FLOWERY BRANCH, GA – The Atlanta Falcons today made roster moves to reach the NFL's mandatory 53-man roster limit.
The Falcons terminated the contracts of fullback Dan Klecko and center Brett Romberg. Atlanta waived tight end Robbie Agnone, wide receiver Troy Bergeron, wide receiver Tim Buckley, running back Dimitri Nance, center Blake Schlueter, wide receiver Andy Strickland, wide receiver Ryan Wolfe, tight end Keith Zinger, safety Rafael Bush, safety Eric Brock, cornerback Dominique Daniels, cornerback Chevis Jackson, linebacker Weston Johnson, defensive end Maurice Lucas, defensive end Emmanuel Stephens, guard Jose Valdez and linebacker Bear Woods. The Falcons also waived-injured wide receiver Brandyn Harvey.
Atlanta may establish a practice squad of up to eight players on Sept. 5.
Today's list of cuts may come with some surprises. Dimitri Nance, the undrafted free agent rookie running back out of Arizona State, had a strong training camp and preseason. Nance finished the preseason with 47 rushing yards and two touchdowns, both of which came during the first preseason game, a 20-10 win over Kansas City.
Perhaps most notable of the cuts is veteran cornerback Chevis Jackson. With a very crowded cornerback position and Jackson seeming to struggle in the final two games of the preseason, he became the odd man out at the position.
There were some notable players that made the team, however, according to the list of today's cuts. Undrafted free agent rookie Michael Palmer showed the coaching staff enough during a very strong camp and preseason to move into the active roster behind Tony Gonzalez and Justin Peelle.
Also making the roster as of today are running back Antone Smith and safety Shann Schillinger. Schillinger was aided by the waiving of veteran Matt Giordano earlier this week before the league-mandated first round of cuts.
With suspensions to both Robert James and Jonathan Babineaux, their rosters spots don't count against the 53-man roster since they won't be practicing with the team. Babineaux is facing a one-game suspension that will begin Sunday. James will serve out a four-game suspension.
The Falcons finished the 2010 preseason with a 2-2 record, solidifying the team's seventh straight non-losing campaign. The Falcons travel to Pittsburgh to take on the Steelers in the season opener at Heinz Field on Sept. 12. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. The Falcons have won their last two season openers and seven of their last 10 since 2000.
Here is a list of the roster by position:
QB: Matt Ryan, Chris Redman, John Parker Wilson (3)
RB: Michael Turner, Jerious Norwood, Jason Snelling, Antone Smith (4)
FB: Ovie Mughelli (1)
WR: Roddy White, Michael Jenkins, Harry Douglas, Brian Finneran, Eric Weems, Kerry Meier (IR) (6)
TE: Tony Gonzalez, Justine Peelle, Michael Palmer (3)
OL: Sam Baker, Justin Blalock, Todd McClure, Harvey Dahl, Tyson Clabo, Joe Hawley, Mike Johnson, Garrett Reynolds, Will Svitek, Rob Bruggeman (10)
DL: John Abraham, Peria Jerry, Corey Peters, Kroy Biermann, Lawrence Sidbury, Jamaal Anderson, Trey Lewis, Vance Walker, Jonathan Babineaux, Chauncey Davis (11)
LB: Mike Peterson, Sean Weatherspoon, Coy Wire, Stephen Nicholas, Curtis Lofton, Spencer Adkins, Robert James (7)
DB: Dunta Robinson, Brent Grimes, Christopher Owens, Dominique Franks, Thomas DeCoud, Shann Schillinger, Erik Coleman, William Moore, Brian Williams (9)
Specialists: Michael Koenen, Matt Bryant, Joe Zelenka (3)