ATLANTA -- The Falcons had a couple decisions to make in the lead up to their Week 1 home opener against the Carolina Panthers, namely what the game status of Cordarrelle Patterson and KhaDarel Hodge would be. Arthur Smith announced on Friday the two skills players would be questionable for Sunday's game. He added they would take a decision on those two players all the way up to the deadline for inactives, which comes 90 minutes before the game's start. Seeing as we're in that 90-minute window, we have an answer: Patterson will not play, but Hodge will.
The news of Patterson's inactive status doesn't come as too much of a shock, seeing as the Falcons elevated running back Godwin Igwebuike from the practice squad on Saturday afternoon.
In other inactives news, the Falcons have kept a couple more skill players inactive -- WR Josh Ali and TE John FitzPatrick. However, perhaps the most surprising news came with the inclusion of CB Mike Hughes on the Falcons' inactives list. Hughes missed the final couple weeks of the preseason with a hip flexor injury, he confirmed in the locker room this week. Despite this, Hughes had been working back to 100%. He practiced every day this week and was not listed on any of the Falcons' injury reports in Week 1. With the elevation of CB Natrone Brooks, the Falcons still have good depth at defensive back even with Hughes inactive.
It also should be noted QB Logan Woodside is on the inactive list below, but he will dress as the emergency third quarterback. New league rules state that teams can keep a third quarterback on the 53-man roster and he does not count toward the active 48-man game-day roster. According to league rules, Woodside cannot enter the game unless both Desmond Ridder and Taylor Heinicke are ineligible to take the field. If either quarterback is cleared to return to the field of play, Woodside would have to immediately come out of the game.
Here is a full list of Falcons inactive players for Sunday's Week 1 game:
CB Jeff Okudah
QB Logan Woodside (Emergency Third QB – will dress)
CB Mike Hughes
OL Jovaughn Gwyn
WR Josh Ali
RB Cordarrelle Patterson
TE John FitzPatrick
Take a look at the final preparations being made at Mercedes-Benz Stadium for our opener game against the Carolina Panthers