Nobody wanted to speculate on Sunday after Pro Bowl safety Keanu Neal was carted to the locker room just before halftime of the Falcons' game against the Colts, but given his immediate reaction to the injury, it was tough not to assume the worst.
On Monday, Falcons coach Dan Quinn confirmed those fears, saying he was "heartrbroken" for Neal and indicating that the safety would be shut down for the season. Reports had previously surfaced that Neal had torn his Achilles in the game.
The Falcons' first-round pick in 2016, Neal was named to the Pro Bowl after his second season and had developed into one of Atlanta's top defensive players. Neal missed nearly all of the 2018 season after tearing his ACL in the season opener against the Philadelphia Eagles. His return to the team was one of the major highlights of this offseason for the Falcons, and his loss will be felt acutely moving forward.