The Atlanta Falcons play their final preseason game today against the Jacksonville Jaguars before turning their attention to roster cuts and getting ready for the New Orleans Saints in week one. With plenty of depth still on the roster, the Falcons would be making a mistake to play any starters any substantial minutes.
Marcus Mariota started the second preseason game going 6/6 for 132-yards and a touchdown in his first two drives. He is clearly in rhythm and ready for the season there is no reason to endanger his or any other established starter’s health against the Jaguars.
This game should be about fringe roster players making a final statement as to why they belong on the roster Atlanta will finalize this week.
Desmond Ridder should start and finish this game giving Atlanta a long look at their rookie quarterback and keeping Feleipe Franks and Marcus Mariota off the field. While Mariota is being benched it to protect his health benching Franks is about letting him focus on one position.
He is a playmaker attempting to make the roster at tight end but he demonstrated last Monday night he has no place on this roster as a quarterback. He didn’t complete one pass that wasn’t a simple check down and when Atlanta was inside the 10-yard line he went 0-4 with none of the four passes being particularly close.
Putting Franks in at quarterback is a waste of time for a player Atlanta needs to use as a utility player or make the tough decision to move on from.
Aside from the quarterbacks, Atlanta fans should be watching the running backs, receivers, and the defensive line closely as they appear to be the final positions that are up for grabs. Linebacker Deion Jones has returned to practice as well and could attempt to make a statement in this game to win back a contributing role.