The Falcons know very well the importance of quality depth at left tackle. They had to turn to their backup at the position last season, Will Svitek, to start 10 games in 2011 while the Week One starter, Sam Baker, missed time with injuries and struggled to be effective when he was able to play.
Baker is healthy and was given back his starting job as Matt Ryan’s blind-side protector this offseason, but Atlanta lost Svitek for the season earlier this week when he suffered an upper right arm injury in practice.
With the start of the regular season only a couple weeks away, the Falcons are anxious to find help at left tackle, and rookie Lamar Holmes is getting the first crack at showing he’s up to the task of backing up the oft-injured Baker.
Holmes, a third-round pick, missed the offseason program and part of training camp with a broken toe. He also did not play in either of Atlanta’s first two preseason games. The Southern Mississippi product has good size and arm length, but we hear he has looked stiff in practices. Offensive-line coach Pat Hill is working very closely with him.