Freeman rushed for a career-low 3.6 yards per carry in 2019

Falcons running back Devonta Freeman, who averaged a career-low 3.6 yards per carry last season, is a candidate to have his contract restructured as the team has a more difficult salary cap situation than it’s willing to admit.

Freeman has three years remaining on his contract and is set to receive base salaries of $6.5 million in 2020, $6.3 in 2021 and $8.2 million in 2022.

“I’m here,” Freeman said on Monday. “I know how to play football really good. I have to continue to find ways to get better.”

Freeman, who’ll turn 28 in March, was asked about his future with the Falcons.

“Whatever happens, happens,” Freeman said. “I’ll just control what I can control and whatever happens, happens. I haven’t really dived in that far. We just have to see. I can’t answer that.”

Freeman, who missed three games with a foot sprain, said he was otherwise physically fine last season when he rushed 184 times for 656 yards and two touchdowns. He caught 59 passes for 410 yards and a career-high four receiving touchdowns.

Freeman seemed to be a better fit in former offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan’s outside zone scheme. The Falcons didn’t run as much outside zone last season under offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter.

Freeman dodged a question about whether he thought the offense was not balanced under Koetter.

“I try not to get caught up in all of that,” Freeman said. “I don’t do statistics when it comes to football. I’ll let ya’ll do that.”

Because the offense spent most of the first half of the season playing from behind, it was hard to hard to establish the run.

“Sometimes you have to take it however it comes,” Freeman said. “I just want to be playing right now. I just know that I want to be out there. Learn from it and embrace it. Just learn from your mistakes and try not to let it happen again.”

Freeman was trying to make it back from sports hernia surgery and an assortment of ailments that led to him playing just two games in 2018.

“I feel good,” Freeman said. “I try to perform at a high level each and every day.”

It was expected that Freeman would be rusty early in the season, but he never got rolling in 2019. He rushed for 88 yards in two games, but didn’t have an 100-yard game over 13 games.

“The cuts ain’t never go anywhere,” Freeman said when asked about his moves. “It was always there. ... Everything has been there.

“All I was doing was what I needed to do. When my number is called, if I need to run or pass ... but if I need to block or run, whatever I need to do. What you need me to do coach?”


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