The rookie cornerback out of Clemson is hurt the most with the loss of preseason games. Throw in the slate of games to open up the season and the fact that the cornerback position is one of the hardest to be thrown into, A.J. Terrell could see a rough start to his NFL career.
Going into Week 1, it is likely that Kendall Sheffield will be assigned as the starter but it is also expected that Terrell overtakes him before too long. Even so, Terrell still plays an integral part in this defense and will be tasked with covering some of the league’s best playmakers.
Week one sees both D.K. Metcalf and Tyler Lockette, alongside one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks, come into Atlanta. The following three weeks also have Terrell lining up with Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, and rookie Ceedee Lamb in Dallas, Allen Robinson in Chicago, and Davante Adams in Green Bay.
It does provide some benefit that the Atlanta Falcons have one of the league’s best-receiving corp that will work with him in practice. However, there becomes a point of diminishing returns. You can’t get the same experience in practice that you can in a game, no matter how many times you place yourself with the league’s best receiver. It’s just only natural that after a certain point, you’ve learned all you can without stepping foot in a live game.
So far though, Terrell has been impressive and seems to be up to the task to compete at the highest level.