QB Etling heads up Falcons’ practice squad

Quarterback Danny Etling looks toward the sideline before snapping the ball during the first quarter against the Jacksonville Jaguars Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019, at TIAA Bank Field in Jacksonville, Fla.

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Quarterback Danny Etling looks toward the sideline before snapping the ball during the first quarter against the Jacksonville Jaguars Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019, at TIAA Bank Field in Jacksonville, Fla.

Quarterback Danny Etling, who the Falcons claimed off waivers from the Patriots on Aug. 14, led a group of players signed to the team's practice squad on Sunday.

In addition to Etling, the Falcons signed wide receiver Christian Blake, defensive back Chris Cooper, guard Sean Harlow, defensive end Austin Larkin, defensive end Jacob Tuioti-Mariner and defensive tackle Justin Zimmer.

With just seven players signed, the Falcons have three openings on the practice squad.

In the exhibition season finale on Thursday, Etling, working with 10 to 12 plays he mastered, completed 15 of 25 passes for 174 yards for a touchdown. He finished with a respectable 94.4 passer rating and rushed 10 times for 67 yards to help keep drives alive.

He impressed the Falcon as he directed the Falcons to three touchdown drives in the first half and got them in range for a 53-yard field goal attempt that was missed by Giorgio Tavecchio.

After quarterback Matt Simms was injured, the Falcons claimed Etling. He had to learn the offense on the fly over the past two weeks.

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