Falcons running back Devonta Freemandisplayed concussion-like symptoms at practice on Sunday. On Monday, head coach Dan Quinn announced Freeman is in the concussion protocol and ruled him out for this weekend's preseason game against the Steelers.
"After taking him inside yesterday where we thought he had heat related (issues), he reported that he had some concussion symptoms," Quinn said, per the Atlanta Journal Constitution. "So, we put him in the protocol for that. He'll be out this week. He may start practicing as we, but we are going to rule him out now."
"We were definitely disappointed that it happened," Quinn said. "But as far as heading into the future, that's out of my hands in terms of the (doctors). Let them handle that. Let's just see how it goes. It's too early to make that -- I'll rule him out for this week for sure but past that? He's not gonna get a ton of reps this preseason. Nor is Matt (Ryan) or Julio (Jones). We've got real competition at running back and I am trying to find out quite a bit about a number of guys so we'll take it from there."
This is one of the easiest decisions Quinn will have to make in 2017. Freeman should be rested above and beyond doctor recommendations with almost a month to go before the regular-season opener. After forking over $41.25 million over the next five years for Freeman's services, there is absolutely zero reason to insert him back into preseason football. His 2,135 yards and 22 touchdowns over the past two years are more than enough evidence that, when healthy, he'll be fine.