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FLOWERY BRANCH Michael Jordan Jersey , Ga. (AP) — Takkarist McKinley should be next in the line of the second-year breakout players on the Atlanta Falcons’ defense.He knows he needs to be healthy to make that next step and now he’s trying to move past another shoulder injury.McKinley has had surgeries on both shoulders the last two years — the right following his 2016 season at UCLA and the left following his 2017 rookie season with the Falcons.A new problem, a bruised right shoulder, has prevented the second-year defensive end from participating in team drills for most of the start of training camp. He again was limited to individual drills on Monday.The Falcons say there’s no structural problem, but McKinley’s status is uncertain for Atlanta’s preseason opener at the New York Jets on Friday night.McKinley said Monday he’s never happy “when you’re not out there on the field. When I play football, I’m not trying to be on the sideline, I’m trying to be out there on the field.”Coach Dan Quinn said “Takk” could be cleared for full participation on Tuesday, so he hasn’t been ruled out for the game against the Jets.The Falcons likely will take a cautious approach with McKinley, the 2017 first-round pick whose health is a key to continued improvement by the defense.He had six sacks as a rookie backup in 2017. The Falcons hope he can earn a starting job and emerge as another player who makes significant progress in his second year.“It will happen with Takk,” Quinn said Monday. “We’ll see that jump from him.”McKinley said Quinn has talked with him about how the team’s other projected starting defensive end http://www.raidersauthorizedshops.com/authentic-hunter-renfrow-jersey , Vic Beasley Jr., led the NFL with 15 1/2 sacks in 2016, his second season. Quinn also told McKinley about safety Keanu Neal and linebackers Deion Jones and De’Vondre Campbell earning Pro Bowl honors in their second seasons and defensive tackle Grady Jarrett also breaking out in his second year.“But just because they had a good second year don’t guarantee that I’ll have a good second year,” McKinley said. “The sophomore slump is a huge thing.“Obviously I’m trying to be on the good side, not the slump side. It’s one of those things where you’ve got to prove yourself to be better.”McKinley actually proved a lot as a rookie. After his six sacks in the regular season, he added two more in the playoffs.“Looking back I should have had at least 13 sacks if I had finished,” he said, adding he missed opportunities when he would “reach out with your arms instead of wrapping up.”Adrian Clayborn led the Falcons with 9 1/2 sacks last season before signing with New England. Clayborn’s departure opens the way for McKinley and Beasley, now a full-time end after spending time at outside linebacker last season Zach Brown Jersey , to be the starting ends.Even when he’s not on the practice field, McKinley said he’s preparing for the bigger workload as a starter.“When I’m not there on 11 on 11, I’m trying to stay in shape and do things inside to get me prepared for the reps I’m going to have this season,” he said. “That’s probably the biggest thing, just understanding that I’m going to be playing more.”NOTES: Former six-time Pro Bowl receiver Chad Johnson visited practice and posed for a photo with Falcons receivers Julio Jones, Mohamed Sanu and Calvin Ridley. … The Falcons have ruled out PK Matt Bryant (undisclosed injury) and OT Ty Sambrailo (right hand) for the preseason opener. Bryant, 44, was on the field during part of the practice. Quinn said Bryant “is coming along quickly but he’s not there yet.” The cast of characters is obviously different in Chargers camp.But the guys getting their chances in the absence of holdout running back Melvin Gordon know their approach has to be the same.While Gordon’s still in search of the kind of payday the Chargers don’t seem inclined to give him, Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson are getting used to carrying a heavier load.“I mean Shareef Miller Jersey , even if he was here, we have the same mentality,” Ekeler said of Gordon, via the . “If he’s here, we still have to move forward. If he’s not here, we still have to move forward.”Ekeler ran five times for 40 yards in the preseason opener, but lost a fumble. Jackson ran five times for 22 yards and a touchdown. Those numbers aren’t bad (other than the fumble, fumbles are bad), but they’re obviously not the same without Gordon.At the moment Devin Bush Jersey , no one knows whether or when Gordon might show up, so they have to say all the right things.“I don’t know that scenario. Like I said, we miss Melvin,” offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt said. “I think Melvin’s a hell of a football player, but we’re working with the guys that are here and they’re doing a nice job.”And unless the performances get markedly worse, Gordon doesn’t seem to be gaining any more leverage.

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