Early observations on the Atlanta Falcons

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. -- The Atlanta Falcons hosted a joint practice with the Jacksonville Jaguars on Monday morning. They have another session this afternoon and two more Tuesday.

I’ll have much more on the Falcons coming along and am waiting to sit down for an interview with coach Mike Smith sometime before the afternoon session in which I plan to gather stuff for our Camp Confidential segment on Atlanta, which is scheduled to run next week.

In the meantime, here are a few early observations on the Falcons.

  • Rookie Sean Weatherspoon was working at weakside linebacker with the first team in the drills I saw this morning. That’s the position veteran Mike Peterson held last season. But I was told not to read too much into one practice. The Falcons also have been giving Weatherspoon a lot of work on the strong side, where Stephen Nicholas is the incumbent. It doesn’t sound like the Falcons have made a decision on an exact plan for Weatherspoon yet.

  • Peria Jerry’s recovery from a knee injury that cost him most of his rookie year has been a topic of conversation throughout the offseason. Again, it was only one practice, but Jerry looked fine to me this morning. The Falcons are bringing him along cautiously and giving him some practices off. But all indications I’m getting are that he’ll be fully ready for the regular season.

  • Another guy coming back from injury is receiver Harry Douglas. It now has been more than a year since he tore his anterior cruciate ligament. I interviewed Douglas after practice for an upcoming post and he said he’s fine physically. More importantly, Douglas looked to be completely fine on the field and back to where he was before the injury.

  • One rookie I’m watching closely is receiver Kerry Meier. He’s a fifth-round draft pick, so expectations are mild. However, the Falcons quietly are excited by what they’ve seen so far. One team official, who has been at every practice, told me he has yet to see Meier drop a pass.

  • I’ll be back with more observations on the Falcons after the afternoon session.