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This Loss Stings The Most Of Smith/ryan Era


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And not just because of the stage or the prize at stake. I'd feel much better if we lost and got dominated or outplayed-- neither being the case.

Just feel this is a game we should have won. Too many mistakes were made and it felt like we gift wraped the game away. You go up 17-0 and everything collapses from there.

Ryan's fumble hurt the most because we were in field goal range which would have gave us a 6-pt lead, but a TD was definitely attainable as well. I know SF didn't score on ensuing possession, but much can't be done with a start at own 1.

Even so, we had it-- the final drive to send us to the SB. That 3rd down play inside the 15 was the play of the game. Whoever swatted the pass down saved a for sure first down because Roddy was wide open. And... well fourth down didn't go so well. To be that close and come away with nothing is a stinger that doesn't go away so easily.

All in all, a lot of plays killed us. Dumb penalites to extend drives, unlucky turnovers (Roddy slips and the ball gets picked, Ryan loses the ball unforced). We had it in our hands and couldn't finish.

I don't want to dwell on this loss, but it's one I can't get over that easy. We had it. We lost it. Great season, great run, and a statement made by getting over the winless hump. I guess we can chalk it up as another learning experience.

The offseason is long. We have to wait a long time before we can avenge this stinger. The Falcons season ended today, so did my interest in the rest of the playoffs. It sucks.

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