Falcons place Franks, Grant on reserve/COVID-19 list

081321 Atlanta: Atlanta Falcons quarterback Feleipe Franks breaks loose for a long first down run against the Tennessee Titans during the 4th quarter of a NFL preseason football game on Friday, August 13, 2021, in Atlanta.   “Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@ajc.com”

Credit: Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@

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081321 Atlanta: Atlanta Falcons quarterback Feleipe Franks breaks loose for a long first down run against the Tennessee Titans during the 4th quarter of a NFL preseason football game on Friday, August 13, 2021, in Atlanta. “Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@ajc.com”

Credit: Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@

Team dealing with outbreak with eight players now on the list

Falcons backup quarterback Feleipe Franks and nickel back Richie Grant were placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list Tuesday as the team is dealing with an outbreak.

Now, the Falcons have eight players on the list. Linebacker Brandon Copeland, wide receiver Tajae Sharpe, outside linebacker James Vaughters and inside linebacker Dorian Etheridge were placed on the list Monday.

The Falcons (7-8) are set to face the Bills (9-6) at 1 p.m. Sunday at Highmark Stadium in Orchard Park, New York. If Copeland and Vaughters can’t clear protocols, the Falcons will be very thin at outside linebacker.

Outside linebacker Quinton Bell is on the practice squad, and defensive lineman John Cominsky has been working out with the outside linebackers. Defensive end Nick Thurman also is on the practice squad.

Sharpe suffered a foot injury Dec. 19 against San Francisco and did not play Sunday against the Lions. Marvin Hall was called up from the practice squad to replace him.

The Falcons are already thin at defensive tackle with Marlon Davidson and Tyeler Davison also on the reserve/COVID-19 list.

Franks has been Matt Ryan’s backup for the past three games. Josh Rosen will move up the No. 2 quarterback slot.

The Falcons are fully vaccinated and have a chance to get some of the players back before facing Buffalo.

According to the latest NFL protocols released Dec. 16, “any such fully vaccinated individual should be tested every day after the confirmed positive test. Any such fully vaccinated individual shall be released from quarantine, provided they are asymptomatic for at least 24 hours” and complete one of three testing options that produce negative results, an acceptable cycle threshold value or both.”

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