The Falcons released their official depth chart for the season opener against the Chicago Bears at 1 p.m. Sunday at Solider Field.
About the only surprise is that Brooks Reed and Courtney Upshaw are listed as the first-team defensive ends in the base defense. However the Falcons, like most teams, spend much more time in the nickel and those rush defensive ends will be Vic Beasley, Adrian Clayborn and Takkarist McKinley.
Also, wide receiver Justin Hardy is listed as the backup kickoff returner and Taylor Gabriel as the backup punt returner both behind Andre Roberts.
“Taylor has certainly earned that through his time here,” Falcons coach Dan Quinn said. “It was something that we went into the offseason hoping to have a chance to have Taylor compete for it as well. Due to the (lower leg injury) he had in training camp, he wasn’t able to. It’s purely for Andre Roberts right now, but we’ll keep Taylor ready just in case.”
Wes Schweitzer won the starting right guard battle with Ben Garland, who’s listed as the backup right guard and center.
Here’s the depth chart:
WR 11 Julio Jones, 14 Justin Hardy, 19 Andre Roberts
LT 70 Jake Matthews, 74 Ty Sambrailo
LG 67 Andy Levitre, 64 Sean Harlow
C 51 Alex Mack, 63 Ben Garland
RG 71 Wes Schweitzer, 63 Ben Garland
RT 73 Ryan Schraeder, 68 Austin Pasztor
TE 81 Austin Hooper, 80 Levine Toilolo, 85 Eric Saubert
WR 12 Mohamed Sanu, 18 Taylor Gabriel, 15 Nick Williams
QB 2 Matt Ryan, 8 Matt Schaub
RB 24 Devonta Freeman, 26 Tevin Coleman, 28 Terron Ward, 25 Brian Hill
FB 40 Derrick Coleman
DE 50 Brooks Reed, 99 Adrian Clayborn, 98 Takk McKinley
DT 92 Dontari Poe, 95 Jack Crawford
DT 97 Grady Jarrett
DE 91 Courtney Upshaw, 90 Derrick Shelby
LB 44 Vic Beasley Jr.
LB 45 Deion Jones, 56 Jermaine Grace
LB 59 De’Vondre Campbell, 42 Duke Riley, 36 Kemal Ishmael
CB 23 Robert Alford, 29 C.J. Goodwin, 33 Blidi Wreh-Wilson
CB 21 Desmond Trufant, 34 Brian Poole, 30 Deji Olatoye
S 37 Ricardo Allen, 20 Sharrod Neasman, 27 Damontae Kazee
S 22 Keanu Neal, 36 Kemal Ishmael
K 3 Matt Bryant
KO 5 Matt Bosher
P 5 Matt Bosher
KR 19 Andre Roberts, 14 Justin Hardy
PR 19 Andre Roberts, 18 Taylor Gabriel
LS 47 Josh Harris
H 5 Matt Bosher
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