Originally written July 21, 2012 on Grits Blitz:
Five Storylines Entering Falcons Camp Curiously, a report in the Philadelphia Inquirer on Friday indicated that former Eagles coach Andy Reid felt that Samuel was “in steep decline” – the reporter’s words, not Reid’s – and that Samuel no longer suited the scheme. (Samuel responded via Twitter by saying, “I just finished reading the story on coach Andy Reid! All I can say is WoW! #fueltothefire #riseup.) Remember that Reid seemed to be clairvoyant in dumping former quarterback Donovan McNabb on Washington, a team in the same division, when McNabb’s time had passed and that the Falcons paid a small price for Samuel with a seventh-round pick. This guy just received some extra motivation   ProFootballTalk ranks the Falcons 12th in the League This is the year to do it, as players such as Tony Gonzalez, Michael Turner and John Abraham are at or near their functional end, and because of the aggressive moves they’ve made such as draft-day trades, the roster skews old.   Five Most Important Back-ups on Falcons Roster Kroy Biermann is an interesting player. He is a guy who can do everything well. He can drop into coverage, get after the passer and set the edge. He's also someone who can slide back to linebacker when Mike Nolan switches the defense into its 3-4 alignments.   Stephen Nicholas on Thin Ice with Atlanta Falcons? Potential Camp Casualty: Outside linebacker Stephen Nicholas missed a significant portion of 2011 with a quadriceps injury and picked up just 31 tackles in less than 30 percent of the team's defensive snaps. With the Falcons beefing up their secondary with the trade for Asante Samuel and re-signing of safety Thomas DeCoud, frequent use of nickel packages could result in some trimming at linebacker. Sean Weatherspoon and the combo of Lofa Tatupu and Akeem Dent are safe, which could put Nicholas and his $1.5 million base salary on the chopping block. Backup defensive tackle Vance Walker is due $1.26 million in base salary on a restricted free agent tender, which may bit too steep for his limited role. [follow]
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

What to watch in the NL Wild Card game

Sammy Watkins calls out EJ Manuel

Larry Donnell benches himself in fantasy, loses because of it

Josh Gordon says NFL’s drug policy is harrassment

Steve Smith: Ron Rivera hid in his office after cutting me

Rondo hoping for an opening night return from broken hand

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Jon Gruden on Raiders job: 'I'm not thinking about coaching'

Tom Brady defends not congratulating Garoppolo on TD

Ohio State student who ran on field loses full scholarship

Report: Carson Palmer's nerve injury 'still lingering'

Adam Dunn to retire after 14-year MLB career

Ryan Lochte: Phelps made dumb decision, will learn from it

Who is the new face of MLB?

NHL 15 predicts the LA Kings win the Cup again

J.J. Watt buys his mom a new car for her birthday

Ranking the NFL coaches already sitting on the hot seat

WATCH: Smith tells Panthers to go home and mow his lawn

The best games on the NFL slate in Week 5

Aaron Rodgers says smoking gesture a tribute to Jay Cutler

What will the A’s look like in 2015?

Major League Baseball's 2014 All-Disappointment Team

Jeter introduces 'The Players Tribune,' 'The Voice of the Game'

Grading each NFL's team's play at quarter-season mark

MLB.com posts wrong story saying A's won game

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

What to watch in the NL Wild Card game

Sammy Watkins calls out EJ Manuel

Donnell benches himself in fantasy and loses

Gordon: Drug policy is harrassment

Who is the new face of baseball?

Steve Smith blasts Panthers coach, GM

What will the A’s look like in 2015?

All-Disappointment Team in MLB

Ryan Lochte: Phelps made dumb decision

WATCH: Brett Favre in new commercial

Brady snubs rookie after TD pass

FCC: Washington nickname 'inappropriate today'

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.