The injury reports for the game between the Atlanta Falcons and Denver Broncos are out this week, and both teams have some key players that are hurt that could swing the game in Denver. The Falcons have some key starters on defense while the Broncos have one of their best veterans out and their starting quarterback potentially out.
A storyline throughout the week was whether or not Tevin Coleman would play, but he wasn’t even listed on the injury report all week and is expected to play regardless of what’s going on. Below, we’ll preview the injury reports for both the Falcons and Broncos.
Denver Broncos Injury Report
The Broncos aren’t that banged up heading into the game with the Falcons. Sure, they have starting defensive end Vance Walker on the injured reserve, but Jared Crick, Adam Gotsis and Billy Winn have been playing well in his stead. Walker is an NFL average-level interior defensive lineman as it is, but he had won the starting job there nonetheless.
The spot the Falcons get their biggest break is at weak-outside linebacker. While the Falcons offensive line hasn’t really been tested by a great pass rush just yet, they have held up very well early in the year. However, the Broncos will have to attack the Falcons without the talents of Demarcus Ware and will instead be playing Shane Ray and Dekoda Watson in his place. This is a huge break for Jake Matthews on the left side of the line.
Starting quarterback Trevor Siemian might not be able to play and has been monitored throughout the week. He’ll be a game-time decision. This would have rookie Paxton Lynch making his first start. Demaryius Thomas is essentially half of the passing offense in Denver, and he might be limited throughout the game which would allow Desmond Trufant and Robert Alford to have a much easier day in coverage.
The key to the game could be whether or not Virgil Green and Donald Stephenson play to their full potential. The Broncos running game has been mediocre since they went down with injury. If the Falcons can force the Broncos to pass the ball and stuff the Broncos run game even with Green and Stephenson in there, it could allow Atlanta’s defense to be the determining factor on Sunday.
Atlanta Falcons Injury Report
The Falcons lost Sean Weatherspoon during the Panthers game due to an Achilles rupture that claimed him for the season. After him, no one on injured reserve is as major of a loss. It’s the guys who might be out for the whole two-game road trip to Denver and Seattle that are an issue.
The Falcons linebacker corps will be missing both the starting and backup levels at weak-side linebacker and middle linebacker. Deion Jones and De’Vondre Campbell would be the normal starters but both are out with ankle injuries. Paul Worrilow is out with the groin injury for another couple of weeks. So that would mean newly signed A.J. Hawk and LaRoy Reynolds would battle for playing time at middle linebacker while Phillip Wheeler takes playing time at weak-side linebacker.
The Falcons would then have to make some moves for a starting strong-side linebacker with Brooks Reed being the ideal candidate there and Vic Beasley or Adrian Clayborn playing the LEO role in the base defense. Outside of the linebacker situation, there are a couple of notables playing banged up in Matt Bosher, Mohamed Sanu and Justin Hardy. However, since they are playing, they should still be able to help impact on Sunday in Denver.
The defense outside of the linebacker corps is near 100 percent and is getting back Jalen Collins from suspension while the offense is a little banged up, but is relatively healthy. Should the Falcons make it through Denver relatively unscathed, they could be almost perfectly healthy heading into Seattle for a crucial NFC matchup with the Seahawks.