And now for something completely different.
While the football world’s attention is captured by other matters, Falcons left guard Justin Blalock is going to use his time tonight to play a little tuba with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.
“Justin Blalock is a first-rate tuba player,” Atlanta Symphony Orchestra president Stanley Romanstein told Kevin Hageland of the Plano Star Courier.
Blalock said he began playing the offensive lineman of orchestra instruments when he was in sixth grade, and had to choose between orchestra, choir or band.
“I really wanted to play the drums at first, but I was steered away from that, which I’m sure my parents were happy about,” he said.
He said he played both football and tuba until 11th grade, when he let the marching band slide while he focused on his athletic career.
“It was tough to play when I wasn’t in band anymore because you don’t really see tubas just lying around,” Blalock said.
Nor do you see NFL linemen in symphonies, but you can tonight when the Atlanta Symphony plays a benefit concert alongside a youth orchestra.
Blalock said he took a few lessons recently, and admitted there was pressure involved.
“There is definitely a sense of excitement, but I think I’m mostly nervous,” he said. “There are going to be a lot of really good musicians out there and I don’t want to mess this up.”
Matt Ryan and the members of the Falcons offense have the exact same feeling.