Falcons Launch Mandatory Minicamp Without Julio Jones

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Atlanta Falcons

ATLANTA (AP) – The Atlanta Falcons have launched their mandatory minicamp. It’s the start of the team’s post-Julio Jones era. The three-day minicamp gave the team its first practice since trading Jones to Tennessee on Sunday. First-year coach Arthur Smith, the former Titans offensive coordinator, says his focus is on the players on the Atlanta roster. When asked about Jones following the first practice, Smith said, “I don’t worry about players I never coached.” Smith also says he has respect and appreciation for Jones’ accomplishments in Atlanta. The 32-year-old Jones left as the Falcons’ all-time leader in catches and receiving yards.

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Rick Nyman grew up in Anniston, Alabama and attended the University of Alabama. His television career started at WJSU-TV in Anniston where he had the opportunity to cover SEC football with Alabama and Auburn. Anniston is just 20 minutes from the Talladega Speedway, so NASCAR was a big part of his sports coverage. Due to this he was able to interview Davey Allison, Dale Earnhardt, Jeff Gordon, and several other top-name NASCAR drivers. Rick's next television job was in Savannah, Georgia, where he covered basketball player Kwame Brown (now with the Washington Wizards), who later became the first ever high school player selected as the top pick in the NBA draft. He covered the PGA Tour's annual swing thru Hilton Head and also had the opportunity of covering the Atlanta Falcons Super Bowl appearance in 1999 in Miami. Rick especially enjoys all the atmosphere, tradition and drama of college football. He also likes profiling sports personalities and learning what drives them both on and off the field. If he's not covering sports, he's either watching Seinfield or David Letterman, playing golf, reading, or working out. What he enjoys about Chattanooga is the passion people have for sports. The mountainous region of Chattanooga reminds him of his hometown of Anniston, which also has big, beautiful trees and plenty of hills. You can contact Rick at rnyman@wdef.com.