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mqg96 posted a topic in Talk About the FalconsThis is going to be a very detailed post by me. I fan-posted this on the Falcoholic as well and I would like to share this with everyone on the Falcons boards. These are officially my thoughts on the Falcons 2018 season so far. That top 10 in scoring D we had last year was Dontari Poe, Adrian Clayborn, Keanu Neal, Deion Jones, and Ricardo Allen coming together and leading the other guys on defense. Robert Alford, Desmond Trufant, Brian Poole, and other guys were probably better and up'd their game because of the leadership of Rico and Debo on the field. Jarrett and Takk definitely helped too of course. Our defense came TOGETHER as a collective group with all of those guys from the 2017 unit. When we got rid of Poe and Clayborn this off season, our D-line took an immediate step back and we saw that throughout the preseason. Once Debo, Neal and Rico went down, we were minus 5 major guys from last season's defense. Add the fact that Takk is banged up and even Grady too. You can't overcome that much and expect to be any better than last year, but when your defense is historically bad just because of 3 guys being out, even if they were major pro bowlers, our defense was already thin with lack of depth. I understand those 3 injuries aren't just any injuries, it's 3 injuries to your MOST IMPORTANT and GAME CHANGING GUYS on defense. With that being said, we still have way too much talent on both sides of the ball to be a 1-4 team the first 5 weeks of the season, our worst start since 2013. Look at other teams around the league who have better depth than us and better coaching than us, there are no excuses for them. People keep saying it's all about the 3 major injuries defensively, but the Falcons have A LOT more problems than this. 1. Offensive play calling not clutch enough. Our coaching is very poor in CLUTCH moments when it matters most. Our offense may have fixed its red zone issues from last season, but the few times our thin defense gives our offense a chance, we can't do anything. For an example, against the Saints we get the ball back up 14-13 before the half and we could have gotten 3 points and led 17-13, but instead we have an immediate 3 & out deep in our own territory and the Saints immediately drive down the field and take a 16-14 halftime lead, and that was a SIX point difference swing right there that came back to hunt us. We were tied at 37 against the Saints before OT and the Falcons still had a chance to get in field goal range and win, and we did NOT get it done when we knew our defense wasn't stopping the Saints. Against the Bengals we had a few opportunities offensively and we didn't get it done. Against the Steelers when it was 13-10 for AWHILE, our defense gave us opportunities throughout the 2nd & 3rd quarters but our offense couldn't do anything before the blowout began. We wait until it's too late or when we're trailing by a deficit to finally do something offensively and I get tired of this. 2. Blowing late leads continue to be a problem Our defense keeps blowing leads in the 4th quarter and this goes back to 2016 of course. I don't understand what it is with our coaching staff not having a sense of urgency late in games. Even in our only win against the Panthers, we were up 31-17 late in the game and we give them a quick TD, and then we had to stop them in the red zone to survive 31-24 and could have easily blown that one. We were up 12-10 on the Eagles and lost 18-12. We were up 37-30 on the Saints and lost. We were up 36-31 on the Bengals and lost it. This pattern didn't start this year, it's been an ongoing problem with Dan Quinn and even the whole Matt Ryan era when Mike Smith was our head coach. 3. Special Teams Our special teams have been bad, specifically our kick coverage and punting. We haven't had a good returner since Devin Hester for that little time. However, it seems like the few times we get a good return, it's always illegal block in the back for us. What's up with Matt Bosher's blocked punts 2 out of the last 3 games which were highly costly? It came back to hunt us against the Saints. It started the Steelers blowout on us late in the 3rd quarter. Keith Armstrong has to get it together or I don't know if he should still be our special teams coordinator. 4. Penalties and O-line The boneheaded penalties at the worst possible times in the world drive me insane, in fact, we are the most penalized team in the league I believe. That falls on the entire coaching staff. Last but not least, our O-line pass blocking and pass protection have completely crashed, and it showed against a Steelers defense that had been struggling. I understand the season ending injury to Andy Levitre and that's very unfortunate, but once again we have A LOT more problems than just major injuries at multiple positions. Which I will continue on here. 5. Problems against the AFC Dan Quinn's failures against AFC opponents are clear as day and night. I understand NFC games are more important in terms of playoff seeding and tiebreakers, but AFC games still count for your overall record. We have now lost 8 out of our last 9 AFC games going back to the Chargers in 2016. After the Bengals loss we are now 1-6 at home vs. AFC opponents under Dan Quinn as the head coach, 1-10 overall since 2013 though. The Falcons also has a 6 game losing streak to AFC North teams since 2014 even though we only play the division once every 4 years. AFC North teams are outdoor teams built with big physical guys up front and they grind you out, similar to how the Eagles are built who have always been a bad match up for the Falcons. If you CAN'T beat an AFC opponent, then you don't deserve to go to the Super Bowl anyway. 6. Has our defense ever been elite in the Dan Quinn era? Back to my point about the Falcons struggles against opponents with big grinding teams up front. Dan Quinn's philosophy has always been speed & quickness over big guys and strength right? This is Dan Quinn's 4th year now, and after 4 years despite the injuries on defense for this year's team, our defense is still mediocre at best and you should have better depth across the roster built up in 4 seasons. You are a defensive minded coach. Take out 2017 when we were top 10 in scoring D, and then look at our poor defensive numbers in 2015, 2016, and 2018. The 2015 Falcons had an easy schedule and let backup QB's beat them, and they were last in the league in sacks. The 2016 Falcons defense improved in the pass rush and takeaways, but the secondary was still weak and our defense struggled most of the season against above average offenses, and we know our high powered offense carried that team. Don't fool yourselves. We've never had an elite defense in the Dan Quinn era like we thought we would have by now. Yes, we've had talented players making plays, but we've always had the bend don't break style. Maybe it's the scheme, IDK. Someone help me out on this. Even the 2017 defense wasn't elite because we couldn't force turnovers and despite being top 10 in scoring D, we still struggled in yards per play apparently. The 2018 Falcons defense is HISTORICALLY BAD despite 3 major injuries to pro bowl players. Like I said before, our defense this year is last year minus Poe, Clayborn, Neal, Debo, Rico, and Takk & Grady being banged up. 7. Is it time to hold Dan Quinn accountable? You are what your record says it is. Good teams find ways to win close games and eventually have a blowout win down the road. Bad teams find ways to lose close games and eventually have a blowout loss down the road, which is who we are right now. Dan Quinn has to realize this, but he believes that "we're find with what we have" or "we're better than what our record says" when we are clearly NOT. Elite head coaches would say "we are NOT a good team right now!" or say "we are NOT there yet!" and gets their team motivated. Watch Penn State head coach Jame Franklin's postgame speech after their loss to Ohio State in college football. That's a great example of an elite head coach and a motivator. Quinn also has said week after week "our issues are fixable and we will fix them", and it hasn't been fixed. We keep having missed tackles and poor technique week after week. We continue to have an excessive amount of penalties, and so forth. Anyone recall the 2010 Packers who had 18 players on IR and they didn't use any of that as an excuse. None of the "woe it's me" attitude. They must have had better coaching. Anyways, I'll leave the rest for y'all to analysis this. What do you believe is the problem with this year's Falcons so far?
Dear Mr. Blank - If Dan Quinn remains head coach after today’s game, I will not spend another second watching this team or giving you my hard-earned money. How many more games will you allow your HEAD COACH to cost your team games? After years of questionable decisions and then insanely boneheaded decisions the past two weeks — last weekend him not challenging a clear touchdown and today giving the Cowboys at extra 8 yards, which was just enough for a hooking field goal to go through the uprights — he must go. Dan Quinn seems like a nice fella but he is fully incapable of leading us to a championship. As a head coach in the National Football League, he clearly doesn’t understand the basics of football…when to call time outs, how to eat clock with a lead, when to challenge and not challenge calls, etc., etc., etc. And as importantly, Coach Quinn is obviously unable to get his team ready to beat teams like Cleveland (who doesn’t beat anybody) and Dallas at home, with the entire season on the line. Do I need to go into the 28–3 lead that he wilted away in the SUPER BOWL? Nope, everyone knows that story, but since every. single. opposing. fan. constantly reminds us of that atrocious meltdown, let me remind you…Dan Quinn blew THE BIGGEST LEAD IN SUPER BOWL HISTORY. All he had to do was run three times, kick a field goal (he must have forgot that we have one of the most consistent kickers in NFL history), and the Atlanta Falcons are Super Bowl champions. Yep, the basics. You do realize that Falcon fans will never live this down right? Well that is unless we finally hoist that beautiful Vince Lombardi trophy. We are wasting the golden years of our Hall of Fame talent. How much longer do you think Matt and Julio will play at this level? The past few seasons we’ve lost a slew of games to teams that we should not be losing to, in pretty horrific ways. Let me ask you something…do you ever feel overly confident going into a football game? I sure don’t, even when on paper we have a more talented team. Why? Because our head coach doesn’t properly prepare this team. We are an undisciplined, unfocused bunch far too often. Sure we had injuries this year, but Dan Quinn is supposed to be a brilliant defensive mind and his defenses have looked clueless all year. Loyalty is a great quality but not when it’s to a fault. Perhaps others won’t say it but I will…you are too loyal Arthur. Where did your loyalties get you with Mike Smith? Dan Quinn is Mike Smith 2.0 to a T. He’s a good talent evaluator but a terrible head coach. Look at where Smitty is now. Out of yet another job having recently been fired in Tampa Bay. You kept that guy around for far too long and I fear the same thing happening here. I’m tired of Quinn’s bland, repetitive answers when questioned about why we lost a game. I’m tired of his clichés and empty slogans (like “In Brotherhood”). I’m tired of his lack of fire when his team does stupid $hit game in, game out. I’m tired. Actually, I’m exhausted. Being a Falcon fan is completely exhausting. My family and I have been watching this team since year one. We had season tickets up until you point when you decided to build an unneeded stadium, charge an insane amount for PSL’s (effectively pricing us out), and turn our football field into an amusement park, creating empty seats throughout leading to zero energy and fan noise. My family was able to look past that though. While sitting in our seats at NRG Stadium during halftime of the Super Bowl, my brother, father, and I, finally felt that that the 50 years of hardship were worth it. We were finally going to see our beloved team win a title. Enter Dan Quinn. But hey, at least we have $2 hot dogs. Please Mr. Blank…I’m a 42 year old man virtually begging you at this point. Please bring us a proven winner. Please bring in a coach who understands the most simple aspects of the game. Please bring us a coach who doesn’t isn’t satisfied with a small lead and who doesn’t seem to enjoy every game going down to the wire. Please bring in a coach who has that Bill Belichick killer instinct and who goes for the jugular. MY jugular, and heart, simply can’t take it anyone. The fans deserve better. The franchise deserves better. You deserve better. Please. Sincerely, A lifelong Atlanta Falcon’s fan who can’t take more losing