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My Take From Yesterdays Game: We Are A Legitimate Super Bowl Contender


gazoo
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My expectations for this season have jumped dramatically from what I thought before the game. I was hoping to go 9-7 this year and never thought we had a realistic shot at the division , perhaps an outside shot at the playoffs as we tried to rebound from that 4-12 debacle.

Yesterday's game changed my calculus.

After seeing our offense totally dominate what was the NFLs 4th rated defense last year + J. Byrd, AND after watching our defense make all those mistakes and still be able to prevent the Saints from easy, cheap Tds, after watching two outstanding young CBs really keep Drew Brees in check, after seeing Matt Ryan bust out from a very good QB to an elite one right in front of my eyes yesterday and also overcome tons of penalties, this team is definitely in the hunt for the division title and legitimately in the Super Bowl hunt this year.

It wasn't just that we won the game, it was the way we won it. Every time we got hit in the mouth we hit back harder, every time they mounted a counter attack, we followed up the same....what an amazing amount of leadership Matt Ryan displayed.

We clean up a lot of those mistakes from all the new faces, and we can beat any team in the league. In fact, we just beat one of the best even with all those mistakes.

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That defense needs a lot of improvement. It could happen, but it might not. But any talk of Super Bowls starts and ends with improved defensive play. We aren't beating a lot of playoff teams giving up 34 points and allowing teams to score on us at will. Opportunistic or not, that will get you killed in the playoffs.

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First, you can't tell if a team is a SB contender until they play on the road. Especially with a defense as weak in pass rush as this one. Opponents playing at home won't have a loud crowd to deal with, and their QB will have plenty of time to throw.

Second, the OL played lights out yesterday given that they began the game w/o one starting OT and played the entire 2nd half with two backups - but, depletion of depth is a concern if Matthews misses more than one game. Lack of depth at LB is similar with 'Spoon already being lost for the season.

i've said all along, the schedule is brutal. If the Falcons are better than .500 after the first ten games (only three games in the Dome during that stretch), they will make the playoffs. If they are better than 6-4, then i'll consider them a legit contender. LOTS of road games in the near future.

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First of all, it is good to see Gazoo posting regularly. You always add something salient to the conversation.

The first half really looked terrible. I was ready to switch it off and take another blood pressure pill. I was very impressed with the showing in the second half.

The DL really stepped up to the plate. Despite my irrational hate of the Saints, I have to admit that Drew Brees is an incredible QB. Our defense did a great job of keeping Brees off balance and forcing him to make less than accurate throws.

Once Matthews came out of the game, I expected an offensive melt down. Thanks again to coaching, we were prepared and Matt was able to spread the ball around. It is very impressive to see the ball in so many different hands. I'd like to see more of the same for the rest of the season.

I'd like to recognize the amazing improvement of Levine Toilolo. I heard that he has been putting in a lot of post-practice work with the jugs machine.........His hard work is paying off. If he keeps this up, he will be the quiet red-zone killer of our offense.

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Neither of the teams on the field yesterday were Super Bowl contenders, if those are the defenses that will be fielded.

We will have to wait and see how they look against more average offenses. I think they will both be better. Might be the two best offenses in the league yesterday, so many weapons and great QBs.

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That defense needs a lot of improvement. It could happen, but it might not. But any talk of Super Bowls starts and ends with improved defensive play. We aren't beating a lot of playoff teams giving up 34 points and allowing teams to score on us at will. Opportunistic or not, that will get you killed in the playoffs.

Defense is still feeling itself out, there was some signs of life out there against a great offense.

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Neither of the teams on the field yesterday were Super Bowl contenders, if those are the defenses that will be fielded.

I don't necessarily disagree with you on that, but how many QBs in the league are capable of the kind of performances we saw from Ryan and Brees yesterday week-in and week-out? Look at how Cutler and Brady performed yesterday. Granted, the Dolphins have a decent D, but the Bills? Most of the QBs in this league are marginal at best and there are only a hand full of defenses that are really a threat in this league (apart from Seattle and maybe the Niners). So, I'm taking the Falcons and Saints defenses with a grain of salt. I wouldn't be surprised at all if these two teams met in the playoffs down the road.

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We can't expect franchise records every week from Ryan. Awesome to know we can play like that, but I can't "expect" that each week.

"I don't always set franchise records but when I do I prefer the Saints!"

I'm just trying to temper expectations after a huge win that felt really good.

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We have always known what the deal with our defense is, they will have to grow with this season.

Either they will and we will become SB contenders or they won't. They don't need to be amazing but they must be better than yesterday.

There were plenty of positives from the defense yesterday. Something's looked easy for the saints but they battled much better than any defense we've had recently. They grinded things out.

And how many offenses will we play like the Saints this year?

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Remarkable how difficult it is for some to follow a simple argument. Posters are reading all kinds of things into my post that I never said or implied.

I clearly pointed out we made a ton of mistakes. In fact, on defense many of the 3rd down conversions were due to mistakes and miscues. This fact is a cause for celebration for me, because we were able to overcome them and more importantly miscues and mistakes can be corrected. I don't just look at the stat sheet and start panicking as if the sky is falling like some of you. I EXPECT mistakes on our first game, with a new DL coach and several new starters. My goodness folks, stop with the knee jerk emotional responses and try to follow the argument.

What really impressed me was the fact we OVERCAME those mistakes and beat once of the teams all prognosticators say are in the Super Bowl hunt, the fact they are a well oiled veteran team and we have so many new pieces AND STILL beat them, not to mention THE. IMPRESSIVE way we kept fighting back, THE FACT THAT I. FULLY EXPECT us to clean up the mistakes on both sides of the ball, the fact we had the depth to deal with our LT going down and STILL protected Ryan and didn't miss a beat, all these things combined tell me we are championship caliber. Now, there are more than two teams championship caliber so that statement does not mean. I'm predicting we will win the Super. Bowl. My God folks, I'm simply saying we have a seat at the table now where before this game I did not think so.

So all you whiny baby's who want to read into my post things I never said as if I said yesterday's product was the final product and yesterday's performance would win a Super Bowl, carry on. I'm too busy seeing the tremendous promise of this team as we start to gel and get rid of the mistakes.

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That defense needs a lot of improvement. It could happen, but it might not. But any talk of Super Bowls starts and ends with improved defensive play. We aren't beating a lot of playoff teams giving up 34 points and allowing teams to score on us at will. Opportunistic or not, that will get you killed in the playoffs.

To be fair, Drew Brees will pick apart any defense in a dome. I think they did a good job of their opportunities, tightened up on the run, and best of all, they defended the **** out of Jimmy Graham

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All those weapons are going to make a lot of defenses look bad falcons and saints are going to humble a lot of defenses and some offenses too. Both teams safeties made game changing plays, luckily ours made the last, love Moore. Byrd made a play he's a game changer too. Falcons and saints might meet three times this year. I hope so it would be great to step on their necks to win a Superbowl.

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If we get Jake healthy and find a semblance of a rush I am with you, but the pressure was non existent. I am nervous of facing that Cincy front 7 with Holmes and Carimi although they both were outstanding last nite...just need to see a little more to buy in totally. .I tried to tell everyone the Bear Jew was going to be pretty good here.

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Neither of the teams on the field yesterday were Super Bowl contenders, if those are the defenses that will be fielded.

I have to disagree. They need to be better, but I really think that both of those passing games are **** near unstoppable. We have already proven we can get past Seattle. You guys played them down to the final snap of the game at their place just 8 months ago. I really think that both teams can beat Seattle this year. The way these teams were moving the ball yesterday was insane. It wasnt like Brees and Ryan were getting easy passes with no pressure and just destroying the opposition. **** near every pass was contested. Their was consistent pressure in the QB's face (well at least for Ryan lol) and yet they still kept avoiding the rush, keeping their eyes downfield and delivering strikes to WR's that found a way to get open. It was beautiful. When those teams are moving the ball like that, no defense can stop them.
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I have to disagree. They need to be better, but I really think that both of those passing games are **** near unstoppable. We have already proven we can get past Seattle. You guys played them down to the final snap of the game at their place just 8 months ago. I really think that both teams can beat Seattle this year. The way these teams were moving the ball yesterday was insane. It wasnt like Brees and Ryan were getting easy passes with no pressure and just destroying the opposition. **** near every pass was contested. Their was consistent pressure in the QB's face (well at least for Ryan lol) and yet they still kept avoiding the rush, keeping their eyes downfield and delivering strikes to WR's that found a way to get open. It was beautiful. When those teams are moving the ball like that, no defense can stop them.

That's a bold statement seeing as how Seattle played on Thursday night. That defense shut down Rodgers, Lacy, and Nelson.

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I think the title "Superbowl contender" is such a hotbutton and over-the-top phrase that it invited some backlash, even though your post content was balanced.

All that said - I agree and I am encouraged we can fight and stay on the field with anybody like you said - we just proved we could.

Whether that gets to a Superbowl just has too much luck in a long season.

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The offense looks like a Super Bowl contending offense (assuming Jake is ok).

The defense does not look like a Super Bowl contending defense, far from it.

The good news is we have a ton of youth on defense that reasonably should be expected to get better and more cohesive as the season continues.

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That's a bold statement seeing as how Seattle played on Thursday night. That defense shut down Rodgers, Lacy, and Nelson.

thats because GB had an awful gameplan. they literally admitted that they refused to test richard sherman. you wont win that way. period. they allowed him to take away half the field. our gameplan against seattle was to go right after sherman, and it worked. yes, he is going to bat some balls away, but you can also beat him too. he isnt good enough that GB should be avoiding him the entire game. that is literally the reason they lost. they wouldnt attack him and it limited their offense severely.

not only that, but GB has an awful run defense, which is seattles offensive strength. so you could say it was a bad matchup too. we have some meat up front and should be able to hold them in check on the ground and force passes from wilson.

and despite everything they did wrong, GB still made it relatively competitive too.

Edited by Truth.
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