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 Post subject: sion of when we land in town
PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2018 1:56 pm 

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The Atlanta Falcons couldn't wait to show the biggest crowd to attend one of their practices their stadium's fully functioning retractable roof.

The Mercedes-Benz Stadium roof was closed for all but one Falcons regular-season game in the facility's 2017 debut season. The Falcons proved the roof is now ready for action by opening and closing the structure before Sunday's rare stadium-based training camp practice.

"It was cool to see it open today Valtteri Filppula Jersey , for sure," said quarterback Matt Ryan.

All the same, Ryan was grateful to see the eight massive petals on the camera lens-like retractable design close again. After practicing in the heat for the first two days of training camp, cool temperatures for an indoor session were a welcome change.

"We weren't mad that we were in air conditioning today for training camp," he said, smiling.

Coach Dan Quinn said he is looking forward to more open-air home games this season.

"How many times in this part of the country have we all driven to the stadium and said 'Man, this would be one awesome day to have it open,'" Quinn said. "I think that will be a really significant part of the fan experience here."

The Falcons said more than 60,000 tickets were distributed for the practice. The team called the practice a sellout, even though there were empty seats, because all the tickets available, at $5 each, were sold. The Falcons said it was a team record for a training camp practice.

The large turnout led Falcons owner Arthur Blank to remember the Falcons holding training camp at Furman University in Greenville Auston Matthews Jersey , South Carolina, when he bought the team in 2001.

"A huge day was 200 people," Blank said. "We don't practice normally at MBS, but it's incredible. I think it's a great tribute to the fan base, a great tribute to the organization and the relationship we've built with the fans. I'm thrilled to be here today to watch it and enjoy it."

Sunday was the team's first practice in pads. Quinn said his players always are motivated by the first practice when hitting is allowed. He said it was an extra perk for the players to practice before a much bigger crowd than can attend training camp at the team's practice facility in Flowery Branch, Georgia, about an hour north of downtown Atlanta.

"When I told them what we were doing, they were really pumped to hear how many people would be here for practice today," Quinn said. "It does add an element of excitement where the performance for practice ramps up a little more with so many fans here."

After seeing their scoring offense decline from No. 1 in the NFL in 2016 to No. 15 last season, the Falcons put an emphasis on running plays inside the 20 in their 11-on-11 drills.

The practice ended with Ryan scrambling to his left and passing to Mohamed Sanu for a touchdown.

NOTES: DE Takkarist McKinley was held out with a bruised right shoulder. He has had surgeries on both shoulders the past two years. "We'll see what it looks like for tomorrow," Quinn said before adding McKinley could have other scheduled days off in the next two weeks. RB Ito Smith (foot) and OT Ty Sambrailo (right hand) also are considered day to day after being held out. WR Calvin Ridley, who had a minor hamstring injury on Saturday, practiced and showed no sign of the injury. ... Training camp returns to the team's practice facility on Monday before a day off on Tuesday.

Joe Tessitore calls his new gig at ESPN a ”legacy job.”

Jason Witten notes he’s joining ”another iconic franchise.”

Booger McFarland says it’s ”the pinnacle of what we do.”

They are the three new voices who will work ESPN’s Monday night games this season.

Tessitore has been one of the network’s top announcers for 16 years on boxing Frank Gore Jersey , college football and basketball, including calling the College Football Playoff semifinals the past two years. It will be his first NFL assignment.

”I am very conscious of that lineage,” says Tessitore, who at 46 is the oldest member of what he calls ”a young, vibrant crew.”

”When I got the call that I would be doing this, my first reaction was remembering when I was a kid watching Frank Gifford, Dandy Don (Meredith) and Howard Cosell. Everybody back then watched `Monday Night Football’ and `Wide World of Sports’ and Howard Cosell doing boxing. I did a Cosell imitation that had my grandfather, who didn’t speak English, laughing his tail off.”

Witten, one of the sport’s finest tight ends for 15 seasons and a likely Hall of Famer, retired from the Dallas Cowboys earlier this month to move into the booth.

Tessitore believes Witten will be a natural as he and McFarland replace Jon Gruden as analysts. Gruden, of course, is back coaching in the league with Oakland.

”We had a lot of candidates http://www.officialcanadiensprostore.com/authentic-adidas-karl-alzner-jersey , and at the end of the audition process we all were saying, `This is very obvious,”’ Tessitore says of Witten.

”He has such an upside that this is a guy who could be the next generation’s face and voice of the NFL. He’s smart, respected, even beloved by coaches, and has a tremendously high football IQ. Jason has a little of all the traits and characteristics of the great ones. Most importantly, he is wholly authentic.”

Witten will be in the broadcast booth with Tessitore. McFarland, who won two Super Bowls as a player and has been an analyst for ESPN and SEC Network for four years, will be the first field-level analyst for ”Monday Night Football.”’

The idea is for the effervescent McFarland to give a viewpoint from near the trenches – exactly where he spent nine pro seasons as a defensive lineman.

McFarland’s wit and enthusiasm will be apparent from the outset of the broadcasts; ESPN’s first telecast will be Thursday night, Aug. 16 with the Jets at the Redskins in the preseason.

”I am going to use a strange word to describe Booger as an announcer: nimble,” Tessitore says. ”He’s dynamic, a huge personality and presence. You can’t have a cookie-cutter type of analyst and Booger is far from that – he’s a guy who you can turn on the red light for the broadcast and he’s ready to go.”

Tessitore replaces Sean McDonough, who returns to doing college football.

Lisa Salters is the only holdover Womens Lamar Jackson Jersey , returning for her seventh season as the sideline reporter.

Tessitore recognizes the platform he and his new sidekicks will have. Their first regular-season game will be the nightcap of the opening Monday night doubleheader, the Rams at the Raiders (and Gruden).

”The college game lends itself to every game being its own story, the pageantry and the storytelling attached to it,” Tessitore says. ”In the NFL, each game is a continuation of a well-told narrative that everyone is following.

”It’s like this is our weekly story, part of a book we’ve all been continuously reading, and each week we’re on to the next chapter.”

He also realizes that simply calling a game for three hours or longer isn’t what his new job should be about. There’s much more to it.

”There’s a vision of when we land in town we begin to create content for fans who can go to the app and hear what we have to say about the upcoming games or what’s happening in the league,” he says. ”We also want to have more content made available pre-game and postgame.

”I’ve become so football-obsessed, it has become ridiculous.”

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