Julio Jones: Just how bad is his hand injury?

Julio Jones

Julio Jones

Matt Ryan threw for 369 yards, Michael Turner had 171 total yards and Roddy White had 169 yards and two touchdowns.
Conspicuously absent from that list is Julio Jones, who finished the day with just one catch for 30 yards. Jones had eight targets over the course of the afternoon, so it wasn’t a lack of opportunity to make more plays that kept him from joining the rest of the offensive parade.
According to Falcons offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter, it wasn’t the Panthers defense either. Koetter said that a lacerated right hand suffered in Week Three against the Chargers had a lot to do with Jones’ quiet day.
“He still had eight targets. That’s a fair number; it just didn’t work out. Eight targets and one catch is not a good percentage,” Koetter said, via Michael Cunningham of the Atlanta Journal-Constituiton. “Julio’s hand is not 100 percent.
Credit him for playing and running his routes hard. But there’s no doubt, [as] we’ve seen him in some earlier games this year, when he’s 100 percent he will be even more effective.” Read more…

Fantasy Football 2012: The most impressive WRs of the preseason

Julio Jones

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The 2012 NFL Preseason is now three weeks in the books and with most starters barely playing, if at all, in the final preseason game we can now evaluate the whole preseason. Here are a few wide receivers that have impressed this preseason and who’s fantasy football arrow is pointing up.

Julio Jones

The Julio Jones bandwagon was steadily gaining followers during the summer, but there are no seats left on the train after his dominant preseason. Jones has looked every bit as hyped up as he was during the summer and then some. I think he’s leapfrogged Roddy White as the receiver to own in Atlanta and there probably isn’t a receiver other than Calvin Johnson I’d rather own than Jones. If you want him on your team, be prepared to spend at least an early second round pick in fantasy football drafts on him.

Justin Blackmon

The highly touted rookie had a tumultuous offseason getting arrested and then going through a lengthy holdout. Despite missing the Jaguars first preseason game, Blackmon has eight receptions for 120 yards and a touchdown in five quarters of action. He looks like Blaine Gabbert’s number one option ahead of Laurent Robinson. I was skeptical of the impact Blackmon was going to make initially, but now I’m confident he will be a WR4.  Read More…

TTR’s Game Changers – NFC South


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Join us as TTR Game Changers takes a tour through all 32 teams, identifying one player from every squad that I believe has a great chance of being a game changer in 2012.  To see the full series click here.

Atlanta Falcons – I believe that this year the Atlanta Falcons take the crown of the NFC South away from the Saints, even if it is only for this season. Atlanta will be putting the reigns of the offense in Matt Ryan’s hands more than ever this season and it could produce some real fireworks. Matt Ryan was a Top 10 quarterback in most major statistical categories in 2011, and he will have more weapons to work with in 2012. While some of those weapons are past their prime, two young players on their offense have not even reached their prime yet. I expect Jacquizz Rodgers to make a significant impact this season, as people will realize that he is a capable inside runner as well as a scat back. But it will be the continued development of Julio Jones that will make this team a scary offense. Jones’ main goal will be to take care of his body so he can play in all 16 games, if he does expect him to have Pro Bowl numbers this season, in only his second year as a pro. Roddy White may garner more targets and receptions, but it will be Jones that is the more dynamic player in the ATL.  Read More…

Julio Jones feels and looks different

Julio Jones

Julio Jones looks different and feels different going into his second season with the Atlanta Falcons.

A nagging hamstring injury kept him from having a big impact during his rookie season, but Jones is looking good so far during the offseason.  He’s also looking different; he’s cut his hair.

“There is a little less weight on the top of his head with his dreads gone, but he’s had a very good camp for us as you saw today,” coach Mike Smith said Wednesday, via D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.  “He made some very nice catches and he’s been making those types of catches all through camp.”

Jones donated his dreads to a charity that makes wigs for children with cancer.  “We do a lot of community service here, and from going to a lot of hospitals and seeing all the kids who are fans of mine, I just cut my hair and donated it for leukemia patients,” Jones said.

Read more here…