Falcons lose DE Hageman to fractured wrist http://t.co/SHEXp4IDMg
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Atlanta Falcons second round pick Ra’Shede Hageman has reportedly suffered a hairline fracture in his wrist. As the Falcons move to a 3-4 scheme, the former Minnesota Golden Gopher was and still is expected to be a major contributor up front predominately as one of their defensive end spots. It is possible that Hageman could put a wrist on it in order to grin and bear it, but the Falcons might be better off waiting what could be up to four weeks for the injury to fully recover.
Unfortunately, if Hageman is out, he cannot get reps and really improve from a technical standpoint. Trying to play through it is possible if he can deal with the pain, but hand use is critical for what he needs to do at an end position and it could significantly compromise his effectiveness and technique. Additionally, if he does battle through it, it could cause the recovery to take longer.
The problem with Hageman is that while he is physically outstanding, much of what he lacks is technique and an understanding of his role of a defense, particularly as a run defender. Hopefully, he can get better when it comes to the latter part of that while he recovers but really learning and applying technical knowledge would certainly prove difficult.
The Falcons have neither confirmed the injury nor discussed a timeline, but the best course of action might be to sit him down and try to get him back for week 1 or 2 of the season. The defense has an unfortunate lack of depth at most every level of the defense, so it would make a difficult month for the defense, but might prove the prudent decision in the long run for this season.