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Padawan Knight

Third Quarter Woes?

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For the last few years we've talked about how bad the Falcons have been in the 3rd Quarter under Mike Smith. I was tired of just using the "eye test" and decided to go crunch some numbers and bring back the stats for discussion...

2008 Scoring:

1st Quarter - 100 points

2nd Quarter - 107 points

3rd Quarter - 43 points

4th Quarter - 104 points

2009 Scoring:

1st Quarter - 78 points

2nd Quarter - 116 points

3rd Quarter - 60 points

4th Quarter - 109 points

2010 Scoring:

1st Quarter - 69 points

2nd Quarter - 148 points

3rd Quarter - 83 points

4th Quarter - 111 points

2011 Scoring:

1st Quarter - 120 points

2nd Quarter - 115 points

3rd Quarter - 74 points

4th Quarter - 93 points

2012 Scoring:

1st Quarter - 91 points

2nd Quarter - 131 points

3rd Quarter - 68 points

4th Quarter - 129 points

2013 Scoring:

1st Quarter - 79 points

2nd Quarter - 122 points

3rd Quarter - 56 points

4th Quarter - 93 points

2008 - 2013 Total Scoring:

1st Quarter - 537 points

2nd Quarter - 739 points

3rd Quarter - 384 points

4th Quarter - 639 points

(these numbers do not include the overtime points)

I also decided to look at the number of times that we got completely shutout in each quarter of a game. Here are the numbers...

2008: 4 | 3 | 8 | 5

2009: 6 | 4 | 7 | 0

2010: 7 | 0 | 4 | 3

2011: 2 | 3 | 5 | 4

2012: 5 | 2 | 7 | 1

2013: 6 | 1 | 8 | 5

Total: 30 | 13 | 40 | 18

None of the numbers so far have included the playoffs. In playoffs games, we only scored ONCE (a touchdown against Seattle) in the playoffs. We got shutout in a total of 8 out of 20 quarters (1, 3 vs ARI - 3 vs GB - 1, 3, 4 vs NYG - 3, 4 vs SFO). Our total scoring per quarter in the playoffs: 20 | 50 | 7 | 17

Obviously, the 3rd Quarter has been a pretty decent struggle for this team. Interestingly, we haven't done as well in the 1st Quarter as I remember. It hasn't been nearly as dismal as the 3rd, but not as good as 2nd and 4th.

RedTUS12 likes this

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Thanks for the meat and potatoes bro. You have to wonder how they are going to address this in the off season. You don't know if its the coaches inability to adjust at the half or if the players just seem to be uninspired? I would definitely love to ask Coach smith this very question!

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It's certainly hard to argue with the numbers. I want to go back at some point and look at the flip side of it to see how well our defense held up by quarter. It could be very telling.

After the comments that Smitty made in his presser towards the end of the season about essentially not making adjustments during the game, you really have to wonder. That just confounds me to no end.

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I swear Mike Smith sings Drake songs to this team before the third quarter starts. Soft as putty.

Lol, it makes you wonder what is being said or done at the half!

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Interesting, nice post.

Hard to say what would cause 3rd quarter woes offensively speaking, but I have noticed it doesn't seem to be ATL's quarter. It's strange too, because the style of offense ATL runs has changed since 08 from more clock control oriented to pass happy and always going for the big play.

I think this team may be more relaxed in the 3rd quarter, and have confidence in their ability to pull it together in the 4th. They may think they just have to make sure it stays close at the end of the 3rd. That's the only thing I can think of.

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It's certainly hard to argue with the numbers. I want to go back at some point and look at the flip side of it to see how well our defense held up by quarter. It could be very telling.

After the comments that Smitty made in his presser towards the end of the season about essentially not making adjustments during the game, you really have to wonder. That just confounds me to no end.

After the final game of the season I went back & reviewed the play-by-play of every 3rd quarter looking at the defense. I wasn't looking nearly as in-depth as what you went here and I don't remember the exact results, but we did force more 3rd quarter punts than I had expected us to have done. That said, I still don't think it was great, if I remember correctly it was somewhere right around 50% of the 3rd quarter drives ended in punts (2 of which we fumbled the punt right back to the kicking team). So neither side of the ball played well in the 3rd quarter.

I am really surprised at the scoring numbers for the 1st quarter though. What I'd like to see, since the points are low, is what percentage of drives did we score on in the 1st quarter. I wonder if the low point total is maybe due to longer, sustained drives in the 1st quarter because of our penchant to script plays for the start of games. So lower point total but a high scoring percentage would still make sense there.

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