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TheFalcoholic

Chester Retires

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Veteran offensive guard Chris Chester, who started for the Atlanta Falcons the last two seasons, told ESPN Thursday he is retiring from the NFL.

Chester, 34, played 11 seasons with Atlanta, Baltimore, and Washington. The former second-round pick of the Ravens said he plans to expand on his decision to retire at a later time.

Chester started 143 of 169 games he played in during his career. He started 32 regular-season games at right guard for the Falcons the last two seasons, along with three postseason starts during Atlanta's run to Super Bowl LI.

 

Chris Chester was a mainstay on the Falcons line during their run to the Super Bowl. Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Chester played 8,929 career offensive snaps and averaged 1,034 snaps per season over the last six years. He overcame shoulder surgery between the 2015 and 2016 seasons.

The Falcons now need to fill the void at right guard. Coach Dan Quinn expressed confidence in returning players Ben Garland and Wes Schweitzer, although neither has started a game in the NFL. Garland, who has played in 24 career games, is listed as a backup center but showed versatility by playing defensive tackle last season. Schweitzer, a sixth-round draft pick last season, was inactive for every game during his rookie year.

The Falcons are doing work on draft prospects, including top guard Forrest Lamp out of Western Kentucky. They hold the 31st overall pick and could target either an offensive lineman or pass-rusher.

Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff talked about this year's class of guards.

"The guard position, most teams are looking for them and realize the importance of having the ability to fortify their interior to protect the quarterback,'' Dimitroff told ESPN's Mike Reiss. ``We saw first-hand the importance of having a center and two guards that were adept at what they did, and they helped us become a prolific offense. That was very important. I think the group this year, there isn't a big number of guys, but we think there are some guys that can be beneficial to teams and can help shore up the interior. Like any position, they'll need their reps to develop."

The Falcons were the only team with the same five starters on the offensive line all of last season.

 

http://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/19040975/atlanta-falcons-guard-chris-chester-retiring-nfl

Trick Montalban and AndySG like this

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2 minutes ago, Dirtybird3 said:

Schhweeeet-zier! Was he under contract or does this result in any saved money at all? 

He was an UFA - Chester retiring doesnt save the team anything

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Wow I thought he was coming back.  Appreciate his time here.  Wasn't all that great but could have been a lot worse 

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1 hour ago, socalriseup said:

saw some other guy from our ps retired too. bykowski?

Carter Bykowski, signed a reserve/future contract with the Falcons on February 7, 2017. Bykowski announced his retirement  from the NFL on March 31, 2017. Only 26 years old

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I was very skeptical about the remaking of our line in 2015 with the pickup of Chester and Levitre.  Worked like a charm in retrospect.

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Posted (edited)

Well I think our draft just got less exciting and more predictable.  Need a 300 pound dude who is smart, strong, moves well for his size, and doesn't get hurt.

Edited by DogIsYourName
vitaman likes this

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6 minutes ago, DogIsYourName said:

Well I think our draft just got less exciting and more predictable.  Need a 300 pound dude who is smart, strong, moves well for his size, and doesn't get hurt.

Hmmm...so who all are we drafting then?

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1 hour ago, PK Manley said:

Hmmm...so who all are we drafting then?

True -- we still don't know for sure.  But one of our first three picks will be OG.  Not saying I still won't be excited to see it unfold!

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18 minutes ago, DogIsYourName said:

True -- we still don't know for sure.  But one of our first three picks will be OG.  Not saying I still won't be excited to see it unfold!

I hear ya man, but I'm not convinced that they'll necessarily invest heavily to replace Chester, given what we have on the roster currently.  If it was anyone else on the O-line, then yeah, but I think even if they just go with a replacement level player in that spot, the line will still be great.

I didn't really think Chester would be back, so it doesn't change much for me.

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He certainly put together a really solid career.  That's a lot of mileage out of any player.

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This may make Atlanta's first round pick a bit boring for some people, haha. Well, that's IF Lamp is available. If he is, I'm sure he's the pick now.

ratesforless likes this

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Posted (edited)

I will admit that I was skeptical when he was signed here but that's Reason #167,823 why I'm not the GM of this team. He did well and helped them get to the big game. What more could be asked? (I know, too soon).

Good luck and godspeed going forward. Wish him nothing but the best...

Edited by ratesforless

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Wish he could have gone out with a ring. Say what you will about any weak links, our offensive line as a cohesive unit was a huge key (arguably THE key) to our run. 

Wish ya the best, Chester.

ratesforless and dardan like this

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I don't see how this affects our draft at all, he wasn't signed with us in the first place, and nobody in the Falcons organization ever made it seem like we were planning on him returning. 

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