American Football

Falcons place TE Parker Hesse on injured reserve and bring back WR Frank Darby


Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Atlanta Falcons
Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Darby wasn’t away that long.

The Falcons practice squad has been hit by the injury bug, and it’s going to cost them Parker Hesse. The corresponding move, however, brings a familiar face back into the fold.

Hesse was a vital blocker for the Falcons the past two seasons, but has been on the practice squad in 2023 with Jonnu Smith added and both MyCole Pruitt and John FitzPatrick on the active roster. We’re not sure how he’ll be out for, but even if he returns this season, Hesse is unlikely to have more than a small role for a team that isn’t even finding snaps for FitzPatrick at the moment.

Frank Darby, on the other hand, might find his way into a small role down the line. Per the Falcons’ Terrin Waack, Darby is back on the practice squad.

Darby was competing for the fifth receiver role in Atlanta this summer before an injury cost him a shot at the spot; he was waived with an injury designation in mid-August. Josh Ali wound up taking that role for Atlanta, but with Ali dealing with an injury at the moment that kept him from playing in London, it’s possible Darby will be a practice squad elevation on Sunday. He’ll likely be limited to special teams work, as the team’s third and fourth receivers have barely had a role to this point in a weak passing attack.

We wish Hesse well on his recovery and welcome Darby back with open arms.

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