The Atlanta Falcons lost defensive tackle Grady Jarrett early in the Week 8 matchup against the Tennessee Titans. The Falcons will not have him for the rest of the season either.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported on Monday that Jarrett has suffered a season-ending torn ACL.
Jarrett will be a huge loss for the Falcons defense. A two-time Pro Bowler and 2019 second-team All-Pro, Jarrett had 23 combined tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 8 quarterback hits and 1.5 sacks in eight games this season.
Last season, the defensive tackle had 61 combined tackles, 12 tackles for loss and 6 sacks. He still isn’t well know around the league, but in Atlanta, he’s regarded as one of the NFL’s most underrated players.
Furthermore, Jarrett is a significant loss from a leadership standpoint. Atlantafalcons.com’s Tori McElhaney called him “the heart, soul and undisputed leader of the Falcons defense.”
The good news, if there is any, is the Falcons have more defensive line depth this year than in past seasons. Without Jarrett, Atlanta will turn to veterans Calais Campbell and David Onyemata for more production.
Ta’Quon Graham and LaCale London, who the Falcons signed from the practice squad last week, will likely be Jarrett’s direct replacements.
Graham had 2 combined tackles and 1 quarterback hit in Week 8 against the Titans. LaCale played 41 defensive snaps Sunday but didn’t record a statistic.
Jarrett is in his ninth NFL season, all of which he has spent with the Falcons. Atlanta drafted him at No. 137 overall in the 2015 NFL draft.
In 135 career NFL games, he has posted 443 combined tackles, 68 tackles for loss and 34 sacks. He also has 6 pass defenses, 5 forced fumbles and 3 fumble recoveries.
Jarrett was in his second season when he posted 3 sacks and 48 combined tackles to help the Falcons reach the Super Bowl in 2016.
This season will be the first time Jarrett doesn’t play at least 14 games.