Mike Johnson has been working as the first-team right tackle at OTAs.
In the battle to replace Tyson Clabo, Johnson has his nose in front of Lamar Holmes. Perhaps the Falcons prefer the more efficient pass blocker over the heavier, mauling Holmes. The competition will continue into training camp.
Second-year pro Peter Konz is expected to be the Falcons' starting center this season.
The 2012 second-rounder is replacing Todd McClure. Konz is facing light competition from Joe Hawley, but coach Mike Smith has made it clear the job is his to lose. "That was the plan when we drafted him," said Smith. Konz struggled at guard last season, so he'll still have to show well in camp to lock things up.
Falcons promoted WRs coach Terry Robiskie to assistant head coach.
Robiskie is one of the most respected receivers coaches in the league, and he's been in the coaching business for 31 seasons. The 58-year-old has been in Atlanta since 2008, and he'll still handle his positional coaching duties. Robiskie has been credited with keeping Roddy White on top of his game as a 31-year-old, and also with the quick development of Julio Jones.
Falcons DE Kroy Biermann could see the majority of his snaps at 3-4 OLB in the team's multiple defense.
The Falcons plan on running a hybrid defense under Mike Nolan, which will feature more 3-4 looks. The team drafted two traditional defensive ends and signed Osi Umenyiora, increasing the odds Biermann will focus on more of "movable" role. Nolan added Biermann is a player he believes can help cover athletic tight ends, implying he may also see time at SAM linebacker in 4-3 alignments.
Falcons coach Mike Smith confirmed second-year FB Bradie Ewing is "100 percent" recovered from last year's ACL tear.
Ewing tore the ACL in Atlanta's preseason opener. "He's way ahead of schedule," said Smith. "I think he's probably better now than he was when he got here in terms of his strength." Ewing projects as Steven Jackson's lead blocker in 2013. Ewing is also athletic enough to be a passing-game asset.
Coach Mike Smith singled out Steven Jackson's ability in the passing game as a "weapon."
Michael Turner, inept as a receiver, totaled 59 catches across five years in Atlanta. During that span, Jackson caught 217 passes. It's just another way the Falcons have upgraded their offense by ditching Turner. "[Jackson] creates issues for defenses," Smith said. "He's a guy that we can use in the passing game. He's not just a running back, he's a receiving back as well." Finally in an offense that can create goal-line opportunities for him, S-Jax is on the fringe of RB1 status.