The high-flying Falcons offense will be without its best receiver.
Julio Jones’ hamstring isn’t quite ready, as ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweets Jones is OUT for today’s game against the Bears. Jones has been battling a troublesome hamstring since training camp. And while he put up big numbers (9-157) in Week 1, it limited him in Week 2, and will ultimately keep him out of today’s matchup. Atlanta still features Calvin Ridley, Russell Gage, and Hayden Hurst as premier pass-catchers hauling in the pigskin from Matt Ryan, but the dynamic is different without Jones.
Jones isn’t the only starter missing in action for Atlanta:
Cornerback Kendall Sheffield, safety Ricardo Allen, tackle Kaleb McGary, linebacker Foye Oluokun, and defensive end Takk McKinley are all starters at the top of their respective depth charts. Altogether, that’s six starters out of the lineup (seven, if you tack on A.J. Terrell’s COVID-related absence).
Simply put, this is a game the Bears need to win. Because even though this is a must-win game for the Falcons, it’s the Bears who have everything going in their favor entering this showdown. They’re playing good football, motivated, and are far healthier than their opponents. This isn’t to say the Falcons should be overlooked. They shouldn’t be. But things couldn’t have lined up any better for a Bears team that needs all the early season breaks it can get.
As for the Bears’ inactive players:
— Chicago Bears (@ChicagoBears) September 27, 2020