FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. – The highly anticipated matchup between Richard Sherman and Julio Jones won't being taking place on Monday night.
Sherman ruptured his Achilles last Thursday night and will miss the remainder of the season.
The respect is mutual between Jones and Sherman who enjoy competing against one another – so much so that both said they'd miss the matchup. When Falcons coach Dan Quinn found out about Sherman's injury, he texted the cornerback. Sherman responded by saying tell Jones he'll miss competing against him.
Jones echoed a similar sentiment on Thursday.
"We always have a good time because we go out there and battle each and every play," Jones said. "Sherm is a guy who is going to try and stay on me all game. He comes out and competes every play."
Sherman plays a key role in Seattle's defense and without him, cornerback Jeremy Lane will likely be filling in for him. Seattle also signed a familiar face this week, former Seahawk Byron Maxwell to add depth at the position.
Here's what Quinn had to say about Lane:
"I would expect Jeremy to certainly get some action outside," Quinn said. "He has the ability to play nickel and play outside, so that kind of versatility is good. Very good competitor, very good speed, good ball skills, he's a good tackler."
Kam Chancellor, Seattle's Pro Bowl safety, is currently dealing with a neck injury and Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said on Thursday they didn't know if he would be able to go on Monday night.
So how are the Falcons game planning for Seattle's defense with so many questions surrounding who will play?
"As you go through the preparation, the scheme doesn't change," Quinn said. "As a player, you're looking first thing into the week of how to play against a specific look, a specific technique, or coverage on either side of the ball. As it gets into the individual player, 'Who may guard me or who am I guarding,' and how does that player get off press, how does this player try to press? Those are the things that you look at, and it just takes you through a bigger level of preparation."
Quinn said they'll plan on Chancellor playing until told otherwise so they aren't "caught off guard" if he does play.
Monday night's matchup features the league's No. 15 scoring offense (Atlanta Falcons) against the No. 5 scoring defense (Seattle Seahawks).