Freeman took a helmet-to-helmet hit in the first quarter of the Falcons’ 27-7 win against the Dallas Cowboys. The team was able to go on without him, with the Cowboys’ offensive line suffering a huge hole with the absence of Tyron Smith. His replacement, Chaz Green, allowed five of Adrian Clayborn’s six sacks on the afternoon.
Freeman tweeted thanks on Twitter for those reaching out to him:
Thanks everyone for the words of encouragement. Health is my priority.— Devonta Freeman (@devontafreeman) November 13, 2017
What does this mean for the Falcons? Freeman’s absence could be big. Tevin Coleman is a good running back, but there’s a reason Freeman became the highest-paid running back in the NFL during the offseason.
Freeman has made the Pro Bowl in the two seasons he’s played since his rookie year, rushing for over 1,000 yards and 11 touchdowns in both years. Coming into Week 10’s game against the Cowboys, he was on pace to match those numbers yet again.
But according to Adam Schefter, it appears that streak could very well be in jeopardy:
While it's unlikely Falcons RB Devonta Freeman will play Monday night at Seattle due to his second concussion of the season, it also would not be surprising to see it turn into a multi-game absence, either.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 13, 2017
Can Tevin Coleman be a formidable replacement? He hasn’t shown that he can’t. Coleman isn’t just talented out of the backfield, but he’s also great in the receiving game. Coleman has averaged 4.6 yards per carry though his career, and had 11 total touchdowns just last season. Against the Cowboys in relief of Freeman, Coleman had 20 carries with 83 yards and one touchdown.
Atlanta’s offense has struggled this season, but it had to have helped getting a win over a Cowboys team that had been playing well as of late. Sure, they were without the best left tackle in football and Ezekiel Elliott, but the Falcons needed any kind of easy win. They’ll try to keep that momentum going into one of the NFL’s toughest environments in Seattle.