Falcons WR Julio Jones (shoulder) is inactive for tonight's game against the Saints. That leaves Calvin Ridley, Russell Gage, Christian Blake and Justin Hardy as Atlanta's top 4 WRs. Ridley is a WR2 with upside; Gage a volume-based WR3. Downgrade QB Matt Ryan.
The Patriots have traded a 2nd-round pick to the Falcons in exchange for WR Mohamed Sanu. New England tried to acquire Sanu during this spring's draft, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, so it's clearly a player the team covets. Sanu was a steady producer in Atlanta, averaging 4.2 catches and 47 yards per game over the past 3+ seasons. He played primarily in the slot for the Falcons, but we'll see how he fits into the Patriots' WR corps alongside Julian Edelman, Josh Gordon (once he's back from his knee injury), Phillip Dorsett and Jakobi Meyers. When everyone's healthy, it figures to be Edelman, Gordon and Sanu in 3-WR sets. Sanu has a brand new offense to learn, though. And note that he's going from the league's 2nd pass-heaviest offense to its 14th run-heaviest. Sanu is worth stashing in most fantasy leagues but won't be a recommended Week 8 starter. The Falcons, meanwhile, figures to roll with either Justin Hardy or Russell Gage as the #3 WR. But Sanu's departure will mostly just free up extra targets for Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley and Austin Hooper.
Falcons WR Justin Hardy recently underwent surgery on his right shoulder. Recovery is expected to take just "a few weeks," per ESPN's Vaughn McClure, so Hardy's offseason shouldn't be impacted much. He was a non-factor in fantasy this season, finishing with a 20-221-3 line on 29 targets. Hardy could see a few extra looks in 2018 if WR Taylor Gabriel departs in free agency, but he still won't be worth a pick in fantasy drafts.
Falcons WR Taylor Gabriel (foot) is out for Sunday's game against the Saints. We don't have any details on the injury or know whether he'll be available for the playoffs. Gabriel's absence leaves Julio Jones, Mohamed Sanu, Justin Hardy and Aldrick Robinson as Atlanta's top 4 WRs.
Falcons WR Julio Jones (toe) is inactive for today’s game against the Bucs. He obviously didn’t look or feel good enough to go in pregame warmups. With WR Mohamed Sanu also out, Atlanta is down to Taylor Gabriel, Justin Hardy and Aldrick Robinson. Expect heavy doses of RBs Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman.
Lance Moore's illustrious Falcons career is over. The WR announced his retirement 3 days after signing with Atlanta. Justin Hardy remains the favorite for the #3 WR gig behind Julio Jones and Mohamed Sanu.
The Falcons have signed WR Lance Moore. Turning 33 later this month, Moore registered just 29 catches for 337 yards and 4 scores in 14 games for the Lions last year. It was his 3rd straight season under 40 catches and 500 yards. Moore could challenge Justin Hardy for slot duties, but we'd bet on the youngster winning out.
Falcons HC Dan Quinn made it clear that WR Justin Hardy is not a lock to replace Roddy White in the starting lineup. "As far as labeling Justin and saying he's automatically the two, I wouldn't be willing to go there," Quinn said. A 4th-round rookie, Hardy hauled in 58% of his targets and averaged just 9.2 yards per catch in limited action last year. At 5'10 and 192 pounds with subpar athleticism, he might max out as a slot, #3-type WR. We'll see what Atlanta adds to the position this offseason.
The Falcons have released WR Roddy White. The 27th pick of the 2005 NFL draft has spent all 11 seasons of his career in Atlanta, recording 6 seasons of 1,100+ yards. He's been in clear decline lately, though, and mustered just 43 catches, 506 yards and 1 TD this past season -- all at least 8-year lows. Now 34, White shouldn't be anything more than a #3 or #4 WR. And he's a long shot to be a fantasy asset in 2016. With Justin Hardy and not much else behind Julio Jones on the WR depth chart, Atlanta figures to add to the position in free agency and/or the draft.
Falcons rookie Justin Hardy said he's learning all the WR positions at rookie minicamp. He'll be battling for a slot role between Julio Jones and Roddy White this season. But learning the outside spots means Atlanta at least considers him a potential option on the outside down the road. White turns 34 in November, while Jones is currently set to reach free agency next offseason. Hardy won't be much of a fantasy asset in 2015 but could eventually turn into a weekly starter. He checks in 14th among WRs in our Dynasty Rookie Rankings.
The Falcons spent a 4th-round pick on WR Justin Hardy. WR is quietly a position of need for the Falcons, who only have a 33-year-old Roddy White, Leonard Hankerson and Devin Hester behind Julio Jones. Hardy is a smallish 5'10 and 192 pounds with mediocre speed. But he's a smooth mover who runs good routes and has reliable hands. That helped him set an NCAA record with 387 career receptions. He'll compete for the #3 WR spot in Atlanta right out of the gate. We'll see if Hardy can eventually replace White as the #2.