Atlanta Falcons: DB Dezmen Southward undergoes minor knee surgery


Atlanta Falcons defensive back Dezmen Southward has undergone minor knee surgery, but is hopeful to return in time for training camp.

Southward is in the process of transitioning to cornerback from free safety, where new head coach Dan Quinn feels he is a better scheme fit. Per Vaughn McClure of ESPN, Southward stood on the sidelines on Tuesday before undergoing surgery on Wednesday:

"Southward stood on the sideline during the first day of organized team activities Tuesday. Afterward, coach Dan Quinn said Southward’s inactivity had to do with a knee injury. Southward had issues with his left knee last preseason and missed some practice time. It’s unclear if Wednesday’s surgery was on the same knee."

The injury is untimely for Southward, as each practice is crucial for him as he makes the move to a new position. With second round draft pick Jalen Collins yet to return from pre-draft foot surgery, this would have been a good chance for Southward to show what he can do while working on his technique.

It’s a setback for him, but he won’t be under too much pressure when he does return. Desmond Trufant is a nailed on starter at corner, and for now is joined by Robert Alford.

Collins might make a move outside long term, which should set up healthy competition for Alford this offseason. Where Southward will slot in when he returns is yet to be seen.

It’s not something to be too concerned about, though. The surgery is only minor and he will hopefully return for training camp. With his size, speed and versatility, Southward should have no trouble finding a role in Dan Quinn’s defense moving forward.

Next: Falcons could find left guard solution in Chris Chester

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