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Falcons release seven players, including Crumpler
By Pat Yasinskas
Updated: February 15, 2008, 1:56 PM ET
The Atlanta Falcons continued their franchise makeover in earnest on Friday, releasing tight eend Alge Crumpler, quarterback quarterback Byron Leftwich, offensive tackle Wayne Gandy and four other players.
Teh team also announced it had released cornerback Lewis Sanders, wide receiver Jamin Elliott, linebacker Marcus Wilkins and defensive tackle Rod Coleman.
"This is a difficult day for the entire organization," Falcons GM Thomas Dimitroff said in a statement from the team. "A number of these players have contributed to this organization on and off the field at a high level and we greatly appreciate their efforts. These decisions weren't easy, but we felt they were necessary to build a team in the long-term best interest of the Falcons and its fans."
Crumpler, who just completed his seventh season, all with Atlanta, has 316 career catches for 4,212 yards and 35 touchdowns. He had been with the team since 2001 and was selected to five Pro Bowls.
Leftwich, formerly a starter for the Jacksonville Jaguars, was acquired by the Falcons during the season, was acquired by the Falcons after the Jaguars released him in order to go with David Garrard. He alternated with Joey Harrington as the Falcons' starter last season.
Pat Yasinskas covers the NFL for ESPN.com.