Coach Dan Quinn said Friday that Freeman (groin) remains a candidate to return from injured reserve this season, Jason Butt of The Athletic reports.
The Falcons placed Freeman on injured reserve back on Oct. 16 after it was revealed that he would require surgery to address a lingering groin injury. Freeman, who had been away from the team for much of the past two months while conducting his rehab in Philadelphia, is now back in Atlanta and is being evaluated on a week-to-week basis, per D. Orlando Ledbetter of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Freeman is eligible to return from IR ahead of Week 15, but with the running back having yet to resume practicing yet, a return over the final two weeks of the regular season is probably a more realistic goal. Even that might be overly ambitious, given that the Falcons are 4-8 and may not be inclined to bring back Freeman if a playoff bid isn't in reach.
Coach Dan Quinn said Thursday that Freeman (groin/foot) is a candidate to return from injured reserve later in the season, Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com reports.
By virtue of being placed on injured reserve Tuesday, Freeman will have to miss at least the next eight weeks, making the Falcons' Dec. 23 game against the Panthers in Week 16 the earliest date he could return. Quinn noted that the Falcons' standing in the NFC playoff picture would likely dictate whether Freeman is activated, but the expectation is that the running back will be fully recovered from both injuries by late December. While it was a bone bruise in Freeman's foot that sidelined him for the Week 6 win over the Buccaneers, he elected to undergo surgery Thursday to address a groin injury that had also been plaguing him lately. While Freeman is on the mend, both Tevin Coleman and Ito Smith will be in line for enhanced roles out of the backfield.
Freeman will undergo groin surgery on Thursday in Philadelphia, Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com reports.
Coach Dan Quinn went into detail about Freeman's health Tuesday, when the running back was placed on IR. "Following the game against Pittsburgh, where Devonta injured his foot, we thought he was just having general soreness in his groin area," Quinn told Will McFadden of the Falcons' official site. "As the week went on it continued so we decided to have him get some tests. It has been determined that he will need a procedure that will result in us placing him on injured reserve. We are hopeful he will be able to return this season, but we will have a better feel for that in the coming weeks." As Quinn noted, Freeman will have a chance to return this season, which could happen as early as Week 15 versus the Cardinals. While Freeman focuses on his recovery, the Falcons will continue to use Tevin Coleman as the primary back and Ito Smith in a complementary role.
Freeman is slated for groin surgery and will be placed on injured reserve, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.
The impetus for the roster move has come to light, with surgery ordered up on the groin injury that emerged late last week. Freeman must spend eight weeks on IR before he can be considered for activation to the 53-man roster, meaning he may be able to return as early as Week 15 against the Cardinals if his recovery goes off without a hitch. In the meantime, Tevin Coleman will serve as the Falcons' No. 1 back while Ito Smith handles change-of-pace work.
Freeman has been "week-to-week" for some time, so he'll now have plenty of time to heal up for a potential return late in the season. Moving forward, the Falcons backfield will be composed of Tevin Coleman and Ito Smith.
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