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Soaring Falcons have edge on Saints in key areas


faninmd
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Soaring Falcons have edge on Saints in key areas

]Even if they lose Monday night's game against the Saints, the Falcons could secure home-field advantage in the NFC with a home win over 2-13 Carolina in Week 17. That would put Atlanta in the same position New Orleans held at end of last season—NFC South champion, No. 1 seed and favorite to get to the Super Bowl.

Only two games separate the teams in the standings, but the reality is the 12-2 Falcons are consistently showing the strengths that are associated with a championship team. Here are three reasons—beyond being an unbeaten force inside the Georgia Dome—the Falcons are a better team than the Saints heading into the postseason:

Only two games separate the Falcons and Saints, but Vinnie Iyer says three areas point out a larger disparity between the two teams' seasons.

The running game. Unlike last season, the Falcons have been able to rely on a healthy Michael Turner to carry the load—and his contributions have increased down the stretch. The Saints, meanwhile, have struggled to keep their backs healthy, causing much lineup shuffling. Before Week 16, the Falcons ranked seventh in rushing and the Saints ranked 26th.

Atlanta's ability to establish Turner will be a big concern for New Orleans (ranked 19th against the run before Week 16)—and playoff opponents who visit the dome.

"He protects himself very well, and that has been a big plus to his durability with how he runs," Saints coach Sean Payton said. "He has a great center of gravity, he has good vision and good balance. All of those qualities make him a special running back.”

The turnover battle. The Falcons have excelled at protecting the ball and forcing takeaways with a plus-13 turnover differential. The Saints, who are typically outstanding in this category, are down at minus-5. Drew Brees has already thrown a career-high 19 interceptions while Atlanta's defense has produced 19 interceptions.

"Drew still has been pretty accurate, but what you see is maybe some impatience in him trying to make big plays," FOX and NFL Network analyst Charles Davis said.

It's important for the Falcons' best cornerbacks, Dunta Robinson and Brent Grimes, to be physical against the Saints' receivers and go after the ball aggressively.

The right side of the O-line. Last year, it was clear the Saints had the best offensive line in the division with three players making the Pro Bowl—center Jonathan Goodwin, right guard Jahri Evans and right tackle Jon Stinchcomb.

This year, the Falcons are outplaying them as a group at the same three positions with Todd McClure, Harvey Dahl and Tyson Clabo. In what figures to be a physical, intense division rivalry game, Atlanta's slight edge in the trenches might make the difference in a close one.

Read more: http://www.sportingnews.com/nfl/story/2010-12-26/soaring-falcons-have-edge-on-saints-in-key-areas#ixzz19Gsa8n7M

Edited by faninmd
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Saints win all the big games

Really? I must have been dreaming last week, because it sure seemed like you needed that game.

The great thing about tomorrow night? We win, and then we don't have to look at your silly posts for some time. Agh, tomorrow night can't get here soon enough!

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it was a game but let me rephrase that, Saints win on the national stage and they made a habit out of it.

One season isn't a habit. You guys get bold, take your paper bags off after one season and forget how to act. That is what we're here for.

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One season isn't a habit. You guys get bold, take your paper bags off after one season and forget how to act. That is what we're here for.

Aren't these idiots just hilarious? After season after season of futility, they have finally tasted success. They do have the Superbowl victory, I give them that, even though they were only there by the grace of the NFL and didn't really earn their place in the big game, they did win it. But, to hear all their moron fans talk, you would think they had been a dynasty forever. I love the revisionist brand of aints history that they spew out.

Yep to hear them tell it, they have been world beaters for years and years and years!!

Except I've been around all those years and I know what the truth is. They were less than mediocre for most of their existence and even as bad as the Falcons were over those years as well, we could always point to the aints as an even lesser team. Funny....we still can!!! :P

Edited by FalcFanSinceSix!!
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Guest The Masked Falcon

Didn't we see last Monday?!!!

**** pigeon fans!

Just like we all saw in the Pooperdome....week 3.

Next time is for the money, if you swamp farts can get here.

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Let's compare QB's over the last 20 years for the most part:

89-93...Saints-Hebert Falcons-Miller, Miller was better and we still took Hebert away from the Saints!

94-96...Saints-Everett Falcons-George/Hebert, Falcons were better by far

97-01 Saints-Wuerfell/Tolliver Falcons-Chandler, Falcons easily take this one

01-06 Saints-Brooks/Brees Falcons-Vick, Only year the Saints win is 2006 when you went to the NFCCG. How about 2002 when New Orleans started 7-2 and we beat you down? The Saints finished 9-7 and we finished 9-6-1 to make the second round of the playoffs. The Saints were sitting home watching while we hammered the Packers as well.

07-10 Saints-Brees Falcons-Harrington/Leftwich/Ryan, Saints win 07 by default, we win 08 due to Ryans rookie year and making the playoffs, Saints win 09 by winning the Super Bowl. 2010 will be decided ultimately by who responds in the playoffs/super bowl. Both regular season matches have been decided by a fg.

Overall at this position, the Falcons have always been better, including when Bartkowski was playing for 10 years. Should we start comparing RB's, WR's and TE's over the long haul? I don't think anyone will argue the Falcons have always had better players. ****, we even took Morten Andersen away because the Saints owner was too cheap to pay him what he was worth.... Arguably one of the best kickers of all time!!

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falcons have a better record against a worse schedule.

Huh?

The Falcons and Saints have played virtually the same schedule. The Falcons played Green Bay and the Eagles and the Saints played Minnesota and Dallas (two teams with LOSING records).

The Falcons have a better record, while playing a tougher schedule.

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