|The Falcons signed FB Mike Cox on Wednesday and released Lousaka Polite. (US Presswire)|
The Falcons released under-performing FB Lousaka Polite on Wednesday and re-signed FB Mike Cox, who was originally cut during training camp.
The move is a sign that coach Mike Smith is trying to shake up the team’s rushing attack despite its significant improvement the past two games.
Cox played nine games with the Falcons last year and served predominantly as Michael Turner’s lead blocker when Turner rushed for 1,340 yards and 11 touchdowns last year.
In the preseason, Cox had two carries and one reception and was beat out for the job by Polite. He’s familiar with the team but has only worked with first-year offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter during this year’s exhibition games.
Polite had five starts on the season but has battled a hamstring injury, which forced C Joe Hawley to play the position. Fullback depth has been an issue with the Falcons since they drafted Bradie Ewing with this year’s fifth-round pick. Ewing was lost for the year when he injured his knee in Atlanta’s first preseason game.
Reynolds to IR: The Falcons placed RG Garrett Reynolds to the team’s injured reserve list on Tuesday due to a lingering back issue that has plagued him the last three weeks.
Reynolds started the first six games before giving way to rookie Peter Konz, the Falcons second-round draft pick out of Wisconsin. Reynolds (6-7, 310 pounds) has played in 28 games over four seasons with Atlanta, including 14 starts. The Falcons signed G Phillipkeith Manley off the practice squad to fill the roster spot.
With Reynolds out and Konz in, the Falcons ground game has seemingly found a spark. In the past two games, the Falcons have averaged 134 rushing yards on the ground as Michael Turner and Jacquizz Rodgers have split time in the backfield. Before replacing Reynolds in the starting lineup, Atlanta was near the bottom of the league in rushing yards, averaging just 86.5 yards per game.
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