Atlanta Falcons release RB Mike Davis after one season

The Atlanta Falcons released running back Mike Davis on Monday, moving on from the only player the franchise signed to a multiyear deal during the 2021 offseason.

Davis, an Atlanta native, tweeted: "I appreciate everything the falcons did for me. I was able to play for my hometown and impact my community. I appreciate the fans and my family."

He had been signed by the franchise before last season with the plan of making him the team's No. 1 running back. It never quite worked out that way for Davis, as he struggled to find a rhythm throughout last season and was eventually passed on the depth chart by Cordarrelle Patterson.

Davis, 29, started eight of 17 games last season, rushing 138 times for 503 yards and three touchdowns while catching 44 passes for 259 yards and one touchdown. Those numbers were all down from his 2020 season with the Carolina Panthers -- where he was a starter for the first time -- and he had 165 carries for 642 yards and six touchdowns.

The Falcons' Walter Payton Man of the Year nominee this past season, Davis has 550 career rushes for 2,034 yards and 14 touchdowns between the Panthers, Seattle Seahawks, San Francisco 49ers, Chicago Bears and Falcons. He was drafted by the 49ers in the fourth round in 2015.

Also Monday, the Falcons picked up the fifth-year option on starting guard Chris Lindstrom's rookie contract but declined the option on starting right tackle Kaleb McGary's deal.

Lindstrom, selected 14th overall in 2019, started all 17 games last season. McGary, picked 31st overall in 2019, started 16 games last season.

In other moves Monday, the Falcons released offensive lineman Willie Beavers and linebacker James Vaughters and put long-snapper Beau Brinkley on injured reserve.