Atlanta has hit the practice turf as the Falcons opened their training camp in Flowery Branch, Georgia back on July 25, 2012. Falcons head coach Mike Smith immediately backed up previous reports that RB Michael Turner will be reigned in some during the 2012 NFL season. "I don't envision that Turner will have over 300 carries this season," Smith said. We tend to believe him as Turner enters his ninth season and has hit the 30 something wall.
There are two different schools of thought on this report. One, fantasy owners can view this as a way to keep Tuner (who is in a contract year) fresh throughout the season. His production has dropped off late in the year over the past two seasons. Proof of that comes from the fact that the "Burner" has produced just 33 combined fantasy points in weeks 15 and 16 over the past two seasons. Not good during the Fantasy Playoff weekends!
This can also be viewed as the Falcons sticking to their game plan of getting vertical early and often this season. Being as they reside in the NFC South, airing it out will a necessity as high scoring contests will be common place throughout the division during the NFL 2012. Personally, I am hoping my fellow fantasy owners buy into the downgrade as I believe Turner still has some gas left in the tank and will be a productive RB2 in the Falcons high octane offense.