Julio Jones will miss Sunday's game against the Los Angeles Chargers, Falcons coach Raheem Morris announced Friday. Jones's absence is due to a hamstring injury that has plagued him throughout the season and caused him to miss a full week of practice.
This is a blow to Atlanta's offense, which has unsurprisingly looked more explosive with the All-Pro receiver in the lineup. Despite entering last week's matchup against the New Orleans Saints having been listed as questionable, Jones finished the game with six catches for 94 yards. Jones has missed three games this season, and the Falcons have gone 1-2 without him on the field.
Without Jones, the Falcons will turn to Calvin Ridley as their top receiving option against the Chargers. Ridley has performed well in that role this season; in the three games without Jones, Ridley has 19 catches for 296 yards and a touchdown. It may not be easy for Atlanta this weekend, however, as Los Angeles boasts the fifth-best passing defense in the league, giving up just 214.4 yards per game. The Falcons, however, have the sixth-best passing offense and average 270.6 yards per game through the air.