A few short months ago you could close your eyes and pencil in the Atlanta Falcons' backfield. It was simple "Michael Turner and Ovie Mughelli... yawn" it had become the always predictable, always reliable backbone to the Falcons rushing attack. Sadly, like all things in the NFL there was a time to move forward and secure the future of the team, even if it meant a devastatingly tough decision like cutting the nine year veteran Mughelli.
Atlanta are now turning to a 5th round pick- Bradie Ewing out of Wisconsin to fill their need at fullback, and become their lead blocker of the future. He was seen as the most complete fullback in the draft, and the perfect lead blocker for a North-South runner like Michael Turner. Together there's little doubt they'll find success, but there are big shoes to fill left empty by Mughelli who wasn't just a stellar player, but a fantastic teammate and a wonderful member of the Atlanta community.
The story at running back is likely to remain far more familiar. Nobody is supplanting Michael Turner, he's still one of the best RBs in the NFL and it's extremely likely new offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter will love Turner's style after working with Maurice Jones-Drew in Jacksonville. Behind Turner the Falcons ensured to re-sign Jason Snelling to keep their backfield strong, and 3rd string RB Jaquizz Rodgers didn't have many opportunities to impress, but looked quite good in the small opportunities he had. Some are postulating the Falcons could carry a forth RB this season, but I think it's unlikely they keep another running back over a receiver. As it stands here is how I see the backfield depth chart:
RB: Michael Turner/ Jason Snelling/ Jaquizz Rodgers
FB: Brady Ewing
As a whole this isn't be most dynamic backfield in the NFC South, but it's solid enough to work with Matt Ryan to create one of the most varied and deadly offenses in the NFL. The play action will work extremely well, and as long as the offensive line can hold their blocks they'll be tough to stop.