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What Is Good Enough?


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Imagine the following. With a new scheme on both sides of the ball, the Falcons struggle out of the gate. They narrowly lose in game one, then get schooled a bit by the Giants and lose a close one to Dallas. We are 0-3. However, during the 3 losses there have been fixable scheme breakdowns that have led to easy points for the opponents. In addition, our defense has been disruptive at times penetrating gaps and dropping backs for losses on early downs. Our average margin of defeat is 7 points with an ugly effort in week two in our first road game in the Big Apple. We have 4 sacks and 10 total tackles for loss in the 3 games. Our offense is searching, and Ryan has looked a bit like a rookie trying to figure out the new system while getting on the same page with his new slot receiver. On the bright side, the offense has averaged over 100 yards per game rushing and Ryan has only been sacked 4 times.

In week 5, we get run over by Clowney and Watt. They simply prove too much for our OL.

Our first win comes in week 5 vs the Redskins. We seem to be putting the offense together. Ryan throws for a 67% completion rate and 2 TDs. We run for 120 and 2 scores. Meanwhile, Beastly sacks RG2 twice and Kroy has 2 tackles for losses and a forced fumble as he makes the most of his reduced snap count while playing with an obvious chip on his shoulder.

We are heading to NO for our first division game with a 1-4 record.

At this point, how would you feel? Would you have played a role in four TATF meltdowns? Would you be totally without hope? Will you be the one to start 48 threads saying the Smith was a scape goat and TD is still the only real problem?

As for me:

  • I would feel that the slow start was predictable.
  • I would feel encouraged by the positive signs.
  • I would be feeling like our season pretty much rested on that first division game. Win? All is good. Lose? Well, there is always next year. However, I would feel really good about our chances. The Saints are on the decline. I'm sure of it.

Ultimately, I'm pretty much a bottom liner. Any team that doesn't win the Superbowl fails. I don't see much difference between 2-14 and losing the Championship game. I've seen this team win every other game. Until they win a Superbowl, it is all the same to me. That said, I'm realistic. I think we could come out of the gate hot. However, I think it is very likely that there will be some growing pains with a new approach on both sides of the ball.

The silver lining in our season is this: We have a month and a half to hit our stride. Our season starts in week 6 for all intents and purposes. As demonstrated last year, if you win you six division games, it really doesn't matter what happens the rest of the way. If you only win five, your going to have to make some good things happen occasionally against the rest of the league.

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I'd be disappointed if the Falcons start 1-4 this upcoming season. The roster will be improved. The offense will finally have a running game. The defense will feature a completely new, aggressive, ball-hawking style that will bring speed, better pass rush pressure and solid tackling.

The new HC will have this team ready to play. I don't see them stumbling around, missing tackles and coughing up big plays on defense every 3rd and long. It might happen, but to me to expect it seems like an unnecessarily pessimistic viewpoint. I'm thinking we'll be 3-2 or 4-1 after the first five games.

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I'd be disappointed if the Falcons start 1-4 this upcoming season. The roster will be improved. The offense will finally have a running game. The defense will feature a completely new, aggressive, ball-hawking style that will bring speed, better pass rush pressure and solid tackling.

The new HC will have this team ready to play. I don't see them stumbling around, missing tackles and coughing up big plays on defense every 3rd and long. It might happen, but to me to expect it seems like an unnecessarily pessimistic viewpoint. I'm thinking we'll be 3-2 or 4-1 after the first five games.

I sure hope ur right pokersteve... I'd probably be ok at 2-2 with all new coaches, new O, new D, and some young rookie starters... knowing we could work the kinks out and get better during the season.

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Imagine the following. With a new scheme on both sides of the ball, the Falcons struggle out of the gate. They narrowly lose in game one, then get schooled a bit by the Giants and lose a close one to Dallas. We are 0-3. However, during the 3 losses there have been fixable scheme breakdowns that have led to easy points for the opponents. In addition, our defense has been disruptive at times penetrating gaps and dropping backs for losses on early downs. Our average margin of defeat is 7 points with an ugly effort in week two in our first road game in the Big Apple. We have 4 sacks and 10 total tackles for loss in the 3 games. Our offense is searching, and Ryan has looked a bit like a rookie trying to figure out the new system while getting on the same page with his new slot receiver. On the bright side, the offense has averaged over 100 yards per game rushing and Ryan has only been sacked 4 times.

In week 5, we get run over by Clowney and Watt. They simply prove too much for our OL.

Our first win comes in week 5 vs the Redskins. We seem to be putting the offense together. Ryan throws for a 67% completion rate and 2 TDs. We run for 120 and 2 scores. Meanwhile, Beastly sacks RG2 twice and Kroy has 2 tackles for losses and a forced fumble as he makes the most of his reduced snap count while playing with an obvious chip on his shoulder.

We are heading to NO for our first division game with a 1-4 record.

At this point, how would you feel? Would you have played a role in four TATF meltdowns? Would you be totally without hope? Will you be the one to start 48 threads saying the Smith was a scape goat and TD is still the only real problem?

As for me:

  • I would feel that the slow start was predictable.
  • I would feel encouraged by the positive signs.
  • I would be feeling like our season pretty much rested on that first division game. Win? All is good. Lose? Well, there is always next year. However, I would feel really good about our chances. The Saints are on the decline. I'm sure of it.

Ultimately, I'm pretty much a bottom liner. Any team that doesn't win the Superbowl fails. I don't see much difference between 2-14 and losing the Championship game. I've seen this team win every other game. Until they win a Superbowl, it is all the same to me. That said, I'm realistic. I think we could come out of the gate hot. However, I think it is very likely that there will be some growing pains with a new approach on both sides of the ball.

The silver lining in our season is this: We have a month and a half to hit our stride. Our season starts in week 6 for all intents and purposes. As demonstrated last year, if you win you six division games, it really doesn't matter what happens the rest of the way. If you only win five, your going to have to make some good things happen occasionally against the rest of the league.

I'll be honest --- going to N.O. with a 1-4 record? I'd be pi$$ed!!! If we want to have a decent season, and have a chance at winning the NFC South, we NEED to be at least 3-2 at that point.

If you look at our schedule after 6 games, there's not many "patsies" left --- and it could get REAL interesting down the stretch, if we don't start FAST!!! I'm expecting 5-3 at the mid-point, and at least 10 wins on the season, for it to be considered a decent year, and a chance at the Playoffs ---

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A dose of reality? Honestly, we do not know what they have yet. My optimism abounds this time of year too, but they probably will not go undefeated... Can't wait to see some live action. I believe playoffs this year though.

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I'd be disappointed if the Falcons start 1-4 this upcoming season. The roster will be improved. The offense will finally have a running game. The defense will feature a completely new, aggressive, ball-hawking style that will bring speed, better pass rush pressure and solid tackling.

The new HC will have this team ready to play. I don't see them stumbling around, missing tackles and coughing up big plays on defense every 3rd and long. It might happen, but to me to expect it seems like an unnecessarily pessimistic viewpoint. I'm thinking we'll be 3-2 or 4-1 after the first five games.

I don't see sloppy play either. I think tackling will be sharp. What i do expect to see is the occasional defender sprinting madly toward the wrong assignment as a WR begins to feel lonely in a vacated zone. Sins of commission...not omission. I will be more of a problems for the vets early on. At game speed, you tend to fall back on muscle memory. The new approach will take time.

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I'll be honest --- going to N.O. with a 1-4 record? I'd be pi$$ed!!! If we want to have a decent season, and have a chance at winning the NFC South, we NEED to be at least 3-2 at that point.

If you look at our schedule after 6 games, there's not many "patsies" left --- and it could get REAL interesting down the stretch, if we don't start FAST!!! I'm expecting 5-3 at the mid-point, and at least 10 wins on the season, for it to be considered a decent year, and a chance at the Playoffs ---

I think our schedule is pretty simple to figure out. If we sweep Carolina, all the rest of those daunting games and games everyone else in our division has to play as well for the most part. With the exception of 2 games, your division shares your schedule. Season analysis always comes down to how you do in your division.

2-4 doesn't sting as much if you are 1-0 in division games. In my scenario, the 3 conference losses (2 vs teams who are potential playoff contenders) would be the real pain point. That can still be overcome with division wins.

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A dose of reality? Honestly, we do not know what they have yet. My optimism abounds this time of year too, but they probably will not go undefeated... Can't wait to see some live action. I believe playoffs this year though.

This thread is more about the does of reality. There is a sense of euphoria here post draft. I agree with your assessment. It is hard to know the facts till you see them in action. Because of the new approach and the new faces, I don't think we will know what we have until halfway through the season.

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Can't see us losing to the Giants but I would be mad. Smitty took us to 11-5 from 4-12. As heralded as Quinn has been I'm at least expecting Playoffs. 1-4 ain't getting us in

The Giants were last year where we are this year. New scheme on offense. It took Eli a while to figure that out. They were actually very solid on offense last season once they figured things out. Beckham is the real deal, and they have worked on their o-line. I expect them to compete in the East. That said, I live in Giants country, so I can stand the thought of losing to them. I take too much grief over such things!

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Honestly? I will be very disappointed if we don't make the playoffs this year.

Me to. That is really my point. Don't throw in the towel if we get off to a slow start. I expect this team to gain momentum as the season progresses. If our OL holds up, we have the talent on offense to play with anyone. As long as our defense breaks into the top 23 or so, I like our chances.

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This team will have no excuse for starting 1-4. We're not an expansion team, we have a franchise QB with plenty of weapons, and we have a defense that will at least have a pulse this year. There will be struggles throughout the year but being 1-4 will be very disappointing, and quite frankly, unacceptable.

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Ultimately, I'm pretty much a bottom liner. Any team that doesn't win the Superbowl fails. I don't see much difference between 2-14 and losing the Championship game. I've seen this team win every other game. Until they win a Superbowl, it is all the same to me.

You put waaaay too much detail into your first several paragraphs to be someone who has the mentality expressed above. If there is no difference in 2-14 and reaching the conference championship games, then there is no reason to give a crap about whether the rush game netted 120 yards or 12 yards, or individual stats like how many sacks the rookie got. People who say they think anything short of the Super Bowl is "failure" are either radically overstating how they feel or they've never personally invested the time and effort necessary to be successful in competitive-anything. Not winning it all can be devastatingly disappointing, but losing in the Super Bowl or even the NFCCG is a BIG difference than being 2-14.

Having said all that, "good enough" next season will be 10 wins. That would be a +4 turnaround, double-digit wins, and most likely a playoff berth. No one should complain about a 1st year HC achieving those results. 9-7 is a harder result to judge without knowing how games were lost and what injuries were sustained. Honestly, barring a slew of games lost to injuries or a season-ending injury to Ryan, anything less than 9-7 should not be viewed as "good enough." The 2014 team, with simply competent game-management, would have been 8-8.

Oh, and as for the first five games, i expect somewhere between 2-3 and 3-2. Anything better and i'll be thrilled; anything less and i'll be disappointed.

Edited by Kaptain Krazy
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I'd be disappointed if the Falcons start 1-4 this upcoming season. The roster will be improved. The offense will finally have a running game. The defense will feature a completely new, aggressive, ball-hawking style that will bring speed, better pass rush pressure and solid tackling.

The new HC will have this team ready to play. I don't see them stumbling around, missing tackles and coughing up big plays on defense every 3rd and long. It might happen, but to me to expect it seems like an unnecessarily pessimistic viewpoint. I'm thinking we'll be 3-2 or 4-1 after the first five games.

I'm pretty sure this is said every time the Falcons (or any other team) hire a new coach.

Is the roster improved? Probably. But it was an awful roster in the first place.

The offense will finally have a running game? Why, because we drafted a RB in the 3rd round?

"The defense will feature a completely new...." you can stop there because that's the only thing guaranteed.

Sorry to be such a downer, but I don't think you people realize how bad this team really is. This draft had better be legendary if the Falcons want to make the playoffs.

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0-4 I'd be be severely pissed if they start 0-4.

The obvious caveat is if they are healthy and how quickly Falcons pick up new offense and defense. But you got the Eagles at home opening day Monday night, joint should be rocking a little. Bradford and Murray both in new offense and new team, can see the Falcons winning this. Falcons seem to find a way to lose in New York but Giants will be coming off a trip to Dallas and Cruz might not be back. Dallas will be tough, that OL is **** good,but they will still be trying to incorporate their running game with Mc Fadden etc. Think later in the year all 3 of these teams will be a helluva a lot tougher but getting them early helps. Think Falcons raise their intensity with the new staff at least early in the season,and they lose some of those bad habits. i.e. flat 3rd quarters, and being too conservative. 5-3 6-2 @the break

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I'm pretty sure this is said every time the Falcons (or any other team) hire a new coach.

Is the roster improved? Probably. But it was an awful roster in the first place.

The offense will finally have a running game? Why, because we drafted a RB in the 3rd round?

"The defense will feature a completely new...." you can stop there because that's the only thing guaranteed.

Sorry to be such a downer, but I don't think you people realize how bad this team really is. This draft had better be legendary if the Falcons want to make the playoffs.

Not really. We would have had at least an 8-8 record last year if there had been any type of professional level game management. Not to mention we were one game (albeit a stinker vs Carolina) from sweeping the division. Another game where we only had 4 o lineman for the last quarter, that should have been a win.

Is there a long way to go for the Falcons? Absolutely... But we're far from the black hole of talent that is being laid out here.

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Division Champs, playoff birth. From there, everything else is gravy.

Sorry I'm not on the Super Bowl or bust team. I like enjoying football. I want a Super Bowl probably as much as anyone on here, to the point where I have placed a bet on us winning it multiple times. That being said, a Super Bowl win is a dream season. I am satisfied winning the Division. I am ecstatic with us winning the NFC Championship. And I have no idea what it will feel like when we finally win a Super Bowl.

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