Julio Jones, Todd Gurley out with Injuries for Falcons vs. Raiders

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistNovember 29, 2020

Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (11) lands in the end zone for a touchdown against the Denver Broncosduring the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
Brynn Anderson/Associated Press

The Atlanta Falcons will be shorthanded offensively with wide receiver Julio Jones and running back Todd Gurley both ruled inactive

Gurley is struggling with knee problems and will miss his first game of the year after starting each of the first 10 games. He has 610 rushing yards and nine touchdowns in his first season in Atlanta after coming over in an offseason trade from the Los Angeles Rams.

He hasn't missed more than three games in any season of his career but has been limited by knee issues for the past few years.

Jones has dealt with hamstring injuries throughout the season but appeared in 14 or more games in each of the previous six campaigns. He played just five games in 2013 but has otherwise been notably durable throughout his terrific career.

The University of Alabama product is a seven-time Pro Bowler and two-time All-Pro selection who led the league in receiving yards in 2015 and 2018. He posted 99 catches for 1,394 yards and six touchdowns last season, which was his sixth straight with more than 1,300 yards through the air.

Jones has followed up with 677 yards and three scores on 45 catches in 2020.

There is no question the Falcons are nowhere near as effective on the offensive side when he is sidelined, but they do have other options at wide receiver who will see more targets while he is out.

Look for Calvin Ridley to serve as the No. 1 option, while Russell Gage and Olamide Zaccheaus will likely be on the field more than usual. Brian Hill could get the majority of snaps at running back.