Flowery Branch, GA – The Atlanta Falcons today announced that they have waived linebacker Derek Akunne, offensive lineman Pierce Burton, cornerback Akeem King, offensive lineman Eric Lefeld, linebacker Stansly Maponga, nose tackle Joey Mbu, wide receiver Carlton Mitchell, and linebacker Tyler Starr. The club waived injured offensive lineman Adam Replogle, running back Jerome Smith, and tight end D.J. Tialavea. Atlanta also placed guard Jon Asamoah, fullback Collin Mooney, and cornerback Travis Howard on injured reserve, released tight end Tony Moeaki and reached an injury settlement with running back Antone Smith.
"We have had a very busy weekend following Thursday's game," said General Manager Thomas Dimitroff. "We started by acquiring veteran left guard Andy Levitre from the Tennessee Titans. Both Coach Quinn and I have been very open about always looking for ways to improve our roster and we felt this move did exactly that. Andy is a proven player in this League and we feel like he will be a good fit for our offensive line."
"These were very difficult decisions and I cannot thank all the guys enough for their effort during this process," said Head Coach Dan Quinn. "I was impressed by the approach all offseason, camp and the preseason. I like the group we have put together after a very competitive camp, and I am looking forward to us hitting the field this week to prepare for Week 1."
Akunne, 6‐0, 242 pounds, was signed by the Falcons as a college free agent following the 2015 NFL Draft out of North Texas. He served as a team captain and led the Mean Green and Conference USA with 108 tackles as a senior.
Asamoah, 6‐4, 305 pounds, was originally selected by the Kansas City Chiefs in the third round (68th overall) of the 2010 NFL Draft. He was signed by the Falcons as a free agent on March 12, 2014. In five NFL seasons, Asamoah has appeared in 75 games with 56 starts.
Burton, 6‐6, 305 pounds, was originally signed by the Minnesota Vikings as a rookie free agent in 2014 out of Mississippi. He is a native of Sacramento, CA.
Howard, 6‐1, 200 pounds, was originally signed as a college free agent by the Houston Texans out of Ohio State on May 10, 2013. He was signed by the New England Patriots on October 16, 2013, and placed on their practice squad. He was signed onto the New York Giants practice squad on December 25, 2013.
King, 6‐1, 212 pounds, was selected by the Falcons in the seventh round (249th overall) of the 2015 NFL Draft out of San Jose State. He recorded 71 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss and two passes defensed as a senior in 2014.
Lefeld, 6‐6, 310 pounds, was signed by the Falcons as a college free agent following the 2015 NFL Draft out Cincinnati. Lefeld was named to the Outland Trophy watch list in 2013 and 2014, and earned first-team All‐Big East honors as a sophomore in 2012.
Maponga, 6‐2, 265 pounds, was selected by the Falcons in the fifth round (153rd overall) of the 2013 NFL Draft. He played in 24 games over two seasons, totaling seven tackles, one sack, and two fumble recoveries.
Mbu, 6‐3, 310 pounds, was signed by the Falcons as a college free agent following the 2015 NFL Draft out of Houston. He started all 13 games for the Cougars in 2014, serving as a team captain and earning first team All‐AAC honors.
Mitchell, 6‐2, 211 pounds, was originally selected by the Cleveland Browns in the sixth round (177th overall) of the 2010 NFL Draft out of South Florida. He spent time with the Browns, Jacksonville Jaguars, and Dallas Cowboys as well as the Edmonton Eskimos of the CFL before being signed by the Falcons on June 18, 2015.
Moeaki, 6‐3, 252 pounds, was originally selected by the Kansas City Chiefs in the third round (93rd overall) of the 2010 NFL Draft out of Iowa. He spent time with the Buffalo Bills and Seattle Seahawks before joining the Falcons on March 19, 2015. Moeaki has played in 38 career games with 31 starts.
Mooney, 5‐10, 238 pounds, was originally signed by the Tennessee Titans as a college free agent following the 2012 NFL Draft out of the U.S. Military Academy. He spent three seasons with the Titans, seeing time on the practice squad and active roster.
Replogle, 6‐3, 294 pounds, was signed by the Falcons as a college free agent following the 2013 NFL Draft. He spent the 2014 season as a member of Atlanta's practice squad.
Smith, 5‐9, 192, was originally signed as a college free agent by the Detroit Lions on May 8, 2009 out of Florida State. He spent time with the Lions and Minnesota Vikings during training camp before being signed to the Houston Texans practice squad. Smith was signed to the Falcons practice squad on October 21, 2009 and made the active roster in 2010. In five seasons with the Falcons, he played in 59 games while logging 286 yards on 29 carries with four touchdowns.
Smith, 6‐0, 226 pounds, was signed by the Falcons as a college free agent out of Syracuse following the 2014 NFL Draft. He spent the first 16 weeks of the season on the Falcons practice squad and was signed to the active roster on December 24, 2014.
Starr, 6‐5, 250 pounds, was selected by the Atlanta Falcons in the seventh round (255th overall) of the 2014 NFL Draft out of South Dakota. He was a member of the Falcons 53‐man active roster last season, but did not see any game action.
Tialavea, 6‐4, 260 pounds, was originally signed by the Jacksonville Jaguars as a college free agent out of Utah State in 2014. He also spent time as a member of the Buffalo Bills practice squad last season.
for more features.