Peria Jerry could face his little brother

FLOWERY BRANCH -- Peria Edward and John Wayne Jerry shared a bedroom while growing up in Batesville, Miss.

On Friday night, they will share an NFL field when the Falcons play the Miami Dolphins at 7 p.m. at Sun Life Stadium.

Peria, a defensive tackle and the Falcons' first-round pick in 2009, is expected to make his return from knee surgery against the Dolphins. John, an offensive lineman, was Miami's third-round pick in the 2010 draft.

They played together at South Panola High and in college at Mississippi and have never faced each other in a game. Along the way, they've been good friends.

"We are real close," Peria said. "We've never got to fighting or anything like that. He's a good brother."

With one an offensive lineman and the other a defensive lineman, they faced-off in practice at Mississippi.

"We always went one-on-one, so it’s nothing new," John said. "It’s just going to be a ballgame. He doesn’t have on the same color I have on, and I don’t have on the same color he has on, so it’s going to be a war. I’m pretty sure he looks at it the same way.”

John is the youngest of six children, and they called him "Baby J" around the house. Peria's nickname was "Pooh."

After John's Ole Miss days, he wanted to make it in the NFL, but not with the Falcons.

"I want to make my own path because to have an opportunity to actually bang it out with your brother, I think that’s a blessing," John said.

Peria is being counted on to be a presence in the middle of the Falcons' defense. He had his repetitions increased in practice this week. John has a shot to earn the Dolphins' starting left-guard spot.

The two probably will hug and chat before the game, but once the whistle blows, they'll be all business. Don't expect to see any trash talking from them.

"We’re family," John said. "That’s my best friend, man. He’s the person I am closest to in this world. He’s my big brother. He’s always been there for me, but ... both of us have a job to do."