivers Troy Bergeron, Chandler Williams, Eric Weems and Aaron Kelly have done some good things. I'll keep an eye on this situation in the upcoming practices and also plan to talk to the coaches to see who's impressed them. I'll give you more of an update once I've got it.
  • We heard lots from just about every member of Atlanta's rookie class last year. But one guy, who was relatively quiet last year, seems poised for big things. That's Thomas DeCoud. He pretty much was limited to special teams last year. But he looks like he's locked up the starting safety spot opposite Erik Coleman. The injury to rookie William Moore played some part in assuring that, but DeCoud was outplaying Moore even before the injury.
  • The Falcons fully intend to give third-year defensive end Jamaal Anderson every chance to stay in his starting role. But it looks like they're considering all their options. Chauncey Davis got some work with the first defensive line.

I'll be back with more after the afternoon practice.

Posted by ESPN.com's Pat Yasinskas

The Falcons just sent out their official list of the undrafted rookies they have signed. They added 10 players, highlighted by Alabama quarterback John Parker Wilson.

The rest of the list includes San Diego state receiver Darren Mougey, Clemson receiver Aaron Kelly, Colorado defensive end Maurice Lucas, Auburn long snapper Robert Shiver, West Virginia offensive lineman Ryan Stanchek, Arkansas offensive lineman Jose Valdez, Florida State linebacker Derek Nicholson, Northern Arizona punter/kicker Robbie Dehaze and Missouri linebacker Brock Christopher.

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