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RB Gray Makes Strong First Impression in Atlanta


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Posted Aug 22, 2016

Andrew Hirsh

atlantafalcons.com Twitter

 

 

Free agent signing Cyrus Gray has joined a crowded backfield in Atlanta, and while he doesn’t have much time to earn a permanent job with the Falcons, he got off to an impressive start against the Browns

The night before Atlanta’s preseason opener, the Falcons were gathering at a hotel when their newest teammate, Cyrus Grayicon-article-link.gif, arrived and introduced himself.

It was not an ideal time to join a new franchise. All of Gray’s competition at running back had been immersed in Kyle Shanahan’s scheme throughout the offseason; less than a week of training camp remained. Getting up to speed, and building a strong case for the 53-man roster, would require some fast learning.

Gray made sure to absorb information as quickly as possible. He dedicated himself to the playbook, and he spent a lot of one-on-one time with running backs coach Bobby Turner.

That effort paid immediate dividends: Gray turned in a solid debut with the Falcons, earning 18 rushes for 76 yards – a 4.2 average – against Cleveland, helping the Falcons win their second-consecutive game of 2016.

“His opportunity was there, and he took it,” head coach Dan Quinn said about Gray. “So now, it’s like, ‘Hey man, you’ve shown it. So what can you do now on (special) teams? What can you do to back this performance up?’ Because he showed that he can do it. He looked healthy, he looked quick. I came away really impressed.”

Gray’s longest run of the night, an 11-yard sprint, illustrated why he is equipped to succeed in Atlanta’s outside-zone offense: After taking a handoff from Matt Simmsicon-article-link.gif, he sidestepped a would-be tackler at the line of scrimmage, found an open lane and cut downfield for a first down.

“He can stick his foot in the ground and get vertical,” Quinn said. “So in the scheme, it’s one gap at a time. … That’s what this (offense) is about: making a decision and getting vertical. And he has the speed to do it.”

Gray’s sudden emergence has made a fierce position battle even more complex. Between him, Brandon Wildsicon-article-link.gif, Gus Johnsonicon-article-link.gif and Terron Wardicon-article-link.gif, the Falcons have no shortage of options for the No. 3 RB job. And with only two games left before the regular season begins, this storyline should only get more compelling in the next several weeks.

 

 

 

 

http://www.atlantafalcons.com/news/blog/article-1/RB-Gray-Makes-Strong-First-Impression-in-Atlanta/1341cd50-0dc7-4b93-8f8a-4cc34f57655c

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Good read, I was impressed with him too. Going back to something Quinn said, 'it's one gap at a time, this offense is about making a decision and getting vertical'  I see that as really the ONLY thing holding Coleman back from really being explosive, he seems to have a bit of trouble reading and seeing the lanes/creases. That video RandomFan found the other day and posted explained it very well....

 

but I can see Gray getting a good shot at making the 53, hopefully he's got some strong game in ST play and that will help him

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12 minutes ago, HASHBROWN3 said:

He looked good.  But he'll have to light it up for two more games to unseat Wilds imo...

Wilds ain't going to sit quietly.  Props to this kid.  We're going to have some tough cuts across the board this year!

Wilds' 6'2" and 220 works for me....

Edited by Tim Mazetti
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55 minutes ago, papachaz said:

Good read, I was impressed with him too. Going back to something Quinn said, 'it's one gap at a time, this offense is about making a decision and getting vertical'  I see that as really the ONLY thing holding Coleman back from really being explosive, he seems to have a bit of trouble reading and seeing the lanes/creases. That video RandomFan found the other day and posted explained it very well....

 

but I can see Gray getting a good shot at making the 53, hopefully he's got some strong game in ST play and that will help him

Gray definitely won me over with his effort against Cleveland. I really hope he can stick on the roster. If we let him go he'll get a call from some other team the same day.

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45 minutes ago, ATLFalcons11 said:

What the article pointed out what many may not be taken into consideration is that Gray is fresh into the scheme and still showed a heck of a lot of skill.

I truly don't think he is as far away from Wilds as some may think.

I don't think he is that far behind Wilds either.

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2 minutes ago, Door Gunner said:

I like Gray and Wilds over Coleman at the moment. However, I want to see them both play against the 1s. 

Wow, the RBs are good, hugh? I DO want Coleman to succeed. I love his speed. But if he can't get the vision thingy thing down....may be a career backup.

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2 hours ago, ATLFalcons11 said:

What the article pointed out what many may not be taken into consideration is that Gray is fresh into the scheme and still showed a heck of a lot of skill.

I truly don't think he is as far away from Wilds as some may think.

I totally agree, I think this battle is one of the most intriguing for the team. Both have looked great and its nothing but good for the team, and players. Because whichever gets cut, will make another team.

  

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