By Chris Vivlamore
FLOWERY BRANCH – Julio Jones led a list of Falcons who did not practice Wednesday. Jones’ injured left hamstring kept him out of last week’s game against the Panthers. The Falcons have a bye week following Sunday’s game against the Lions and should the rookie wide receiver miss that game he would have three weeks of recovery time.
Falcons coach Mike Smith would not rule Jones out of Sunday’s game.
“Julio is the kind of guy who is going to push the envelope,” Smith said. “He wants to get back in there. We are going to have to make sure the people in the athletic performance department and the doctors make the final decision. … We’ll just have to see how the rest of the week goes in terms of his availability for the game.”
John Abraham (groin), Todd McClure (knee), Christopher Owens (concussion), Garrett Reynolds (ankle) and Sam Baker (lower back) also did not practice. The Falcons had hoped Owens would practice, but he has not yet been cleared after recently passing the second stage of the concussion protocol. Smith reiterated that some players would be held out of practice as part of a maintenance program.
Jonathan Babineaux (knee), Tony Gonzalez (elbow) and Roddy White (knee) were limited participants. James Sanders (hamstring) returned to practice.
–D. Orlando Ledbetter, The Atlanta Falcons beat blog