FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. - The Atlanta Falcons will be without quarterback Matt Ryan as they try to improve their playoff hopes in a key NFC home game against the Eagles on Sunday.
Coach Mike Smith said yesterday that Ryan will miss at least one game with a turf-toe injury. Chris Redman, who took over for Ryan in Sunday's 20-17 win over Tampa Bay, will start against the Eagles.
Before the win over the Buccaneers, Redman had not attempted a pass since his last start in the final game of the 2007 season. Redman completed 23 of 41 passes for 243 yards with two touchdowns, including a 5-yard scoring pass to Roddy White with 23 seconds remaining, and no interceptions against Tampa Bay.
"It was good to get back out there and get back into the game and get a feel for it," Redman said.
Ryan, a Penn Charter product, did not return after he injured his right big toe on the first series against the Buccaneers. Smith would not speculate on Ryan's status beyond this week.
"During the week, he's going to work with our medical staff diligently to get back as quick as he can," Smith said.
The Falcons (6-5) lost three more starters on offense against Tampa Bay. Running back Michael Turner aggravated his right ankle sprain in his return after missing one game. The team also lost offensive linemen Harvey Dahl (right ankle and Achilles' tendon) and Sam Baker (left elbow).
Smith said Turner has not been ruled out of this week's game.
It will be the first game Ryan has not started in his 2-year career. He made every start last season when he led the Falcons to an 11-5 record and a playoff berth. *