Under Ryan’s new deal, his salary-cap number decreases from $10 million to $9.6 million for 2013.
With the room left over, the Falcons have enough to make a reasonable offer to defensive tackle Richard Seymour, a seven-time Pro Bowler who is a free agent. Both sides talked over the offseason, but were not able to strike a deal.
Veteran defensive end Osi Umenyiora signed a two-year, $8.5 million free-agent deal with the Falcons. His salary-cap number is $3.75 million.
The Falcons have drafted four defensive ends over the past two drafts with the hopes of improving their pass rush. Seymour, a defensive tackle who has 57.5 career sacks, could help the rush.
Just three days into training camp, it’s too early to tell if the Falcons have improved their pass rush.
“It’s very hard to evaluate the in-line play,” Falcons coach Mike Smith said after Saturday’s evening practice. “When I say in-line play, I’m talking about the offensive and defensive lines. We’ll get a lot better feel over the next four weeks.”
In addition to signing Umenyiora, the Falcons drafted defensive end Malliciah Goodman in the third round and Stansly Maponga in the fifth.
“I’m very confident that Jonathan Massaquoi, who played for us last year, will be in a very competitive mode to compete with the two guys that we drafted,” Smith said. “We have to get some pass rush out of Kroy Biermann. We have to get some pass rush out of Corey Peters, who was on the (physically unable to perform) list for the first half of the season last year, and that hurt our numbers.”
Gonzalez on leave: After two practices, tight end Tony Gonzalez flew to California on Friday. Smith wouldn't say how long he would be away from the team.
“His son is starting tackle football this week, and he wants to be with him,” Smith said. “Tony will be back. Our plan is that Tony won’t play in the first (exhibition) game, but he will play in the last two (exhibition) games.
“Tony had made these commitments to his family prior to deciding to come back and play. When Tony can be here, he’ll be here and be a part of it.”
New look: Umenyiora has worked at linebacker in some of the Falcons' defenses.
“I’ve never really done that before,” Umenyiora said. “But in a situation like this where it’s something I might have to do, I’ve just got to work on it. I don’t know if I am going to have to do it during the actual game or not, but it’s cool to come out here and get a feel for it and see if I can do it.”
Jackson update: Running back Steven Jackson, who signed to replace Michael Turner, is off to a fine start.
“I’m very impressed,” Smith said. “Steven (Jackson) is one of the hardest working guys that I’ve been around, and I’ve only been around him for 70 or 80 days. He has a great work ethic.”
Jackson has gotten up to speed on the Falcons’ playbook.
“He’s done a great job of learning our offensive schemes,” Smith said. “It’s new to him, so this is different from what he’s done in years past, but he’s got a great work ethic, and he’s a guy that we’re relying heavy on to be a contributor to our offense this season.”
Moore shining: Rookie Martel Moore, an undrafted rookie from Northern Illinois, has won some of his battles in the one-on-one passing drills.
Moore, 6-foot and 183 pounds, is running his routes fluidly and making great cuts. He helped to lead the Huskies to the Orange Bowl last season. He had 1,083 yards receiving and caught 13 touchdowns for the Mid-American Conference champs.
Moore ran the 40-yard dash in 4.56 and 4.57 seconds March 12 at Northern Illinois’ Pro Day, according to NFL.com’s Gil Brandt. He also had an impressive 35-inch vertical jump.
Hearty meal: If you're on a low-carb, low-sugar diet, the Game Changer sandwich probably is not for you, but they are moving like hot cakes at the Falcons' training-camp concession stand.
The sandwich costs $5. It has pulled pork, macaroni and cheese, bacon, cole slaw and fried onion rings on it.