Falcons Adding CB, Starting Left Guard to Injured Reserve: Report

Kendall Sheffield

Getty Kendall Sheffield #20 of the Atlanta Falcons warms up against the Carolina Panthers.

The Atlanta Falcons are placing cornerback Kendall Sheffield on the injured reserve with an undisclosed injury, according to ESPN’s Michael Rothstein.

Sheffield joins the IR alongside projected starting offensive lineman Josh Andrews who has a broken hand.

Sheffield played 13 games for the Falcons last fall and started in nine of them. He’s one of six cornerbacks on the Falcons’ 53-man roster behind A.J. Terrell, Isaiah Oliver and Fabian Moreau.

Rookie corners Darren Hall, who was taken in the fourth round this year, and Avery Williams, who was selected in the fifth round, will have the opportunity to bump up in Sheffield’s place.

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Andrews Was Favorited to Start at Left Guard

Andrews, 30, most recently played for the New York Jets, appearing in 15 games. He started three games at right guard and one at left guard. He was in line to start at left guard for Atlanta this fall.

The Oregon State product originally signed with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2014. He spent three seasons in Philly bouncing back and forth from the practice squad to the 53-man roster.

Following his stint with the Eagles, Andrews spent time with the Minnesota Vikings in 2018. He returned to Philly once again and had a short stint with the Indianapolis Colts’ practice squad before landing with the Jets in 2020.

In five years, Andrews has appeared in 40 games with four starts. He adds veteran experience to a fairly young Falcons interior.


Who Takes Andrews’ Place?

Once again, two rookies are next in line to move up at left guard.

Jalen Mayfield, who was a third-round draft pick from Michigan, could be a candidate to fill in for Andrews after working primarily at tackle during training camp while Kaleb McGary was on the physically unable to perform list.

However, towards the end of camp, he was moved to guard once McGary came back.

“This is only going to help Jalen,” head coach Arthur Smith said via AtlantaFalcons.com. “Having played tackle, now we’re moving him inside, where he played in the spring. I won’t keep mixing and matching. I gave him a couple weeks and now we’re moving him back.

“We also know that, if we’re in dire straits during the season, we can kick him back out there.”

As for Drew Dalman, who was a fourth-round pick from Stanford, spent training camp playing at both center and guard. Matt Hennessey won the starting job at center leaving Dalman’s best bet to see the field at a guard spot.

In both the 2019 and 2020 seasons, Dalman started all 18 games at center for Stanford. He earned himself All-Pac-12 honors from different publications while also earning a degree in mechanical engineering and was named team captain his senior year.

Despite what the depth chart says, Smith’s plan for gameday is to play the best eight players on the offensive line so we could see both Dalman and Mayfield out there at the same time.

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