Veteran safety Chris Hope may not be starting games in Atlanta, but he has found a way to make a positive impact on special teams. Hope currently leads the Falcons in special teams tackles with nine.
Hope has been a starter in the NFL nearly his entire career, but he has had to make an adjustment this season. He admits that it has been tough, but he's willing to do whatever is needed to help the team (via the Atlanta Journal-Constitution):
"After being a starter for 10 years of my 11 years, it's hard to be patient and sit back and just wait for an opportunity to contribute more. One thing that makes a good team great or successful in this league is that you have to have guys that are willing and able to play roles."
Atlanta has had some issues with their safeties in the past few weeks, so Hope may soon find himself back in the starting lineup. But even if that does not happen, the former Pro Bowler has embraced his special teams work and will continue to work hard no matter what.
Before signing in Atlanta, Hope played with the Tennessee Titans for six seasons. He racked up a career-high 121 tackles and five interceptions for the Titans in his first season there in 2006, and he went to the Pro Bowl in 2008. Prior to his time in Tennessee, Hope played four seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers.