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The Falcons lack significant depth behind DeCoud and William Moore. Second-year player Shann Schillinger is the only other safety on the roster, so Sanders should get extensive playing time once he’s familiar with the system.

Pro Bowler Brent Grimes and Dunta Robinson are set at the cornerback positions, but Hayden could fill a valuable role at nickel back. Chris Owens is still on the roster, but has yet to live up to expectations heading into his third season. He was picked on mercilessly by Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay’s playoff romp over the Falcons.

After a winless preseason, Atlanta opens the regular season Sunday at Chicago in a matchup of division champions from 2010.

“I’m trying my best to get out there,” Hayden said. “I might miss the first game, but then I feel like I’ll be ready to go.”

Sanders was pleased to wind up with another winning organization after leaving the Patriots.

“This is a good, young, up-and-coming football team,” he said. “They have great players, great management, everything you could want in an organization. I’m thankful for the opportunity to be here. I’m thankful to be an Atlanta Falcon. I look forward to helping us win some games.”

Notes: Coach Mike Smith confirmed that Garrett Reynolds will start at right offensive guard. He was No. 1 on the depth chart throughout the preseason, so the announcement following Monday’s practice was no surprise. Reynolds beat out Mike Johnson for the spot held last season by Harvey Dahl, who signed with St. Louis. … The Falcons filled out the last remaining spot on their practice squad Monday, signing tight end Marquez Branson. A day earlier, the team brought back quarterback John Parker Wilson, safety Rafael Bush, offensive guard Andrew Jackson, offensive tackle Jose Valdez, linebacker Robert James and receivers Kevin Cone and Drew Davis. … With Wilson demoted to the practice squad, Atlanta plans to open the season with only two quarterbacks on the active roster: starter Matt Ryan and Chris Redman.