FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. – The Falcons announced Monday that Ricardo Allen would be the third player whose season ended in the first three weeks, but they are optimistic that they could get a few pieces back for their game against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday.
Running back Devonta Freeman has missed the last two games due to a knee injury and defensive ends Takkarist McKinley and Derrick Shelby missed the Saints game due to groin injuries.
"I'm optimistic that we will get some of them back," Falcons coach Dan Quinn said Monday. "I would say probably Takk is the closest. And then with Devonta and Derrick, we'll get them better steps through the week. But I think Takk is the closest of the three. I'd probably say it in that order: Takk and then Devonta and then Derrick."
McKinley was a limited participant in the Falcons' practice on Friday before their loss to the Saints, signaling that he may be recovering from the groin injury he suffered late in the win against the Panthers. Shelby also suffered a groin injury against the Panthers, but he was held out of every practice leading up to the Saints game.
Freeman may be the biggest question mark at this point. Quinn has remained adamant that the team considers him day to day and that he will return to the field when he shows the same explosiveness he had prior to the knee injury he sustained against the Eagles. Freeman has yet to practice in any capacity since the injury occurred.