FALCONS DOMINATE SEATTLE IN DIVISIONAL ROUND

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The Falcons’ first playoff win since 2013 was especially sweet for everyone not wearing blue and green. After what seems to be a pattern of shaky starts, this team rights the ship in a hurry and gets to work. There seems to be a real plan in place here and the team’s confidence is sky high. Granted there are occasional drops and dumb mistakes, but never enough to deter the tidal wave of good things happening here on the field in Atlanta.

babs-nails-it

Our guys were dominant on offense and defensively they were a real pain in the rear for Russell Wilson. Some familiar faces made some spectacular plays on Saturday alongside our outstanding young players, helping our team ascend to the NFC Championship game. The veterans standing with the new kids….everyone is InBrotherhood.

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That old label of being”soft” is just a distant memory. This team has a physicality about them that screams toughness and effort. This game was a perfect example. Michael Irvin commented that the Falcons “took the soul of Seattle” with this game. By the wild and angry looks of the Seahawks players during the game, as well as the humble acceptance of the loss at the end of the game, I have to agree.

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Now we have to slay one more dragon to get to the big dance…

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LET’S GO FALCONS!!

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736 thoughts on “FALCONS DOMINATE SEATTLE IN DIVISIONAL ROUND

    1. Greg Mendel

      Exactly, F21. Not two playoff wins, but humiliations. Seattle looked better than the Pack. I can’t wait for the Pats (and it WILL be the Pats). And they WILL lose. By double digits.

      Reply
  1. Coop

    GM is right. I will add, regardless of who we play, it will be double digits. Matt is dialed in, the offense Amy be the best ever, and the D is making a difference. This is our year brothers. 50 years of waiting has brought us to this point.

    Reply
    1. JB Falcon

      The best part?
      “After looking like Super Bowl-material a week ago, the Packers on Sunday were reduced to a footnote along Atlanta’s path of destruction through the NFC. Any questions about the better team were put to bed with force.”

      Reply
      1. Greg Mendel

        Yep. No fluke. Our Birds are for real and they’re just getting started. Winning the Super Bowl will be a nice warm-up for next season.

        So far, nobody has found an answer, and they’ve tried.

        Reply
  2. waynesworldreview

    Amazing win !!!!
    We’ve been blessed with a healthy team all season and no major injuries today (as far as I know)…
    Could it finally be our time???
    I, for one, BELIEVE!!!!!

    Reply
  3. Mike-N-Charlotte

    2010 playoffs vs Packers we experienced the “Debacle in the Dome”…

    2016 playoffs vs Packers we experience “Domination in the Dome”!!

    Now We Ard Going to the SUPER BOWL!!!

    Reply
  4. Paddy O

    I hope for those who are saying that Matt Ryan has finally arrived, that you read the states on “most yards by a QB in a NFC championship game” – and realized Ryan is now 2nd, and 1st.

    Reply
      1. Paddy O

        when Ryan ran the ball in, I thought it was our day. MVP MVP MVP – I hope they heard it from my neck of the woods !

        Reply
      1. Paddy O

        if you saw the #ers Brady put up, he hit personal and franchise highs – 384 yards – Ryan has 2 games above that.

        Reply
  5. Coop

    So, it is the Pats. Good. We will beat the Seahawks, A-A-Ron, and Brady and Bilicheck. There will be no excuses, no easy roads. We will have beat all the very best. And we will beat them. falcons by 12… Minimum.

    Reply
  6. northernfalcon

    Well said Coop !

    I hate the Patriots. Where I live it’s a 7 hours drive to Boston and the majority of the people here are Red Sox Fans and Patriot fans. I respect what they have achieved but I hate them !

    Reply
    1. falcon21

      Hate is a strong word nf, I really, really hate them sounds much better and I do. My neighbor is from New Hampshire and all he talks about is how great Tom Brady and the Patriots are.

      Reply
  7. JB Falcon

    After this season is over I hope someone compiles all of the records the Falcons have set this year. I’m hoping the first one is
    “Falcons win first Super Bowl in the history of the team.”

    Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      click on “see more” in the bottom left corner of the link for more stats on the above link.
      *One thing jumped out to me – take aways/give aways
      Patriots turnover ratio -12 / Falcons turnover ratio -11

      Reply
      1. JB Falcon

        Looks like we allowed more points per game but those are season stats. We’re a lot better now. Overall, it seems to be pretty even although I’d give a slight edge to the Falcons.

        Reply
  8. Flo-Ri-Duh

    Patriots open as 3 point favorite in Vegas to win the Super Bowl. (ajc.com)

    It’s rumored that DQ has 3 OC candidates in mind and Chip Kelly is one of them… like I said it’s a rumor (thefalcoholic.com)

    49’ers offer Kyle Shanahan full control over the 53 man roster. (www.yardbarker.com)

    Reply
    1. Gman

      Congrats to all the Falcons and fans! Great playoffs! First Seattle then Green Bay. I was hoping we’d get Brady. I want the roll to keep going.

      As far as OC – I hope they have someone that can keep this juggernaut going. I hate the idea of blowing this up and starting over with a new OC.

      Reply
  9. Hamad Meander

    So proud of this team – they played like they wanted it very badly, and I bet they will put it to the Patriots in two weeks as well. It’s obvious that no NFL team in history has the offensive prowess of the Atlanta Falcons. The comments from various commentators sound like this offense eclipses the “Greatest Show on Turf” Rams team. I know this defense statistically isn’t highly ranked, but I love these guys.

    Can’t wait to see the Superbowl. Hey DARRELL – where are you man? GO FALCONS!

    Reply
    1. Paddy O

      they have played exceptionally well the last 8 games or so – holding all but NO to very close to or under 20 points.

      Reply
      1. Mr B

        Their last 6 games is arguably the best 6 they have ever played. I don’t recall them ever just putting 6 games away in the first half before.

        Reply
  10. Flo-Ri-Duh

    Odds of Falcons winning Super Bowl after week #2? 150/1 (Darren Rovell twitter)
    DQ will be coaching in his 3rd Super Bowl in last 4 seasons. (Adam Schefter)
    Matt Ryan is 0-4 vs Bellchick’s Patriots. (espn.com)

    Falcons vs Packers being rebroadcast on NFL Network right now.

    Reply
    1. Chop Buster

      “Matt Ryan is 0-4 vs Bellchick’s Patriots. (espn.com)”
      Under a Smitty coached team. Not apples to apples.

      Reply
  11. Flo-Ri-Duh

    Patriots are the 3rd ranked scoring offense in the NFL and their defense is #1 in points allowed (15.6 per game). This will be the best defense the Falcons have faced.

    Reply
  12. Chop Buster

    Long article, but good read.

    ATLANTA — To appreciate the magnitude of what we saw Sunday in the last football game ever at the Georgia Dome, we must consider what was happening in this city the April day Matt Ryan was drafted in 2008.

    I was there that weekend. Michael Vick was not. He was in federal prison in Kansas, serving nearly two years for animal cruelty. But the city not only hadn’t forgotten him; many in the city were keeping his seat warm and wanted him as their quarterback when he finished doing his time. I remember the day before the draft walking through a mall and thinking, “All these people with Vick jerseys or T-shirts supporting him … amazing.” So when Ryan got picked third overall by new GM Thomas Dimitroff, it was a new start. But some locals seemed unmoved.

    An Atlanta TV sports anchor, Gil Tyree, told me on draft day 2008 that Vick “is a messiah here. … No matter what Matt Ryan will do, he’ll never be accepted.”
    Yikes.

    Now to Sunday, and the 44-21 beatdown of the Packers in the NFC Championship Game, leading to the second Super Bowl appearance for the Falcons in their history. As Ryan compiled a four-touchdown, 392-yard game in the biggest game of his nine-year career, three times the crowd in the Dome rained down chants of “M-V-P! M-V-P! M-V-P!” Six straight games without an interception … Heavy favorite to win the NFL MVP on Feb. 4 … Crowd screaming for him as he left the field like New York screamed for the Beatles in 1964.

    Matt Ryan is headed to his first Super Bowl and the Atlanta franchise’s second overall.

    The screams and chants sounded a lot like acceptance to me. This seemed a cruel time to remind Ryan of that day and the words of the sports anchor in 2008, but in a quiet moment at his locker after the game, I did.

    This is not a topic Ryan wants to revisit. In nine years at the helm of this team, nobody’s ever seen Ryan sweat. He says the right things, does the right things, works the right way. But he understood the gravity of this day, and what he’d accomplished under such initial pressure. Vick electrified this town like few athletes have, but Ryan has taken the franchise farther than Vick ever did.

    No matter what Matt Ryan will do, he’ll never be accepted.

    Ryan said quietly: “Some things you don’t forget.”
    That was it. But others took up Ryan’s cause. “Matt’s created great memories in this Dome,” said Dimitroff, who made Ryan the first pick of his tenure. “Back then, when Matt was drafted, the doubts were there. But he’s evolved and stayed above it all.”

    “That’s a long time ago,’’ said receiver and returned Eric Weems, who was a Falcon when Ryan was drafted and who knew the tenor in the city. “If people are still holding grudges, and I doubt there are, it’s on them. I can tell you Matt’s my quarterback. Matt’s our quarterback. I love him.”
    The best teams are often forged through difficult times. Ryan was drafted the year after Bobby Petrino pulled one of the all-time classless coaching moves, quitting with two games left in the 2007 season to take a college job. Ryan had some shaky playoff games, but Dimitroff and Blank were unwavering in their support. Blank, wisely, held onto Dimitroff—a strong scout—when he fired Mike Smith two years ago and hired Dan Quinn as coach. Ryan has gotten excellent coaching from offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan over the past two years, and Quinn’s definitive demands for every position on the field allowed Dimitroff and key personnel men Scott Pioli and Steve Sabo to know exactly what to scout. Two excellent drafts and good free-agent finds (Alex Mack, Mohamed Sanu), and here we are—an Atlanta-New England Super Bowl.

    On Sunday, the Falcons defense was able to do what no other team could do the past two months: Keep Aaron Rodgers in check.

    Two things I notice about Ryan’s game under Shanahan: He’s more comfortable as an athlete—that 14-yard touchdown run against Green Bay, his first TD run since 2012, showed he’s not a lumberjng runner, but a competent one. “There was nobody to account for the quarterback,” Ryan said. “And everybody’s backs are turned playing coverage, playing man‐to‐man coverage. Just saw a lane open up.” In the past, Ryan likely would have stuck in the pocket, looking at his third and fourth targets.

    “Matt’s been a grinder, getting his mental right,” is how Weems put it. Ryan is better at play-action and run fakes, a more complete player who doesn’t think being a pocket quarterback means you actually have to be in the pocket all the time, surveying the field seven steps behind center. I loved his first touchdown pass Sunday, which was a combination of Steve Young and Brett Favre. On Atlanta’s first drive of the game, from the Packer two-yard line, Ryan took off to his left near the goal line and it looked like he’d run it in. But then he threw a one-hand shovel pass to Sanu for a touchdown. I just don’t think that’s the kind of thing he’d have been comfortable doing pre-Shanahan.

    Against New England, the more multiple a quarterback can be, the better. You saw how Bill Belichick and defensive boss Matt Patricia began to neutralize Le’Veon Bell even before he got hurt in the AFC game by taking away those creases in the defensive front that Bell uses so wisely. The Patriots find what you do well and find a couple of ways to combat it. No doubt that Shanahan today and tomorrow will be all over New England tape trying to play Spy Vs. Spy, figuring what the Patriots will do if the Falcons do such-and-such.

    The last player you’d compare Ryan to is Vick. But in the next two weeks, he’d better get ready for it. During the run-ups to Super Bowls, long perspective stories are the order of the day. Vick, 2001: thrills and chills, a roller coaster, but didn’t work overall. Ryan, 2008: by the book, outworking everyone, in the Super Bowl. The Falcons, and Ryan, have been rewarded, and a date with Tom Brady is the result.
    * * *
    We Could Use a Great Game in No. 267
    The Pats and Falcons haven’t played since a Sept. 29, 2013, meeting at the Georgia Dome.

    After 256 regular-season games and 10 in the playoffs, the NFL season comes down to game number 267 in Houston, Super Bowl LI between Atlanta and New England. I love the game, because there’s so much new and interesting about Atlanta (particularly on defense, where seven of the 12 “starters,” including third corner Brian Poole, are first or second-year players), and because there’s so much historical stuff on the line for New England. Tom Brady and Bill Belichick could become the first QB-coach duo in history to win five Super Bowls. Brady could be the first quarterback in history to win five Super Bowls. It could be a momentous night in Houston 13 days from now.

    And it’s new for the teams too. Of Atlanta’s 53-man roster, 37 players weren’t Falcons the last time these two teams met, a 30-23 win for New England at the Georgia Dome in 2013. It’s fresh for them, fresh for the players and coaches.

    I loved Atlanta offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan’s reaction when, just before I recorded a podcast conversation with him Sunday night in the Falcons’ equipment office at the Georgia Dome, I told him it looked like the Super Bowl foe would be New England.

    “Good,” he said. Not because he’s a cocky glutton for punishment, but because he wants to play the best. That sounds nuts, but what coach who considers himself a really good coach wouldn’t want to match wits with Bill Belichick and his staff in the game of the year?

    http://mmqb.si.com/mmqb/2017/01/23/super-bowl-51-matt-ryan-falcons-tom-brady-patriots-nfl-peter-king

    Reply
    1. Wings

      That was a great read!!

      I liked the perspective by Weems.

      I don’t feel as negative toward Thomas Dimitroff. The Julio Jones trade is a topic no more.

      Reply
    2. Paddy O

      I own a Vick shirt, never worn after he was exposed as a scumbag. It was offensive to me that NFL network did a football life on him – Vick was a coach killer.

      Reply
      1. Mr B

        I found it hard to forgive Vick, but I have; I cheered and loved him when he was on top, so I find it hypocritical to not allow him redemption. I think he paid a very high price for what he did when compared to other athletes (Cough Rothisburg), and redeemed himself as a human being, even though he never reached the promise as a football player. I am glad he was invited to the Dome, it is the only way I can still acknowledge allowing that one night in Green Bay to be among top 5 favorite moments…..

        Reply
  13. John Waynesworld

    What a VICTORY! Super Bowl Bound!

    Thanks to whoever changed the banner. I will get a VICTORY starter page going tonight.

    We do have 2 weeks so if anyone wants to wax poetic about our Falcons in a tribute blog before the Super Bowl, I will be happy to help with pics.

    Now we are onto defeating Darth Belichick and the Boston Death Star! Brotherhood beats chowdah everytime!

    Reply
  14. Grits Blitz

    The Missouri RR is flying wide-open with a dead man’s stick at the throttle! (Just need to see one more game to enter The Land of Lombardi.)
    Observed the work to be done before and still believe to be the best, you have to beat the best. (Period and w/o excuses of any kind.)
    What a ride! Birds exceeded ALL my expectations with reg. season play, much less winning div., making the playoffs, and winning thereafter in beastly-mode. Now, a SB with a team that has an entirely new attitude (unlike the party-hardy losers of 1998) thanks to DQ’s quick change of culture. (He certainly has earned all the credit and street “props” as a great hire with the new winning ways of this team. The “ship” truly is now full of “brothers” for hope abounds for real, as talk was cheap in the past!)
    And, this team actually has a very real, legitimate shot at victory over Vader and the Empire! Win or lose, if we stay competitive, said all along I am REALLY looking forward to next year, too – especially with new OGs and about 3-4 more studs on defense. Finally, the future of this team looks very bright – whether they would’ve been playing in Atl.-Fulton Co. Stadium, the Dome, or Arthur’s new nest. Having season tickets and seeing 1st game ever in Aug. of 1966 w/ Eagles, 1st reg. season game w/ Rams, and 1st Dome game can the waiting possibly, finally be over? The big reveal = 2/5/17 and, per John Glenn, “Houston, we have …NO… problem” viewing that one from the observation deck on that runaway MO. RR.
    Rise Up? Indeed, the Falcons have officially risen from the ashes!

    Reply
  15. Coop

    Great Victory Monday Cage. We did it. Matt and DQ have got us a ticket to the promised land. It isn’t over, and I will not be satisfied until we are hoisting the trophy. But I believe. For the first time ever, I truly believe with all my fiber that we will win the Super Bowl. Matt will get the MVP for the season and the Super Bowl MVP. We are 2 LONG weeks from glory, but trust my friends… it is coming.

    Reply
  16. Flo-Ri-Duh

    Tornado struck south of here – several lives lost Sunday and the weather got rough here – but only a messed up yard – thank God. I’m going to see what I can do for these guys soon as the roads are cleard – 8 miles from here it struck.

    Reply
  17. JJ

    From MMQB:
    “COACH OF THE WEEK
    Dan Quinn, head coach, Atlanta. All coaches coming from great programs get pegged as so-and-so’s “guy.” Quinn was Pete Carroll’s “guy.” High energy from day one, like Carroll. And, like Carroll, he was married to a personnel guy (Thomas Dimitroff) he really didn’t know. But from the start, Quinn was clear he wanted this team not to be “Seattle East” but rather “Atlanta Now.” And there are some striking differences. But the important thing is Quinn has his team in the Super Bowl in his second season—a great achievement considering he took over a 6-10 team that was comatose on defense and needed an injection of life. Quinn did that, and he built a very good defense in two seasons.

    Reply
  18. Flo-Ri-Duh

    Falcons will be facing two former UGA Dawgs in the Super Bowl. David Andrews (C) is the Pats starting center. A feel good story – undrafted and now going to Super Bowl. Malcolm Mitchell (WR), drafted in the 4th round is one of the better rookie WR’s in the league – 32 receptions and 4 TD’s. Much as I love my Dawgs – I’m all Falcons in the NFL.

    Reply
    1. Coop

      I love the Dawgs too, but the good news is we have 2 Florida Gators (Neal and Poole) and you know how the Gators ALWAYS pound our Dawgs!

      Reply
      1. Flo-Ri-Duh

        Coop – New regime in Atlanta and new regime in Athens- the days of pounding the Dawgs are soon to be over. In a couple of years they will have the best OL in the country….. real monsters in this recruiting class and the best OL coach in the country. Richt sort of ignored the OL – no more will they be ignored.

        Reply
  19. Grits Blitz

    JJ – Nice observations! (And, with room for more improvement next year, too.)
    In my dotage, it truly would be miraculous to experience a SB Championship and to have the NFL’s newest “guru” HCing our team. (For many
    more years/decades to come!)

    Reply
  20. SG

    After watching the NE / Pitt game, I honestly believe we can put a genuine beat down, ie, on the Pats too.

    The only issue for me right now would be keeping all our ‘youngins’ – all those first and second year starters – focused over the coming days and thru the final whistle.

    Reply
    1. Grits Blitz

      SG – Right! Hope DQ mandates a double bed-check… MANY consecutive nights prior to 2/5/7. (Otherwise, no chance of victory.)

      Reply
  21. Greg Mendel

    One of the reasons yesterday’s game didn’t become the shootout we expected was Rodgers couldn’t shoot. I hope it was due to Falcons pressure, but I was amazed at the number of Green Bay drops and general incompetence.

    Watching the Pats and Steelers (who I seldom watch), I understood why Brady is so “good.” If a QB has time to take the snap and stroll to the sideline for a drink of water before throwing as pass…

    Reply
    1. Chop Buster

      Drops are what happens when your opponent knows you’re a hard hitting defense. Someone heard footsteps coming their way. LOL

      Man I loved the way Poole came off the blitz and wiped that snooty Aaron Rodgers off his feet.

      Reply
  22. Hamad Meander

    You know, I’m really tired of this winning – the Falcons are RUINING their first round draft selection position! How are we going to get any better if we draft 32nd?!?!? There’s no way a premier pass rusher will be available at the bottom of the first round. Matt Ryan’s replacement isn’t coming there either. This gives us no ammunition to trade up. We are screwed.

    Reply
    1. Mr B

      For the first time in Falcons history, I don’t think we have any pressing needs….sure we have some upgrade opportunities, and we might need some DL rotational guy to replace Babs and Jackson, but now that Hageman is coming to play, it is not as pressing…. maybe some LB depth, or replacement for Brooks….and you can always use some DB depth…..But man, this roster is solid top to bottom. It is amazing what good player utilization strategy can do.

      Reply
    2. Flo-Ri-Duh

      HM – Just adjust your draft position from #16 to #32! DQ will find those jewels. After all the Patriots starting center was undrafted. Taylor Gabriel – undrafted. William Poole – undrafted. Dak Prescott – 4th round.

      Reply
      1. Flo-Ri-Duh

        Also, Falcons got two turnovers…. Patriots zero. Falcons fumbled twice but recovered them. MR threw two potential INT’s but the Pats dropped them. The Pats dropped half a dozen passes. The stars were aligned for a Falcons’ win. The Pack was beat before they came into the Dome. They were DOOMED!

        Reply
  23. Mr B

    One thing about playing the pats is they aren’t happy to be there, they are coming to win, anything else is a abject failure. The trick to Brady is hitting him in the mouth.

    Reply
  24. Arno

    What impresses me the most is the improvement in the Falcons over just the last couple of games. This is above the level of play when we beat NO and CAR at the end of the reg season. Amazing to watch — like wind catching a brush fire.

    Reply
    1. Mr B

      Agreed, the Falcons have never played 6 games in a row like the last 6 where they were essentially over before the 4th quarter.

      Reply
  25. Wings

    What about that “Road Grinder” yesterday on the DL?

    How long has it been that we had a defensive tackle who could “bull rush” over two offensive lineman and sack the QB especially Rogers?

    I’m talking about Ra’Shede Hageman. I watched him quite a bit when I watched the game a second time last night.

    Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      Like I said – Ra’Shede arrived pissed off. Somewhat stole his Cocoa Puffs. It’s taken a while but he’s coming on strong. Always been a supporter of Ra’Shede Hageman. His background is sad…. born to a crack addict mama where police found him hiding in a closet in a flop house at age 4, when police raided the place. Taken in to foster care and after several years adopted by a young couple. Never knew his father. Raised right by a supporting family. Went to college and signed by Falcons in the 2nd round as a talented but unpolished prospect. Says he still fights the “demons” and memories of his past but he’s getting there. Better story than Blind Side.

      Reply
  26. The Time is NOW

    “There’s chatter now about how Ryan needs to beat Brady in the Super Bowl to truly join the ranks of the elite passers, but that’s a lazy, disingenuous argument and subject to perennially moving goalposts. Once a quarterback gets the reputation as being disappointing in the playoffs, critics will argue how he needs to win a playoff game to justify his success. Then, it will be two games. A Super Bowl. A Super Bowl win. And then a return Super Bowl trip.

    Spare yourself that story and look at how Ryan is playing. He has been a wrecking ball over the past month and a half, comparable with the greatest active quarterback at his absolute peak. That other star is coming to face Ryan in Houston.

    This is going to be fun.”

    http://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/page/Barnwellx170123/tom-brady-matt-ryan-help-deliver-one-most-offense-driven-super-bowls-ever

    Good read…

    Reply
  27. John Waynesworld

    Because we are still in winning mode, I am not going into it full bore here but I for one am not giving Dimitroff a pass. Exhibit 1 (out of dozens)…

    On our present NFC Championship roster, only 6 defensive players (out of 25) and 9 offensive players (out of 26) were here when Quinn arrived two years ago. Quinn (and Pioli) brought in 38 guys who won 38 roster spots from 38 of Dimitroff’s guys…in less than 2 years.

    One quick item in Dimitroff’s defense…Mike Smith. Smitty was a positive change agent for the team and our city but he was a curator, a draw bridge operator, possibly a coordinator but not a Head Coach. Quinn is the genuine article as an NFL head coach. We are very fortunate.

    Reply
    1. Mr B

      TD 1st rounders since 2013:
      Trufant
      Mathews
      Beasley
      Keanu

      That’s 4 really good football players….Then when you realize that on 2 first rounders (Jerry, Spoon) since 2008 are no longer on the team….TD has redeemed himself.

      Reply
    2. Flo-Ri-Duh

      JWW – I’m with you on TD. His history is his history. No way to sugar coat it. The recent success (last 3 years) in the draft I credit to others – Pioli with the OL//DL draft of 2014 and DQ/Shan/Pioli with the 2015 draft and DQ/Shan/Pioli the 2016 draft. I’m TD gives his opinion – doubt they care.

      Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      I used to get a turkey at Thanksgiving and I was single with no idea of how to cook the thing so I gave it away. I once won a 100 lb bag of dog food and didn’t have a dog. Had to carry it three blocks to my car. Gave it away. Beat that for a hard luck story!

      Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      Time _ LeVitre came to Atlanta with hip surgery and never was right last year. He’s said to be playing with a hip injury now but says no way he’s going to miss this.

      Reply
  28. lrdcage

    Now that we are at the gates… I will need to revisit some earlier thoughts from this year that I was mistaken on…. 1) Beasley is not a bust, 2) Collins is not a bust 3) Shanahan and Ryan cannot play well together…. mmmmmmmmmm Crow..its whats for dinner.

    Reply
    1. John Waynesworld

      I am there with you. I saw Beasley getting thrown around like a rag doll by mediocre Tackles and it looked pretty obvious that he wouldn’t cut it. Somebody apparently taught him some hand fighting to avoid getting grabbed altogether. Maybe Freeney?

      Reply
  29. Flo-Ri-Duh

    New England’s title of #1 scoring defense comes with an asterisk. After having faced the EASIEST SCHEDULE OF ANY DEFENSE IN THE NFL — A LINEUP LED BY AN ASTOUNDING NUMBER MEDIOCRE QB’S — the Patriot’s defense entered the playoffs essentially untested by any of the league’s best offenses. Despite the Patriots impressive raw numbers, New England’s defense finished the year JUST 16TH IN FOOTBALL OUTSIDERS’ DVOA, which, among other things, weighs it’s rating based on opponent quality. (Danny Kelly – theringer.com)

    * this was my thinking – the Pats played a lot easier schedule than the Falcons… and especially faced weaker opponents on the offensive side.

    Reply
    1. Greg Mendel

      Yes, NE’s schedule wasn’t that hard, especially for its offense. The Pats will soon meet the buzz saw that just sliced up the mighty Pack. With our defense improving by nearly 100% every game, they’ll need every genius Belichick brain cell to find a solution to a Falcons offense that is close to scoring points during halftime.

      Fear the Feathers!

      Reply
    2. Mike-N-Charlotte

      Notable QB’s Patriots faced- Carson Palmer, Joe Flacco, Any Dalton, Ryan Tannehill, Russell Wilson and the AFC Championship game vs Big Ben. The highest scoring team they faced prior to the AFC Championship was Arizona…(who average 7+ points less a game than Atlanta). Not saying their defense is not strong, but I believe Falcons can score on them. What Belichek likes to take away one person. Last night it was obvious that he was keyed in on L Bell. Who do you take away with Atlanta? Julio…Freeman…the only way to slow the Falcons down is to get to Ryan. If he gets to second and third reads in his progressions, it will be a long night for the Patriot D.

      Reply
      1. Mr B

        Exactly, and the pats pass rush is not their strong point. Green Bay took away the rush, and JJ lit em up. That said, it is the Pats, and they are not just happy to be there, anything less than a W for them is a failed season…..We have to make sure we match their focus and intensity and look at this as a must win game. Thats by biggest concern….If we do that, we win easy.

        Reply
        1. Mike-N-Charlotte

          Understood… I believe Belichek locked in on Bell…(not allowing Pitt to establish the run). Many Steeler fans feel that Tomlin played right into the Patriots game plan by not having a different plan of attack coming out the gate. I think Pats will try to force Falcons to be one dimensional negating the effectiveness of play action. Maybe I would be planning on establishing the pass and running draws early… a little backwards; establishing the pass to set up the run.

          Reply
  30. Flo-Ri-Duh

    Biggest challenge for the Falcons’ defense:
    #1) Hitting Brady
    #2) Covering TE’s – Hogan got 180 yards vs Steelers
    Biggest challenge for the Falcons’ offense:
    #1) Falcons’ OL vs Patriots’ DL – establish run game
    #2) Get the ball to guys in space- Pats play tight & phsyical coverage & will double team JJ often

    Reply
    1. Flo-Ri-Duh

      Well that’s interesting but with basically a double teamed JJ (S/CB) and a double teamed Coleman that’s four guys covering two. Plays right into Shan’s hands.

      Reply

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