Falcons guard Elijah Wilkinson is out for Sunday’s game

Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com

SEATTLE -- Elijah Wilkinson, the Falcons’ starting left guard, is tending to a personal matter and was declared out of Sunday’s game by the Falcons on Friday.

“He should be back Monday, but sometimes people need to deal with life when something comes up,” Falcons coach Arthur Smith said Friday. “We’re always here to support everybody. Nothing that we expect to be a long-term issue.”

Wilkinson did not practice Thursday to tend to a personal matter and was not present during the open portion of practice Friday.

Colby Gossett and Chuma Edoga worked at his position at Husky Stadium for the second day in row.

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The Falcons (0-2) are set to face the Seahawks (1-1) at 4:25 p.m. Sunday at Lumen Field.

“We’ll make a decision (on Saturday) between Gossett and Chuma,” Smith said. “But they both will be up.”

Gossett, 27, who played at North Forsyth High, is listed on the depth chart as Wilkinson’s backup.

“We’re excited about Colby,” Smith said. “That’s the way it goes. Things come up all the time. It could happen on the first play of the game. That’s why you’ve got to make sure you’re working (to prepare) depth.”

Gossett, who’s 6-foot-5 and 311 pounds, was a sixth-round pick (213th overall) by the Vikings in 2018 out of Appalachian State. He played in five games for Arizona and started four games in 2018.

He spent time with the Patriots and Browns in 2019 and elected to opt out of the 2020 season because of COVID-19 pandemic. He was waived by the Browns on Aug. 31, 2021, and claimed by the Falcons.

He played for Falcons offensive line coach Dwayne Ledford at Appalachian State.

He played in 14 games and made one start for the Falcons last season. He played 74 offensive snaps and gave up one sack. He also played 49 special-teams snaps.

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Edoga, who played at McEachern and USC, was waived by the Jets on Aug. 30 and claimed by the Falcons. He has played in 24 games and made 12 starts, all at right or left tackle.

Edoga, 25, was drafted in the third round (92nd overall) of the 2019 draft by the Jets.

“He’s good on the left side,” Smith said. “He’s been working both for us.”

Gossett said he’s ready to step in to the lineup.

“It’s kind of the same position I was in last year,” Gossett said. “Preparing every week like you’re going to be starter. When your number gets called, you’re ready to go. No difference there, I guess I’ve got a bigger role on game day.”

Gossett was elated when the Falcons called after he sat out 2020 and was released by the Browns.

“I can’t really say I regretted anything,” Gossett said. “I wouldn’t be where I am today saying that. I definitely missed the game that whole year. Getting to get back at it and feeling like I performed pretty well when I came back was a boost for me.”

Electing to sit out was difficult, but was done for health reasons.

“I have a kidney condition,” Gossett said. “It’s a genetic kidney condition, so I was the high-risk option. It was something at the time, we didn’t know much about COVID-19. We didn’t want to take the chance in the long run. I figure it was the safest bet for me.”

Gossett is expecting a battle from Seattle’s defensive front.

“It’s a typical Seattle defense,” Gossett said. “They have hard-nosed players. They are going to come off the ball and give you a run for money.”

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Atlanta Falcons 2022 NFL schedule

Sept. 11: Saints 27, Falcons 26

Sept. 18: Rams 31, Falcons 27

Sun., Sept. 25 at Seattle, 4:25 p.m.

Sun., Oct. 2, Cleveland, 1 p.m.

Sun., Oct. 9, at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m.

Sun., Oct. 16 vs. San Francisco, 1 p.m.

Sun., Oct. 23 at Cincinnati, 1 p.m.

Sun., Oct. 30 vs. Carolina, 1 p.m.

Sun., Nov. 6 vs. Los Angeles Chargers, 1 p.m.

Thur., Nov. 10 vs. at Carolina, 8:15 p.m.

Sun., Nov. 20 vs. Chicago, 1 p.m.

Sun., Nov. 27 at Washington, 1 p.m.

Sun., Dec. 4 vs. Pittsburgh, 1 p.m.


Sun., Dec. 18 at New Orleans, TBD

Sat., Dec. 24, at Baltimore, 1 p.m.

Sun., Jan. 1 vs. Arizona, 1 p.m.

Sun., Jan. 8 vs. Tampa Bay, 1 p.m.