SEATTLE WA - DECEMBER 05: Linebacker Lofa Tatupu #51 of the Seattle Seahawks celebrates with Jay Richardson #99 and Craig Terrill #93 after returning an interception for a touchdown against the Carolina Panthers at Qwest Field on December 5 2010 in Seattle Washington. The Seahawks defeated the Panthers 31-14. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Lofa Tatupu is out for the season with a torn pectoral muscle. This will be the second straight NFL season that the linebacker will miss.
The Atlanta Falcons received some bad news over the weekend. Head coach Mike Smith announced that linebacker Lofa Tatupu, the three-time Pro Bowl selection who did not play due to injury in 2011 after being released by the Seattle Seahawks, suffered another injury in a recent workout.
Jay Adams at the Falcons' official website reports that Tatupu has suffered a pectoral injury that will knock him out of action for the entire 2012 season. Tatupu had just signed a two-year deal with the Falcons in the offseason, so this is certainly a blow to the team that was hoping to benefit from a bit more depth at linebacker in the fall.
With Tatupu set to receive surgery to repair a torn pectoral muscle, it is now likely that second-year player Akeem Dent will win the starting middle linebacker spot by default. The Falcons begin their training camp this week. It is uncertain whether they will dip back into free agency in search of a replacement for Tatupu before the season kicks off.