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Falcons holding out 3 injured linebackers against Broncos
New Orleans Saints wide receiver Brandin Cooks (10) gets near the goal line as he is tackled by Atlanta Falcons linebacker Sean Weatherspoon (56) and strong safety Kemal Ishmael (36) in the first half on Sept. 26 in New Orleans. - photo by Butch Dill

FLOWERY BRANCH — The Atlanta Falcons are hurting at linebacker.

Deion Jones, De’Vondre Campbell and Paul Worrilow are all injured and will miss Sunday’s game at Denver. Jones and Campbell are starters and Worrilow is a former starter.

What’s more, linebacker Sean Weatherspoon was placed on injured reserve with an Achilles tendon injury from last week’s win over Carolina. Weatherspoon started against Carolina because Campbell had an ankle injury.

LaRoy Reynolds is expected to join Philip Wheeler and Vic Beasley Jr. as starters. Reynolds has started only four games in five seasons with Jacksonville, Chicago and Atlanta. Newly signed veteran A.J. Hawk likely will be active as a backup.

Coach Dan Quinn said Reynolds, who has four tackles in four games, is ready to start at middle linebacker and call the defensive signals.

“We have great confidence in him just because he’s been in it and done it and shown it,” Quinn said. “He’s a very physical player.”

Defensive end Brooks Reed and backup strong safety Kemal Ishmael could help at outside and inside linebacker, respectively.

“We’ve got a good group of guys,” Reynolds said. “Everybody knows their position, how we’re going to line up. … Same preparation. We’ll be ready.”

Jones left last week’s game with an ankle injury that was initially described as a calf injury. Worrilow missed the game with a groin injury.

Jones, Campbell and Worrilow worked on the side with a trainer during Friday’s practice.

Punter Matt Bosher, held out earlier in the week with a hamstring injury, had full participation.

Quinn said cornerback Jalen Collins, who completed his four-game suspension for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs, will return to the roster. Quinn said he didn’t know if Collins, who started two games in 2015, will be active for Sunday’s game.

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