Coleman and the Falcons may discuss a long-term contract, Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com reports. After the Falcons signed Devonta Freeman to a five-year, $41.25 million extension in August, there was speculation Coleman would be available for trade in the 2018 offseason or else would be one of the major prizes in 2019 free agency. Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff isn't ready to write off Coleman's long-term future with the organization, recently saying he can envision a scenario in which both running backs are handsomely paid. It still seems likely that Coleman could find a larger contract elsewhere, but Freeman's deal isn't so cumbersome as to entirely prevent the Falcons from discussing an extension with Coleman. The 2015 third-round pick dropped off to 4.0 yards per carry last season, but he remained efficient in the passing attack with 7.7 yards per target, while also piling up 223 rushing yards and four touchdowns in a three-game stretch when Freeman missed time with a concussion.
Coleman rushed for 40 yards on 14 carries and added 28 yards on three catches during Saturday's 26-13 win over the Rams. Coleman finished Saturday with just two fewer touches, 19 to 17, than Devonta Freeman as the Falcons went to the ground in an effort to keep the Rams' potent pass rush at bay. Coleman didn't make any wow plays, but his 68 yards marked a high in the five games since Freeman returned from injury, having entered Saturday averaging just 42.5 yards per game since Freeman's return. The 17 touches also represent a high during that span. It's hard to see Coleman having much of an opportunity to improve next weekend against the Eagles. Philly boasted the league's best run defense this season - a full four yards per game better than second-place Minnesota.
Coleman (concussion) doesn't have a designation on the final injury report for Sunday's game in New Orleans. Coleman was a limited practice participant Wednesday and a full participant Thursday and Friday, leaving no doubt about his status for Week 16. He'll return to a complementary role behind Devonta Freeman, who took advantage of Coleman's one-game absence with 27 touches for 194 yards and a touchdown in Monday's 24-21 win over the Buccaneers. Coleman cleared the final hurdle in the concussion protocol Thursday.
Coleman (concussion) was a full practice participant Thursday, Kelsey Conway of the Falcons' official site reports. Just hours after gaining clearance from an independent neurologist, Coleman practiced with limitations for the first time since Dec. 6, putting an end to his two-week journey through the concussion protocol. As a result, the Falcons backfield will be fully operational Sunday at New Orleans, whose defense has surrendered nearly 135 yards from scrimmage per game and 11 touchdowns to running backs this season.
Falcons head coach Dan Quinn said Thursday that Coleman has cleared the concussion protocol, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com reports. Coleman was held out of Monday's 24-21 win over the Buccaneers with the head injury, but after practicing on a limited basis Wednesday without any complications and gaining clearance from an independent neurologist thereafter, the running back doesn't look to be in any danger of missing the Falcons' final two games of the regular season. His health will be validated by a return to full practice Thursday, though the possibility exists that the Falcons will limit Coleman's workload again as a precaution. In any event, look for Coleman to settle back into a complementary role in the backfield Week 16 against the Saints, which will likely translate to a marginal downturn in snaps and touches for lead back Devonta Freeman.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|3||09/23||New Orleans Saints||12||17.22|
|6||10/14||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||29||19.13|
|7||10/23||New York Giants||21||17.88|
|12||11/23||@New Orleans Saints||12||17.22|
|14||12/09||@Green Bay Packers||16||17.38|
|17||12/30||@Tampa Bay Buccaneers||29||19.13|
Red Zone Trends
|3 Year Avg||120||513||5||20||245||2||115|