1. Injury Update: So far so good with injuries this year in Falcons camp and Monday was another healthy day, but we're reaching the point in camp when players begin to get some random days off. Monday was one of those days with Julio Jones having limited reps with the Bengals in town. Smith said it was precautionary and they'll continue to watch Jones' workload as well as every other player. Smith said Sean Weatherspoon left practice early, but he didn't have an update on his linebacker at the end of practice.
2. Behind The Scenes: When Cincinnati head coach Marvin Lewis was asked about the effect a TV show like Hard Knocks can have on a football team, Lewis said the film crew is only there to do a job, just like his team: "It's really not all you wish, but people think it's more than it is. These guys bust their tail to do their job. You get to know them and they're out here. If someone is moving, they're working and following them. Then they try to put a show together."
Lewis added that if the Falcons wanted the show, he'll gladly trade them, adding that it wouldn't require a blockbuster, Julio Jones type of trade to make it happen.
3. A New Game: Last year didn't go Lamar Holmes' way. An injury shortly after he was drafted changed his offseason and the offensive tackle didn't get nearly the work he wanted. A year later, Holmes is in a battle for the right tackle position with Mike Johnson and he's recently been seeing more reps with offensive starters. With the increased reps, Holmes sees Thursday's game against the Bengals as an opportunity unlike any he's had so far: "It's even more exciting for me. I didn't get to do anything last year. This year I finally get to come out and play this year in the Dome. It's the type of excitement you can't explain or put into words. It's a feeling and an experience that I didn't get to see last year."
- Ten Days And Counting: Ten days ago the Falcons began camp and Desmond Trufant was instantly learning hard lessons as a rookie trying to cover one of two Pro Bowlers. There was no break on the rookie and his early trials were well documented. What's changed in 10 days? A lot, according to Trufant and to daily observers at camp, he's telling the truth. Trufant's experienced a steady transition into a solid ball player and he continues on that path. Trufant said on Monday, learning the scheme has opened up his ability on the field: "I've learned so much. I've grown in the scheme and the playbook. It's allowed me to play faster and aggressive. I've definitely improved."
5. Five Quick Thoughts: Monday's practice was a busy one with 180 football players on three fields, two coaching staffs and more than a few film crews. There was a lot to see and here are five quick pieces of information:
- Robert James and Akeem Dent spent time as first-team linebackers.
- Cliff Matthews is strong. Very strong. His bull rush from the middle was tough for the interior offensive line of the Bengals to handle.
- Robert Alford rotated reps at various times with Asante Samuel and at one point in coverage drills he had an interception off a jumped route around the 20-yard line that he was able to return easily for a score.
- William Moore got a treat on Monday during warm-ups. The event staff played one of his songs, W.A.R. and of course he and his secondary mates sang along. Moore released a second version called "World War II" over the weekend.
- During positional drills, defensive coordinator Mike Nolan asked defensive line coach Ray Hamilton for permission to use Kroy Biermann in some linebacker drills. The defensive end has been working out as a hybrid player in Nolan's scheme again this year, jumping back and forth from linebacker to end.