• October 8, 2018 at 3:49 am

    <div id=”content_id”>Julio Jones did not take a snap in preseason and the two-time All-Pro receiver is not the least bit concerned.When the Atlanta Falcons visit Philadelphia to open the NFL schedule on Thursday night Luke Glendening Jersey , Jones says he will be fully healthy to face the defending champions.

    After playing through a hip flexor, a back injury and an ankle injury last year, Jones says he feels better than he has to begin a season since 2015, the breakthrough year that stands as his best statistically.

    Coach Dan Quinn held Jones and two-time Pro Bowl running back Devonta Freeman out of preseason games to avoid potential injuries. Freeman was sidelined twice by concussions last year. Jones has undergone right foot surgery twice and was on the injury report for much of 2017.

    Jones and Freeman have not missed practice since training camp began six weeks ago.

    “Q has the utmost respect for us and confidence in us that we’ll be ready to go,” Jones said Monday.

    “He put it in our corner to come out here at practice and just go full speed and make it like game-time. Once you go out here and practice like that, the game will be easy for you.”

    Despite the injuries, Jones did not miss a game last season, catching 88 passes for 1,444 yards to help the Falcons earn a wild-card playoff victory before the season ended the following week on fourth-and-goal at the 2 in Philadelphia.

    The last play fell flat. As quarterback Matt Ryan rolled right, Jones was lined up opposite cornerback Jalen Mills. Jones fell down and had trouble getting back up with Mills draping him, but got to his feet again as Ryan prepared to target him in the right corner of the end zone.

    Jones turned to face Ryan and jumped higher than Mills, but the ball sailed through his hands . The Eagles went on to win the Super Bowl. Atlanta, which lost the Super Bowl in stunning fashion the year before, went home disappointed.

    “They’re all right, they’re all right Womens Greg Olsen Jersey ,” Jones said when asked about Philadelphia’s secondary. “They can cover well. We played them last year, and they were victorious. But that was last year. We don’t speak on last year and things like that.”

    Jones had an unusual offseason, skipping a mandatory minicamp and sending word that he wanted a new contract entering the third season of a five-year, $71.5 million deal.

    The Falcons made a slight adjustment and promised to discuss the situation in 2019 and get Jones a contract that ranks among the best at his position. He reported to camp on time.

    Entering his eighth year, Jones has a chance to become the first receiver in history with at least 80 catches and 1,400 yards receiving in five straight seasons.

    But he caught only three touchdown passes last year, his career low in a full season, and the Falcons were criticized for not getting him the ball enough in the red zone.

    Ryan targeted him 22 times inside the 20-yard line, but Jones had just six catches.

    “I’m going to go out there and put my best foot forward and give my all,” Jones said. “It doesn’t matter what it is. I’m not a stat person. I’m just trying to go out there and try to be the best teammate I can be.”

    COSTA MESA, Calif. (AP) — Melvin Gordon got into an argument recently with a fan who insisted he was Todd Gurley.

    The Los Angeles Chargers‘ durable running back doesn’t look a whole lot like his Los Angeles Rams counterpart. That didn’t dissuade the fan, he recalled with a grimace.

    “I’m just starting to figure out that people just see a man with dreads and muscles and be like, ‘Oh, he’s such and such,’” Gordon said. “Because I get called Derrick Henry Vontae Davis Jersey , too, and I don’t even look close to Derrick Henry, or Todd. … Sometimes you can be understandable, but when you argue with me about being that person, that’s when it’s an issue.”

    Heading into his fifth season in the Chargers’ backfield and his second year in LA, Gordon is poised to make sure everybody knows his name this fall.

    Gordon got better as last season went on for the Chargers, becoming fresher and more dangerous during their late surge into the playoff race. Looking back, Gordon realizes he improved because he got healthier — so he took steps to make sure he would be fresh from the start of training camp for the grind of the regular season.

    “I’m trying to do the most I can, because you never know,” Gordon said. “I feel good. I haven’t been feeling like this in a while now, for about a couple of years, and I’ve just been having to push through it. I think that little time I took off kind of helped me out a lot.”

    Gordon stayed away from the Chargers during part of organized team activities this year, altering his offseason preparations to keep himself fresh. He picked up a nagging knee injury early last season while pushing himself to impress first-year coach Anthony Lynn, and his season picked up speed only when the knee began to heal. His final five games of the season were outstanding, and he finished as the NFL’s seventh-leading rusher with a career-high 1 Womens Charlie McAvoy Jersey ,105 yards and eight touchdowns.

    Gordon credits his improved health for the surge, but also his mental toughness.

    “I’ve always felt like it’s a mindset really toward the end of the year, how you approach it,” Gordon said. “Some guys go through those first eight weeks of the season, guys that are excited to play, excited to put on the uniform, but then it gets old. Then guys are trying to stay healthy, and then guys that were coming in trying to make those tackles aren’t really trying to make those tackles anymore. To me, my mindset is, I’m going to make you pay. You think it’s going to be a breeze your last eight weeks, and I’m going to turn it up.”

    Gordon has steadily evolved as a versatile back in his four NFL seasons since leaving Wisconsin. He also caught 58 passes for 476 yards last year, and he didn’t fumble all year until the season finale.

    “I thought he was healthy. That’s the biggest difference that I saw on Melvin,” Lynn said. “He looked healthy. He had some juice, and he’s a strong guy, has a lot of stamina. As the season went on http://www.officialislanders.com/authentic-adidas-nick-leddy-jersey , he just got stronger.”

    Along with his improved health, Gordon also expects to get a boost from the addition of center Mike Pouncey, a punishing run-blocker for the Miami Dolphins for the past seven seasons. The Chargers had one of the NFL’s worst yards-per-carry averages last season (3.8), and Pouncey could be a key to unlocking longer runs.

    “The way he gets to the second level for those blocks, it’s crazy,” Gordon said.

    The Chargers already picked up Gordon’s fifth-year contract option for 2019, but he knows the upcoming season will have a major impact on the length and size of his next contract — and he isn’t afraid of the scrutiny.

    Gordon realizes that his optimism and enthusiasm can be contagious for the Chargers, but only when he’s healthy and productive. After appearing in all 16 games last fall for the first time in his career, he’s hoping for production to match Gurley or any other running back who kind of looks like him this fall.

    “I just see Melvin running around healthy,” Lynn said. “And when a guy is running around healthy, you know he’s in a different mindset. He’s having fun. He’s enjoying the game.”

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