clear
Friday April 29th, 2016 7:38PM

Falcons lose Grimes for season with torn Achilles

By The Associated Press
FLOWERY BRANCH -- So much for Atlanta having to worry about playing time for three top cornerbacks. The Falcons lost one of them in their very first game.

Brent Grimes is out for the year after an Achilles tendon injury in a 40-24 win at Kansas City, coach Mike Smith said Monday.

Grimes left in the fourth quarter with what was initially described as a calf injury. After an MRI, it was determined he will need surgery for a torn Achilles, costing Atlanta one of its best coverage players just as the team is beginning preparations to host Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos in a prime-time game.

It wasn't immediately clear how Grimes was hurt or even which leg he injured.

``Obviously it hurts our depth anytime you lose a player of that caliber,'' Smith said. ``Brent has made a number of big plays since we've been here. He's been the cornerstone at that corner position, on both the left and right side. We've got to have that next-man-up mentality. That's how we have to approach it.''

The Falcons appeared to have a wealth of depth at that position after trading for four-time Pro Bowler Asante Samuel during the offseason. In fact, some wondered how the Falcons would keep everyone happy, since they already had Grimes and Dunta Robinson at the corner spots.

New defensive coordinator Mike Nolan planned to make it work by moving Robinson inside and going with a nickel package most of the time, which was evident in the first game. The Falcons started all three corners and used their base defense two corners and Akeem Dent at middle linebacker on just 11 snaps.

Now, the luxury of having three top cornerbacks in the pass-happy NFC South is gone.

``We felt like adding a corner gave us three number one cornerbacks,'' Smith said. ``Unfortunately, after the first game, we've had an injury. We'll have to adjust and we will adjust. Some guys will get an opportunity to play. I know they're looking forward to it and I know they will go out and complete.''

But the Falcons have no one on the bench who can match Grimes' skills. He was a Pro Bowler in the 2010 season and got the franchise tag this past offseason when he couldn't agree on a new contract, receiving a salary of $10.2 million.

Christopher Owens seems most likely to step up, but he's yet to live up to what the Falcons expected after picking him in the third round of the 2009 NFL draft. The only other cornerbacks on the roster are Robert McClain, who is with his third team in three years, and Dominique Franks, who was actually cut by Atlanta during the preseason but was brought back before the opener.

Suddenly, a strong point looks vulnerable.
© Copyright 2016 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Tech beats Southern California in Sun Bowl
Tevin Washington threw a touchdown pass and ran for another score to help Georgia Tech beat Southern California 21-7 on Monday in the Sun Bowl.
5:54PM ( 3 years ago )
Top 10 sports stories of the year: 2012 one for the history books
2012 has been all things to all people in the sports world. The last 12 months have run the gamut of emotions and given fans and spectators much to awe, rue and everything in between.
2:33PM ( 3 years ago )
College Football Hall to break ground in Atlanta
Groundbreaking for the new College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta will be Jan. 28 and the museum is scheduled to open in the fall of 2014.
2:15PM ( 3 years ago )
Sports
Williams, Horford pace Hawks past Indiana
Lou Williams had 21 points and a career-high 12 assists, Al Horford added 20 points and the Atlanta Hawks won their fourth straight, 109-100 over the Indiana Pacers on Saturday night.
10:19PM ( 3 years ago )
Gwinnett wallops Greenville, 6-2
Five different Gladiators racked up multiple points, as Gwinnett dominated the Greenville Road Warriors 6-2 Saturday night at the BI-LO Center to move into a tie atop the South Division with Greenville.
10:05PM ( 3 years ago )
Teague leads Hawks past Cavaliers, 102-94
Jeff Teague scored a career-high 27 points and the Atlanta Hawks scored the game's final nine points to beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 102-94 on Friday night.
10:26PM ( 3 years ago )
Professional Sports
(VIDEO) Baseball: Red Elephants try to erase memories of 2015 finish, recent adversity as 2016 playoffs begin
Gainesville baseball coach Jeremy Kemp put it very succinctly earlier this week as the Red Elephants prepared to open the Class AAAAA state playoffs on Friday in a doubleheader against Alexander at Ivey-Watson Field...
3:06PM ( 4 hours ago )
Soccer playoffs: Northeast Georgia squads continue stellar start to postseason
While the first two days of the state soccer playoffs proved strong for northeast Georgia programs, Thursday was downright dominant. Eight area programs clinched second round berths during the night, including a pair of statement victories.
By AccessWDUN Staff
12:20PM ( 7 hours ago )
(VIDEO) Boys soccer: East Hall boys make statement in first round win
For about 20 minutes Thursday in East Hall’s first round Class AAA playoff matchup with Gordon Central, Leo Toledo and Sergio Turcios played a two-man game that no one else was allowed to participate in.
12:11PM ( 7 hours ago )
Russell Fleeman scores Hartwell Limited Late Model win
Former asphalt Late Model champion Russell Fleeman showed again on Saturday night he knows his way around a dirt track.
10:00AM ( 9 hours ago )
Carl Edwards looks for third straight Sprint Cup win
Carl Edwards has long advocated for NASCAR implementing a lower downforce aerodynamics package for it race cars.
By NASCAR Wire Service
8:00AM ( 11 hours ago )