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Falcons Keep Finding Ways To Get The Job Done - Si.com


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The Panthers, Redskins and Raiders entered Sunday a combined 4-10. Atlanta needed a last-second field goal to beat Carolina, a Robert Griffin III injury/Kirk Cousins implosion to get past Washington, and another Matt Bryant bomb late Sunday to down Oakland. So, that doesn’t make any of those three Falcons wins look overly impressive.

I’m pretty confident that the Falcons could not care less.

Not only did the Falcons’ 23-20 victory (Highlights) over the Raiders on Sunday keep them perfect (6-0), but it moved them a step closer to an early clinch in the NFC South and home-field in the playoffs.

Along with teams like the Cowboys and Chargers, the battle for the Falcons is as much mental as it is physical. Atlanta knows that, even if this season ends with a 16-0 record, it doesn’t mean anything without playoff success.

An October victory over an Oakland team destined to finish under .500 doesn’t do a lot to help with that reality. Except in this way: Every time the Falcons find a way to win when they shouldn’t, every time they scratch and claw their way out of a hole to pick up a victory, they’re planting another seed of confidence.

For a team that has collapsed so spectacularly in the playoffs in past years, that could be huge.

Take Sunday’s game. Matt Ryan threw three interceptions and Oakland mashed Atlanta’s offensive line all game. Even after Carson Palmer tried to hand the Falcons a victory with a late pick-6, the Raiders came back and scored to tie the game at 20.

Sure, the Falcons should be frustrated that they were in that situation and that the defense didn’t hold a late 20-13 lead.

Instead of collapsing or sulking, though, Atlanta went out and took advantage of its last opportunity. Ryan completed 5 of 6 passes on the Falcons’ final drive, including a pair of solid gains to ageless wonder Tony Gonzalez. And Bryant then drilled a 55-yarder — far from a gimme, given the circumstances.

Scoff all you want at how the Falcons are getting it done right now. Heck, the Falcons themselves probably would be the first ones to tell you that they need to play better if they want to accomplish all of their goals.

What they won’t do is apologize for winning ugly.

If anything, the last three weeks just show us how dangerous the Falcons can be when everything starts clicking. The defense is struggling and Ryan has run hot and cold, but they’re finding a way to get the job done anyway. It wasn’t that long ago that we were patting Atlanta on the back for shutting down Peyton Manning and dismantling the Chargers in San Diego.

The good news for the teams they’ve played since then is that Atlanta has looked far more vulnerable. The bad news is that no one has been able to take advantage.

The Falcons found a way — again — on Sunday. They’re not going to hang any banners in the Georgia Dome for a home win over the reeling Raiders. But victories like this one could help them as they pursue a major celebration down the road.

http://nfl.si.com/2012/10/14/falcons-keep-finding-ways-to-get-the-job-done/

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I thought this way in 2010.

So did I. Not saying "the sky is falling" or anything like that, but this season feels eerily similar to 2010. I love Mike Nolan, and our offense seems to be able to recover this year even when they have a major mistake or two (think last week's pick-6 and fumble, and yesterday's 3 INT's), but still ... 2010 was full of close, exciting, sometimes seemingly miraculous wins, often against weaker teams, and it just didn't fly come play-off time.

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So did I. Not saying "the sky is falling" or anything like that, but this season feels eerily similar to 2010. I love Mike Nolan, and our offense seems to be able to recover this year even when they have a major mistake or two (think last week's pick-6 and fumble, and yesterday's 3 INT's), but still ... 2010 was full of close, exciting, sometimes seemingly miraculous wins, often against weaker teams, and it just didn't fly come play-off time.

Except this year we've shown we can dominate against good teams. But these last 3 games we really have not put it together. Coaches better get that fixed back this bye week

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Except this year we've shown we can dominate against good teams. But these last 3 games we really have not put it together. Coaches better get that fixed back this bye week

The San Diego game was when I really felt, "Hey, this is finally the year." Then the next 3 games happened, lol.

So yes, the bye is coming at a perfect time.

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While I absolutely think the giants and packers and maybe the niners are better; i am very excited about the way the defense has played so far. Here's where we need improvement though:

-pass rush outside of john Abraham, looks like vance walker is starting to show something though.

-akeem dent doesn't have the intangibles to be a good mlb l...i wish we kept lofton.

-Matthew Ryan still locks in on one target and seems sometimes like he only has one read on each play. That harry douglas pass was awful.

-our line needs work. They can't run block and are mediocre at blocking for the pass.

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They are same panther team that the media was picking to win the NFC South this year, and now subddely we are garbage because we didn't beat them by enough points. Its also the same Redskins team that the media have been worshipping because of RGIII, but apparently were should have dominated them on the road (despite being a bad road team accoriding to the experts). Nothin we ever do, will be good enough for these people.

As for the playoffs, maybe we will go one and done. That won't make us a bad or overrated team if it happends, contarry to the media hate that will undoubtedly say just that. It will just make us a good team that got beaten by another good team in a very competitive NFC conference. Over the last 7 years, seven #1 seed have gone on and one at playoff time, so we won't be alone.

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I dont care if we are blowing out 'inferior' teams or not...what I dont like is our soft rushing offense and rushing defense.

Those 2 glaring weaknesses will not always cost us against 'inferior' teams, but certainly will get us smashed late in the season and in the playoffs.

Just like last season...and the season before.

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I thought this way in 2010.

Yeah, this is starting to feel way too similar to 2010 to me. We aren't blowing out the teams that we should be dominating, and that's very concerning. I really thought we'd started to fire on all cylinders after the beatdown in San Diego, and then we came out and played like garbage for 11 of the past 12 quarters (only good one was 4th quarter in Washington, after RGIII went down).

I'll have my confidence restored if we smack Philly down, in Philadelphia, in two weeks. Or, at least, if we win 2 of the next 3 against tougher competition (@PHI, DAL, @NO) without relying on last-minute heroics.

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Yeah, this is starting to feel way too similar to 2010 to me. We aren't blowing out the teams that we should be dominating, and that's very concerning. I really thought we'd started to fire on all cylinders after the beatdown in San Diego, and then we came out and played like garbage for 11 of the past 12 quarters (only good one was 4th quarter in Washington, after RGIII went down).

I'll have my confidence restored if we smack Philly down, in Philadelphia, in two weeks. Or, at least, if we win 2 of the next 3 against tougher competition (@PHI, DAL, @NO) without relying on last-minute heroics.

I want that Philly win in the worst way they have handed us some beat downs over the years and I think its time for payback.They are wounded at the moment and I think if we can put them away that'll end there season and I'm all for that.

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Week 6 of 2010. Hmmmm... I remember being 4-2. With our first loss having no offensive TDs against a qb whose name I have already forgotten.

That year we had special team issues all over the place. We barely squeaked by the Niners and although we outplayed them for most of the game we tried to shoot ourselves in the foot and hand the Saints the game but they refused to accept it.

I also remember being completely HUMILIATED during this week because we looked like a HS Football team against the Eagles. We fell behind in that game and had no sense of urgency to put up scores. We were outcoached and outplayed for 60 minutes.

At least when the board exploded then it was deserving.

So, yeah, this feels like 2010.

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