On Friday Atlanta Falcons head coach Arthur Smith said defensive tackle Eddie Goldman retiring was “a great possibility.”
It’s no coincidence then that reports surfaced Friday evening that the Falcons planned to sign big defensive lineman Justin Ellis.
“The Falcons are signing veteran DT Justin Ellis, source said, after his workout today,” Ian Rapoport reported on Twitter. “The man they call Big Jelly is looking at Year 10 in the NFL. He spent last year with the Giants.”
Listed at 6’2 and 350 pounds, Ellis is a massive-run stuffing defender in the middle of a defensive line.
Originally a fourth-round draft pick of the Oakland Raiders, Ellis spent five years in Oakland. He then spent three seasons with the Baltimore Ravens before playing last year with the New York Giants.
Ellis started 14 games for the Raiders in 2014 and 2017. He was mostly a reserve for the Ravens and Giants but started eight games in three seasons in Baltimore and four games last year with New York.
His best season came in Oakland in 2017 when he had 48 tackles. Last season with the Giants he saw action in all 17 games and had 22 tackles and a sack.
Goldman joined the Atlanta Falcons prior to last season and retired in the summer. He reached out to the Falcons staff and said he wanted to return this year, but it doesn’t look like he’ll ever play a down in Atlanta.
The Falcons have been a little thin in the trenches without Goldman and new-signee Calais Campbell. Smith said on Friday that Campbell could take close to two weeks before he returns.