UPDATE 8:20 a.m.
The Falcons have reached an injury settlement with Justin Peelle, the team confirmed. An announcement will be made later today.
JACKSONVILLE – The Falcons are expected to announce that they have reached an injury settlement with tight end Justin Peelle.
He suffered a knee injury in the exhibition season opener against Miami.
“Peelle has been a big part of our offense since we’ve gotten here,” Falcons coach Mike Smith said. “We have a lot of things that are based on tight end play. We try to have at least three tight ends on our roster.”
The Falcons signed Reggie Kelly on Tuesday to takeover Peelle role as the No. 2 tight end behind Tony Gonzalez.
Michael Palmer, Marquez Branson, Ryan Winterswyk and A.J. Simmons are the other tight ends on the roster.
Peelle, 32, was signed by the Falcons on August 31, 2008 and played a few days later in the season opener against Detroit.
Last season, he played in 13 games and caught 10 passes for 96 yards and one touchdown.
In 2009, he played in 15 games and caught 12 passes for 115 yards and two touchdowns.
In 2008, he played in 16 games and caught 15 passes for 159 yards and two touchdowns.
“Justin has been a guy that has made a lot of plays for us over the last few years,” Smith said. “It’s unfortunate for us right now that he’s not going to be able to participate.”
Palmer was the team’s No. 3 tight end last season.
“Peelle does a lot of things in this offense that a lot of people don’t realize,” Palmer said. “Being able to learn from him has been great. He’s kind of the unsung hero of the tight end group.”
After Peelle recovers, he could be re-signed after Week 10.
–D. Orlando Ledbetter, The Atlanta Falcons beat blog