Step away from that ledge Falcons fans, we have our first free agent visit lined up! I am almost in a state of shock that D. Orlando Ledbetter said Atlanta should look at Marcus McNeill… and it is actually happening.
McNeill plans to visit Atlanta next week hopefully to help shore up a left tackle spot that has been as successful as the Hindenburg.
Marcus receives a playful elbow to the throat from our very own John Abraham.
McNeill is a two time Pro Bowler who has protected Phillip Rivers for years. At 6’7″, 336lbs, the man is a monster on the field, and has been a premium player.
The problem is his injury history. He has only managed to play 20 of the last 32 games. Only 28 years old, McNeill has had neck and back problems that have been thought to be degenerative, but San Diego was likely going to get rid of him either way due to $10+ million salary this year.
He has since been cleared by neck and spine specialists, and is, apparently, 100% healthy. If healthy, McNeill could be an important piece to finally adding some consistency and much needed protection for this offense.
Update: The DLed curse strikes again! Jeff Schultz of the AJC said there is no visit set up, however, McNeill and his agent want to visit with Dimitroff.
Update II: I tracked down the original article, in which Dave Birkett spoke to McNeill. Here is what he wrote:
Marcus McNeill plans to visit the Falcons and Chiefs next week. He took a physical w/Lions, said he was cleared a week ago to play
— Dave Birkett (@davebirkett) March 16, 2012
Of course he also said McNeill was “unexpectedly” released, even though he has been expected to be released for months.
Update III: Schultz seems pretty confident this is just a player or agent drumming up interest. We may not know until next week.
For those still asking about Marcus McNeill: He/agent have asked Falcons to talk/work out but Thomas Dimitroff told me NOTHING decided.
— Jeff Schultz (@JeffSchultzAJC) March 16, 2012