Falcons Victory in Hand – On to Big Apple!

Special Guest Writer: Roddy E. Nixon, Jr. AKA Seminole Warrior

Worrilow Beasting

“Some of us will do our jobs well and some will not but we all be judged by only one thing – the result.”  Vince Lombardi.

I’m going to be blunt honest to start. The Falcons, OUR Falcons, shocked me Monday night. And I was not the only one to feel this way. Following a season opening win against the Eagles, the Falcons showed flashes on both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball. Work remains, there is still the issue of a consistent running game, and pass protection is certainly a work in progress.  But for a team that is working to establish its identity, things are off to a nice start for Atlanta.

“Bruised & Battered” or “Angry & Hungry” Giants Team?

Next up, the 0-1 New York Giants await the Falcons. This will be an interesting contest as both of these teams are in the midst of working VERY hard to re-establishing themselves in the NFC as legit playoff contending teams. In recent years, for a multitude of reasons, both teams are significantly underachieved.

OFFENSIVE ANALYSIS

The Giants are in the midst of an offensive reconstruction in my eyes. They can be explosive at times but then they can also drive you crazy with some bonehead moves. The Giants feature a veteran QB in Eli Manning and the rising star that is WR Odell Beckham. RB Rashad Jennings is an effective, blue-collar back with good hands out of the backfield. The OL has invested heavily in the last two years on the left side with Flowers and Pugh via the draft while signing Geoff Schawartz to anchor on the right side. TE Larry Donnell, when healthy, is a viable weapon in the intermediate passing game.

Julio = Beast Mode!

The Falcons will seek to counter with the assassin, Matt Ryan and his pair of proven, reliable WRs, RW84 and JJ11. In the slot, Leonard Hankerson seeks to re-energize a career that has been held hostage to date by injuries. The continuing question for Atlanta, one that has lingered now for the past two years, is whether or not we will be able to sustain a rushing game AND pass protect.  So far, the duo of Freeman and Coleman has started things off in a positive way.

Like the Giants, the Falcons are in the midst of an offensive line re-construction as well. First round pick Jake Matthews has been plagued by injuries and continues to struggle in his game. FA Jon Asamoah has underachieved in a major way and did not even see the field of play in the season opener. Another FA move, the signing of OT Jake Long is supposedly for depth but one has to wonder if there are concerns that run deeper than what we are being led to believe.

The rest of the line is working hard but still has a way to go in terms of a more complete, consistent effort. Philadelphia really worked them over in the second half so it will important to see how they stack up against a larger Giants defensive front. It is worth the repeat; this offensive line is a work in progress for Atlanta and will be an area of constant watch/analysis all season long.

DEFENSIVE ANALYSIS

Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Jordan Matthews (81) lies on the field after bobbling the ball and Atlanta Falcons cornerback Ricardo Allen (37) made the interception during the second half of an NFL football game, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015, in Atlanta. The Atlanta Falcons won 26-24. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Big Win for DQ Era

Friends, the Falcons had a ton of energy on display against the Eagles. Most folks will focus on the pass rush (or unfairly, the lack thereof). That would be a mistake to do so. The Falcons were much better in every facet; they tackled with aggression, actually were physical at the point of attack, and literally dominated a very solid offensive line for periods. When could we say such last year or over the last two years?  First round selection Vic Beasley had a strong showing as he was quite disruptive against one of the league’s best offensive tackles.  Grady Jarrett flashed potential from the 3 tech DT position. And how about the buzz that was the debut of FS Ricardo Allen? It was an outstanding effort in all facets by the young man. I still have some concerns about the LB corps in the Cover Three zone but we allow things to move on as we evaluate further.

WHAT GIVES?

Will the taste of victory go to the heads of this young team?

Will they keep their foot on the gas offensively or will they become more conservative?

How will the Falcons defensive line attack the Giants and their larger, physical presence?

IS THERE A LEGIT WIN CHANCE HERE?

Willy Mo & Co Step Up

Absolutely!! The Giants are in a state of shock and confusion. Things could get very interesting in short order and Tom Coughlin has a serious task ahead to keep this team on point. He is a very skilled coach and leader so expect them to play better.  But I think Atlanta will seek to prove that Monday was not a passing late summer breeze.

FINAL THOUGHTS….

While I am still seeing this as a year of transition and still seeing at best a 9 win season, I really think that there is no reason why the Falcons should lose this game. The Atlanta offense should be able to make enough plays to stymie the Giants. Other than Beckham, do the Giants have any really offensive threats to be concerned with? The Birds will hold serve and surprise the masses with a 2-0 start to this season. They return to the Peach State Sunday evening with a win; 31-24.

 

So…..it’s time for your thoughts, friends.

What are you looking for from the Falcons in this contest against the Giants?

Will the Giants DL present a problem for the Atlanta offense especially the offensive line?

Will the Falcons finish the game with 120 yards or more rushing? 

Will the Falcons finish this game with a sack?  Who scores the first one, Clayborn or Beasley?

 

 

 

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219 thoughts on “Falcons Victory in Hand – On to Big Apple!

  1. snacktastic

    Postgame check-in: As I was saying, a better team would have put the Falcons down and kept them there. Fortunately, the Giants were on the schedule this week, and the Falcons did just enough to win. Still a lot of improvement needed for some of the tougher teams on the schedule, but a win is a win. 2-0!

    Reply
  2. Wings

    Matt Ryan threw several passes that were unbelievable. Hankerson was double teamed in the end zone.
    The last pass to Julio was perfect. Here comes Dallas!!! The defense looked good throughout but had a few letdowns. Pleased!

    Reply
  3. falcon21

    I’ve got to give DQ credit, the team never quit. We had some luck and we had some bad luck but that’s football. A darn good win. Here we come Dallas!!!

    Reply
  4. JB Falcon

    We could have easily lost that game. I totally disagree with DQ as far as not putting Trufant on Beckham. That, alone, could have cost us the game. It didn’t but I still don’t understand his reason for that. JJ was JJ and that’s about it. Hankerson dropped 5 out of 11 and Devante dropped 4 out of 8. MR threw one pass to Roddy and he didn’t catch it. Coleman getting hurt didn’t help and Worrilow has a calf problem but they put him back in to play anyway, just for his leadership of the D. He had 3 tackles prior to his injury and none thereafter.
    An yet, we won! That’s what counts. A lot of cagers predicted that our first 4 or 5 games would be sloppy until the OL jelled, etc. I’d say they’re doming right along just fine. This is like looking through the glass door in the oven and watching the cake rise.

    Reply
    1. JB Falcon

      “the Giants gave away another game late and fell to 0-2 for the third year in a row.” Dan Graziano – espn

      Yeah right buttface. They “gave” us the game.

      Reply
    2. Grits Blitz

      Arno – It’s just what the national media does and is all they know. (Bet they also hate to give Seattle any respect, too, but the Seahawks earned it by
      just taking it! One day, albeit begrudgingly, they’ll “have to” acknowledge the Falcons ARE a contender and not a pretender when the facts will speak for themselves. At this rate and with this new coaching staff that actually evaluates performance, maybe not this year…but soon. A 3-year wait now does not seem so long when the payoff may really be worth the delay!

      Reply
  5. Grits Blitz

    Predicted the defense would win the game for us. They actually came through when they needed to with the game on the line! Can’t even remember the last time that happened. (Think I’ll buy a lottery ticket on Monday.)
    Defense must continue to improve and stop the Alford bleeding. Coach Quinn, please give Tone Smith another chance…at least for
    the next 6 weeks. Doubt you’d be disappointed. We ARE surely going to miss T. Coleman!
    (Although Weems has done a great job of being sure-handed in fielding punts/kos from a defensive-minded standpoint, it surely would be nice to see
    what kind of return YARDAGE Nick Williams could generate or welcome D. Hester returning to what he does best when healed. Wonder how much longer Hester is projected to be out?)

    Reply
  6. Wabe

    Happy for the win.

    Clearly see areas the Falcons have improved. Run defense is much better. I like Shanahan’s system. More emphasis on running the ball and playaction passing game.

    With that said, still need more out of that pass rush. Quinn’s system looks really vanilla if that pass rush isn’t coming after the QB. Looks like just a bunch of soft zones. I’m hoping we’ll get more consistency and growth out of that unit as the season continues. But, guess we can’t expect to go from the league’s worst defense to the league’s best in just one offseason.

    Offensively, Freeman made a couple of plays today, but he’s not our guy at RB. Hoping Coleman can come back quick, because he’s clearly the better option at RB. Hate to call him soft, but Freeman kinda is. He’s Jaquizz Rodgers 2.0 imo. He runs with more burst and has more quickness. But, he constantly gets pushed backwards. He also dropped a couple of wide open looks over the middle because he was afraid to take a hit. It may sound like i’m piling on the guy. I know he made big plays, but he had a ton of bad sprinkled in there too.

    We need more from people outside of Julio offensively. More from the run game, more from the other receivers. Hankerson had a couple of key grabs. But, i’m just scared to think what this offense looks like if Julio sits out a game. It very much seems like it’s Julio or bust.

    Lastly, Dan Quinn imo made some rookie mistakes. I thought not challenging that Eli forward pass/fumble was surprising. IMO, the red flag has to come out on that, too big a play in the game not to get the refs to take a 2nd look. Also, I wasn’t a huge fan of some of his late game decision making despite the fact that we won. Punting on 4th and 3 is one of those things that worked out for us, so we can’t criticize it i guess, but Calling his final timeout with over 3 minutes left when they were going to punt us the ball didn’t make too much sense to me.

    It might sound like i’m nitpicking, not trying to sound that way at all. Just objectively trying to gauge what we’re seeing from this bunch. They’re 2-0, that’s all that matters. 2-0 is much better than the 0-2 many had believed they’d be at this point. But, at the same time, want to keep the big picture in mind as we gauge them coming out of these games.

    Reply
    1. JB Falcon

      I going to give Devonta a little slack since this is actually the first game he’s gotten any amount of carries. Definitely not taking anything away from Coleman.

      Reply
  7. Grits Blitz

    Last observations after game #2:
    1. Highly surprised Eagles and Giants effectively neutralized the pass rush of A. Clayborn.
    (DL hurries have been very good but sacks are preferred.)
    2. Based on pre-season, surprised Nick Williams hasn’t been playing or targeted more on offense.
    3. Surprised Ice hasn’t found Tamme more often.
    4. Whatever happened to planned screen passes with blockers downfield for the RB?
    5. Wonder when we’ll see more designed rollouts by Ryan and less by desperation?
    6. Welcome Shanny calling a few end sweeps with pulling guards.
    7. We need a speed merchant WR to complement JJ downrange. (That doesn’t appear to be Hankerson’s forte and Roddy doesn’t have the jets anymore, but that’s okay as they can assume other roles. Wonder what our new rookie WR can do on a fly pattern?)
    8. Need Worrilow to heal f-a-s-t. Would like to see Babs fresh for the 4th quarter by resting him in 2nd & 3rd.
    9. Believe we’re asking for real trouble with throwing quick, short, line of scrimmage pops to JJ.! Send him midrange – downrange for maximum dividends and less risk of injury.
    10. Outside guys on special teams need to “up their game”. Eagles and Giants getting too much mileage on outside returns and overworking Bosher trying to tackle/contain them.

    Reply
    1. Paddy O

      I loath those bubble screens – if you are trying to get JJ injured, that is the way to go. OK for deception, but expecting it to gain yardage is laughable.

      Reply
    1. Grits Blitz

      snacktastic – Must say, imho, our problems in the secondary were seriously amplified when Grimes was allowed to slip away and we haven’t replaced him since.
      Sorry, but I don’t see Alford as getting better as the answer.

      Reply
  8. Chop Buster

    As much as I saw Biermann being abused last week, gotta give him credit for getting a key turnover when the Giants were trying to put the game outta reach. Nice strip sack.

    Reply
      1. Chop Buster

        I thought Quinn knew Biermann is horrible in coverage and tackling in open space. I guess he (Quinn) learned to keep Biermann on the DL.

        Reply
  9. Ken Strickland

    At some point our OFF & DEF will put it all together in the same gm. While we’re not getting anywhere near as many sacks as hoped for, we’re getting some solid pressure on the QB with only a 4 man rush. I’m really nervous about Person at center & his issues with poor snaps. MRyan got several low snaps from him in both gms. Shannahan’s OFF scheme is doing an excellent job of neutralizing our OL weaknesses & getting JJones open.

    Reply
  10. snacktastic

    Honestly, while the Falcons aren’t fully polished yet, they still look better than these other teams I’m watching. With a few more things cleaned up, they ought to be fine the next few weeks.

    Reply

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