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Falcons BREAKING: Atlanta Signs Former Starting QB to Back Up Matt Ryan

The Falcons have engineered this move just 24 hours after the club was forced to place rookie QB Feleipe Franks on the reserve/COVID-19 list on Tuesday.

Forget the mythology. The Atlanta Falcons have added some depth to their quarterback room by claiming Matt Barkley off of waivers on Wednesday afternoon, and they did not do this because Barkley used to play for the Buffalo Bills, this week's Falcons foe.

"Spy Games''? That is not really how this works.


The Falcons have engineered this move just 24 hours after the club was forced to place rookie QB Feleipe Franks on the reserve/COVID-19 list on Tuesday. 

The Falcons have issues in this department in general, as they currently have 12 players on the reserve/COVID-19 list as of 4 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon. But specific to the QB spot? Franks has served in the backup quarterback role on game days throughout the last three weeks, with the Falcons choosing to keep former first-round pick Josh Rosen inactive.

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Rosen at this time remains available to be the No. 2 guy this weekend against the Bills. And Barkley?

The graduate of USC comes to the Falcons via the Carolina Panthers, who just released him after having signed him to their practice squad in early November. Barkley was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in the fourth round of the 2013 NFL Draft, but then spent time with the Cardinals, 49ers, Bengals, Bills and Titans.

His high-watermark year came with the Chicago Bears in 2016, when he made six starts. He ended that 2016 season with eight touchdowns and 14 interceptions.

After six largely unimpressive seasons in the NFL, this is not likely to be a "discovery'' of what Barkley, 31, can do; more probably, it is simply a roster fill-in as Barkley will find himself in a position room led by the former NFL MVP Ryan.