Amid training camp, the Falcons made a flurry of roster moves, including placing Eddie Goldman on the exempt/left squad list after just returning to the team this offseason, along with the signings of Justin Ellis, Kemoko Turray, and Godwin Igwebuike.
The 29-year-old Goldman returned to the Falcons after signing with the club in July of last year before retiring about two weeks later. He came out of retirement in March and reported to training camp but never practiced. Then, on Friday, Arthur Smith announced Goldman might retire for a second time.
The decision this go around is a lot less of a big deal than last year. Goldman was expected to be a significant part of the defensive line rotation in 2022, but that’s no longer the case. His place on the final 53-man roster wasn’t even solidified. He would’ve had to beat out the likes of Timmy Horne, who went undrafted last year but started a couple of games towards the end of the 2022 campaign and was constantly praised for his progress.
To replace Goldman’s spot on the roster, Atlanta signed defensive tackle Justin Ellis, who most recently appeared for the Giants after being selected in the fourth round of the 2014 draft by the Raiders. Ellis has a lot of experience, starting 54 contests and appearing in 117 for New York, Oakland/Las Vegas, and Baltimore.
Moreover, the Falcons signed Turay, who the club hosted on a free agent visit last offseason before he decided to play for the 49ers. He spent the first four seasons with the Colts and has totaled 12 sacks and 29 QB hits over his five seasons, appearing in 41 games over that period. Injuries have limited his impact, but this is a guy worth keeping an eye on.
And finally, Igwebuike gives the Falcons another body in the running back room. Most recently, he appeared in five contests last year with the Seahawks, posting just four rush yards but tallying 308 yards on 11 kickoff returns. Given the injuries to Caleb Huntley and Avery Williams, this signing makes a ton of sense. Expect a ton of Carlos Washington Jr. and Igwebuike in the preseason for the Falcons with the latter competing for a special teams role as well.
Photographer: Patrick Gorski/Icon Sportswire