The list looks similar to last weeks injury report. Defensive tackles Corey Peters and Jonathan Babineaux both saw limited practice Wednesday and today while dealing with knee and rib injuries respectively. They are almost shoe-ins for Sunday’s game. The only question that remains is how long they will remain on the field with the replacement of starters being a realistic thought.
Four other players were listed on the injury report today. Those are defensive end Cliff Matthews, safety William Moore, cornerback Chris Owens, and receiver Roddy White. I would never count Roddy out of a contest, as he hasn’t missed a game due to injury in his entire professional career. Mike Smith may remove him from the game sooner than most of the starters to ensure he doesn’t do any real damage to his knee, but I wouldn’t worry too much about ‘Rowdy’ Roddy White.
The same cannot be said for William Moore, Chris Owens, or Cliff Matthews. Moore hasn’t played since Week 13, and I don’t think the Falcons will be in any huge hurry to bring him back in a meaningless game against the Bucs and risk him further injuring his hamstring. I think it’s a safe bet Moore doesn’t dress for the game.
Chris Owens was on the injury report last week, and I didn’t see him on the field in Detroit last week. He’s gotten to the point that he’s a very solid defender as a cornerback in nickel situations, but the Falcons don’t lose too terribly much by not having Owens active. They have young CB Robert McClain who has shown he can play very well on the biggest of stages, and can fill in seamlessly (or has to this point) for Owens. It’s nice that the Falcons have some decent depth at the position for once.
Cliff Matthews has played sparingly this season. He has six tackles in limited action on 9 games. Missing him on Sunday won’t be a huge factor, if he truly is inactive.