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Falcons release former starting left guard Jalen Mayfield among 4 cuts

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. (AP) — The Atlanta Falcons released offensive lineman Jalen Mayfield, a third-round draft pick in 2021 who couldn't win a job this preseason as a swing tackle, on Saturday.

Mayfield started 16 games at left guard as a rookie in 2021 but missed last season with a back injury. He focused on tackle in this year's training camp, started at right tackle in a preseason game at Miami and was trying to win a roster spot behind starting tackles Jake Matthews and Kaleb McGary.

Mayfield's release came after Matt Hennessy, who was contending for the starting job at left guard, was lost for the season. Hennessey suffered an apparent knee injury and was placed on injured reserve on Aug. 16. Rookie Matthew Bergeron, a second-round pick from Syracuse, is expected to start at left guard.

Mayfield's ability to provide depth at both guard and tackle wasn't enough to earn the roster position.

Mayfield isn't the first former starter to be cut by Atlanta. Mykal Walker, a starting linebacker in 2022, was released in a surprise move on Aug. 13.

The Falcons also released cornerback Bless Austin and defensive linemen Justin Ellis and Delontae Scott on Saturday.

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