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THE ENDLESS "RANT" THREAD..............................................


Hoppy™
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When you look at ATL's WR group now, (namely HD) it makes perfect sense why we let Laurent Robinson go..... Not only does the current group give us a little depth (keep in mind - this is a Mularkey offense - it's not like we are gonna be running a lot of 5wide stuff), but each individual brings a unique set of attributes to the table.....

We have the Superstar WR in Roddy White who can do it all.... Being a former State Champ wrestler, you can imagine he is a CB's worst nightmare when it comes to hand-checking, bump and run/press coverage, etc.... That's why Matt Ryan has developed such great chemistry with Roddy... Not only are they extremely gifted athletes, the passes are timing-based, and opposing DB's try to throw off the timing by jamming and hand-checking the WR at the LOS and for the first 5 yards of the route..... Roddy is strong enough to beat the press/bump and run, so that when Matty releases the ball at the right time, Roddy is at that spot to make the catch at that precise time.... Football is a game of inches and split-seconds, and if a WR can keep the DB from impeding his route, the ball should be right where he wants it....... I'm sure his experiences on the mat also factor into his physical and mental toughness, as well as his ability to fight for the ball in flight, and position himself between the ball and the defender to make the grab.....When it comes down to the physical battle between WR and DB, Roddy is gonna win most of these battles...... Add all this to the fact that he is also an excellent blocker, and you have one of the most complete WR's I've seen since Hines Ward in his prime.... Seriously..... And like Matty Ice, I think the best is yet to come. This is a combo that is gonna set the NFL on fire. Ryan to White. You'll here alot of this over the next ten years. Write it down. B)

Then we have Michael Jenkins... 6'4" 215. A big target and another receiver who looks like a star in the making... Every draft seems to have a theme, and in 2004, it was all about the Wide Receivers.... It was believed by many in the scouting community that there were 5-7 WR's in this class that would be Top Ten picks in most any other draft... Larry Fitzgerald, Roy Williams, Reggie Williams, Lee Evans, Michael Clayton........... These were all thought to be rare talents at the WR position..... Wanting to make a big splash in his first draft with the Falcons, after drafting D-Hall with his first round pick, Rich McKay traded up to grab the last of the big, highly touted WR's...... Though criticized early in his career for having "hands of stone", Jenkins cracked that stereotype last season with some very tough and some very clutch grabs.... A prototypical "possession-type" receiver, Jenkins appears to be the perfect #2 to compliment Roddy White. A guy who can run quick-outs on 3rd down and is perfect for the fade in the end zone.... Obviously the FO/Coaching staff believes, as attributed by his new contract.

In the third spot we have our "Hometown Hero", Harry Douglas (or HD, as I like to call him :D ), small in stature but huge in heart, HD is an incredible route runner. I can't remember the last rookie WR the Falcons drafted who could run the routes and come out of his breaks the way HD did his first year.... The sky is the limit for this kid..... With a 3-wide set of White-Jenkins-Douglas, Matt Ryan is going to have a lot of options, provided they all ***knocks on wood*** stay healthy...

Then you have the verteran of the group, old reliable, Brian Finneran.... Dude's pure determination and dedication...... For what he lacks in speed, he makes up for in solid route running and great hands..... It's gonna be interesting to see how much he has left in the tank after missing two years with back-to-back season-ending knee injuries.... Luckily, we do not have to lean on him as much as we have in the past (Michael Jenkins is a similar player to Finn, and will have his # called in most of the situations where we used to go to Ol' 86).... Nonetheless, the guy made a career by never taking "no" for an answer and proving his doubters wrong..... Before missing back-to-back seasons, he was our "go-to guy" in clutch moments.... When our backs were against the wall, we could count on 86 to get open and hold onto the ball..... In 2005, he seemed to be the only WR who could catch a Mike Vick pass, finishing 2nd on the team with 50 grabs for 611 yards and 2 TD's, despite the fact he only started 7 of the 16 games in which he played..... Though I don't expect him to ever put up #'s like that again (he doesn't need to... he is most likely only going to see the field when Jenkins needs a breather and 4-wide sets - which we are not going to see too often in a Mularkey offense).... What Finn will bring more than anything is veteran leadership to a relatively young group of receivers....

I'm not sure where Weems will fit in, or if we are going to draft another WR in the later rounds (or sign an UFA after the draft), but I feel very confident about the group we have in place....

Considering the way the O-Line came together, and not only performed well in both run-blocking and pass protecting, but what guys like Harvey Dahl and Tyson Clabo (two undrafted players with whom many fans were not too excited about) what they may have lacked in technique and athleticism, they more than made up for in intensity, intimidation, and good old fashioned "beat the snot out of the guy in front of you." I remember one of the O-Lineman (I believe it was either Blaylock or McClure) joking that he would hear opposing D-linemen and LB's saying stuff like, "Hey man... What's wrong with that #73 (Dahl) ?!?! Does that guy have mental problems or something?!?!?" hahahaha THAT is the sort of personality we need in the trenches, and that is the sort of "nastiness" that we haven't had in a lonnnng time. As Coach Boudreau teaches his linemen, "Keep hitting through the END of the whistle...." We picked up a few flags on the right side of the line, but it was well worth it.... If it wasn't intimidating enough getting knocked around by our O-line, here comes nearly 250 lbs. of Burner Turner running at ya. :)

Now if it's not enough that you have a nasty O-line that is more than willing to get bloody and brawl it out with any defense on the planet, and a 245 lbs. running back that can move like he's 185 lbs, but hit like a wrecking ball...........

Now you also have to deal with the QB. A QB who, in his rookie season showed more poise and composure in the pocket than anyone since Marino. A QB that is so calm and collected, that he doesn't seem to even mind the violent collisions, grunts and groans and cracking of pads, bones and helmets inches in front of him..... He calmly goes through his reads, steps up in the pocket, and let go of a beautifully thrown ball to any one of our talented WRs.....

Put it all together and we have a defense that is young (keep in mind, despite his age, Burner Turner has about as much tread on his tires as a second year player), smart, mean and talented...... And if kept together, this offense can only get better and better.....

I wouldn't mind a little depth for the O Line and the WR's......... But to be completely honest, I wouldn't mind if we spent EVERY single pick on the defensive side of the ball.... And if TD & Co. can grab us some more guys like Curtis Loftin (2nd round), Kroy Biermann (5th round) and Chevis Jackson (3rd round), it's only a matter of time before our offense AND our defense will both be among the most intimidating in the game......

I am a "think with your head, not with your heart" kinda guy.... I shoot it straight when talking about my favorite team, and will not hesitate to say when I think things do not look good..... And while my hopes are not quite so high for this season (hope I eat crow on this one), I think the long-term prognosis is absolutely outstanding. The Offense is already in place. Now we just have to get all the core pieces inked up for the long haul, sit back and let chemistry take over.... On defense, we still have a lot of holes to fill, and keep in mind, TD will not plug a square peg into a round hole just to put a band aid on a position. That is why so many of you were upset when we opted not to sign any big names this offseason... Either they were not the right fit, or they were not the right price..... Rome wasn't built in a day and neither were the Patriots.... TD learned how to do this the right way, from the right people.... Now let's just sit back, be patient, and let him do his thing.... He has certainly done enough already to gain our trust (****, I thought it would take 2 or 3 offseasons to do what he did in ONE).

Here's the good news... The offense is set.... Future Top Five QB, Top Five WR, Top Five RB and a **** nasty O Line..... Keep it together and it will continue to grow....

Now our HC gets to do what he does best.... Build an intimidating, hard-hitting, run-stuffing defense..... He was the LB Coach when the Ravens had the best defense in NFL History, and as DC in Jacksonville, he put together a "tough as nails" defense that NO team wanted to face. THAT is what he and TD want here in ATL, and that is what they will build here in ATL....

Just sit back and be patient...... For the first time in my 27 years as a Falcons Fan, I feel like we are going to be a realllllly good Football Team. I used to think solely of the upcoming season.... And sure, there have been times I expected "a great year" out of my team, but this feels much different.......

It feels like for the first time, we are going to have STABILITY. The common denominator that the few regularly winning teams share..... We couldn't ask for a better, more committed owner, and now it seems he finally found his perfect GM, and by keeping McKay, he can focus on the job title he is more suited for.... Team President. As a lawyer and a long term GM in this League who serves on the NFL Competition Committee, and knows all the ins and outs of the administrative side of running a team.... And as a long-time GM in the NFL, he can certainly help TD ease into the new position of GM, though thankfully Scott Pioli had apparently been tutoring him for this position for a long time.....

But with Arthur Blank, Rich McKay and Thomas Dimitroff, I'd certainly say we have an ALL-STAR lineup in the Front Office..... This is where stability starts and has a trickle-down effect...

Thomas Dimitroff proved himself right off the bat..... Before he even had time to settle into his office, he was going to have to find the RIGHT head Coach... His first decision as a GM would most likely be the biggest decision he will ever make as a GM. No pressure. ;)

TD seemed to hit the bullseye with Coach Smith......

"MIKE WHO?!?!?!?!?!?", many fans screamed in anger....... Some settled down upon learning that he was the mind behind that nasty Jaguars defense, but most remained skeptical, and to a certain extent for good reason. After hearing all this media hype about a "BIG NAME", here comes a guy who wasn't even on most fan's radar... I gotta admit, though I knew who he was, it took me by surprise as well... I wasn't even aware that he was looking to become a HC..... But Thomas Dimitroff went with his intuition and quickly realized that this guy was EXACTLY the type of guy we needed.... After failing with two polar opposite coaches:

JIM MORA JR.: A player's coach amongst player's coaches.... Maybe it was insecurity about his age, but he practically stripped himself of his own authority and let the kids run the school.... And as for himself, he was just "another one of the kids"... "Oh Mikey V! How ya doin ol' pal? Ya wanna bring your entire armed posse to practice today? That's cool with me! Ah what the hey.... Hand me one of those 40 dogs, G!" Players loved the guy, because they only had to work as hard as they wanted..... The first year the team would run through a wall for the guy, as attributed by taking his team to the Conference Final in his first year as HC. But I think by Year Two, they had him all figured out... Once he became too buddy-buddy with the players they knew he couldn't push them... Personally, I don't think he made those comments about "....leaving the Falcons in the middle of a playoff run for a chance to coach the Washington Huskies." on accident, thinking that it would stay local and not find it's way back to Flowery Branch... He's too smart for that... I think that he knew he had lost all control of his team and cowardly made those remarks to put the Falcons in a position where they HAD to fire him. And if the Huskies happened to want a new HC, all the better! In my opinion, we (fans and the ATL media) let him off a little too easy..... Here were the Falcons in the middle of a playoff run, and you hear your HC say that he would ditch YOU and YOUR TEAMMATES to coach the friggin HUSKIES?!?!? How can you possibly "give everything you have" for a guy like that after those remarks..... Good bye and Good Riddance, Jim Mora.

BOBBY "Pigboy" PETRINO: This is where the front office said, "First and foremost, we need a Drill Sgt. around here to get this place disciplined and in order. And if he happens to have a real fancy book full of 700 different ways to use Michael Vick creatively, all the better."

Enter the quitter.

As soon as it became clear that he was NOT going to coach Vick (the ONLY reason he took the job) he pouted like a little b!+(# and literally QUIT on the team by week Three.... It just wasn't "official" until Week 14, with 3 games remaining. Sources close to him said that by week three, he couldn't take it anymore and pretty much mentally "checked out"..... He thought so highly of himself, the lowly players were not permitted to speak directly to Lord Petrino. Players were to take their problems to their respective position coaches, then to their Coordinator. If the matter remained unresolved at this point, and ONLY through this chain of command, then, and only then, the players were granted permission to enter the Coaches Office and address the All Mighty One. Not much of a people person.... As you can imagine, this extreme is even less successful than Mora's extreme, and the season was over before it started.... Petrino's coaching style requires an environment where he is the Dictator and those who play for him are unpaid kids who will answer with a loud and clear "Yes Sir!" When he tried to bully grown men making 5 times his salary, they literally laughed in his face..... Can you blame them? And if this man had ANY shred of dignity left, he lost it when he snuck out of town in the middle of the night leaving, "sorry guys......sob....sob......I just can't.....sob...sob...My family.....sob....sob...... Good Luck!", letters on their lockers..............with three weeks to go in the season..... 24 hours later, he is all smiles on TV (not quite the sad, broken man he protrayed himself as in his computer-generated letter that he left only hours ago)... His sobs quickly turned into, appropriately enough, "Pig Squeals".

At this point, things were so bad, NFL Network was discussing whether or not we just had the most disasterous season of any team in NFL History. Vick was going to prison, half the team was injured, we couldn't win a game, and the cowardly pig had squirmed out of town leaving us with no Head Coach....

At the time, NOBODY could have guessed that it was a complete BLESSING for the Falcons that Petrino turned out to be a liar, a quitter and a coward and that Vick turned out to be a liar, an idiot, and a psychopath..... For it was the failures of these two losers that paved the way for two winners......

I think we weathered the storm, folks...... For the fans that stuck it out and kept your seats through thick and thin, we should all be patting ourselves on the back.... Now I truly feel it is OUR turn to grab some of that glory that other team always seem to get from time to time.... We have definately earned it. It's time for a lot of good karma to come our way... And I think it has arrived..... :)

My honest opinion?

Though every team gets nicked up in a collision sport, our injury list in the past few years has been absolutely insane...... Barring another rash of injuries ***knocking on wood***, if TD & Co. continue to build the defense and keep the offense together, in 2-3 years, I honestly think we will be able to really compete for the Lombardi....... And do so for many seasons to come....... :)

One last note, I cannot STRESS the importance of making noise while our defense is on the field... It is why you see "MAKE NOISE!" on the big screen and hear it in all the commercials... Making sure that opposing offenses cannot hear the snap count can make the difference between a WIN and a LOSS..... We only have 8 chances in a 16 game schedule to affect the game so make sure you are as LOUD as humanly possible. Rest assured other teams will be making plenty of noise when we are on the road to keep OUR offense out of sync and unable to audible.... BE THE 12TH MAN/WOMAN!!!!!!!!!!! :) Why merely WATCH a game when you can actually influence the outcome! Think about that! It's sooooo much more important than alot of people think!

My son and I make the rattlers (a few pennies and nickles in a plastic 12 oz water bottle).... Gotta sneak it in ***cough cough*** or make one there, though ;) As the season went on, I noticed more and more people in my section bringin' rattlers to the game... Those of us who screamed and used the rattlers more than made up for the quiet library people.... 311 was ROCKIN' for the first time in years...... I'm gonna miss my peeps in 311. the first time in my 34 years, I will be sitting in the lowers ALL SEASON. :) Stoked about the move... Whatever section they wind up putting me in, you will hear me. :)

So do whatever you have to do to make noise... BRING THE FRIGGIN NOISE!!!!!!!!!

......I think I need to take a nap after that novel.. hehehehhhh...

Later on, Fellows Falcons Fans of the Feathered Flock........

I'll see you all at the Dome again this year......

I hope you all have a safe and happy half a year before the season starts... All of ya's take care....

See what happens when you have brain damage? hehehehhhh you type too much... But I can't knock Grady Trauma - they are the best..... I broke my neck (C1 & C2) and severed an artery in the neck the night the Falcons lost to the Cards... I had a 99% chance of either dying or becoming a ventilator-dependent quadriplegic...... Everything feels fine and I just finished my EEG's (brain studies)... Next Tuesday I find out if there is any permanent damage or if the seizures, memory loss, etc. are just the after-effects of the Grade III Concussion.... I think I'm fine, though... (Nothing indicating brain damage was visible on the MRI and CT scan, so that's good....

It's funny... You go to one Neurologist and figure that he will handle all the neurological issues... But I go and see him, and he sends me to a plethora of neuro-specialists... For example, since the wreck, I watch TV and stare at a computer monitor with my left eye closed. So he sent me to a neurological opthamologist, and so on and so on.... But like I said, miraculously, I think there is no permanent damage and that I will be able to get back to worrying about my back pain/surgery... hehehehehh... But yeah.... Each day is a little clearer than the last.....

It seems my only symptom is that I stay up reading/posting on message boards all night long (if I'm not on myspace playing Mafia Wars.. hehehehhhh my new addiction)

****, I can get off topic, eh? What did I name this thread? "I'm excited about our offense, we are building a Ravens/Jaguars defense, be loud, I hit my head?"

Im just gonna stop now......

Be safe, people..... Have fun.....

And oh, yeah.....

GO FALCONS!!

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