GATXBOI Posted October 18, 2015 Share Posted October 18, 2015 FALCONSAtlanta Falcons: Legitimate Playoff Contender? by Matthew Schoettler 19h ago FOLLOW @MLBFANTASYHQ TWEET SHARE COMMENTSThe Atlanta Falcons started the 2015 season by winning their first five games; however, after a poor week-six, are the Falcons a legitimate playoff team?In week-one of the 2015 season, the Atlanta Falcons hosted the new-look Philadelphia Eagles. The Falcons held the Eagles offense to just three points in the first-half of play, stopping Chip Kellys high-octane offense. However, in the second-half, the Eagles outscored the Falcons 21 to six. The Falcons edged the Eagles by a score of 26-24 off of a Matt Bryant fourth quarter field goal to earn their first win of the season and Dan Quinns first career win.-= Related: Atlanta Falcons Lose 1st Game of Season, Fall to Saints 31-21 =-Through the first few weeks of the 2015 season, the Philadelphia Eagles offense looked anemic; thus, it is concerning that the Atlanta Falcons almost gave up a 17-point lead at halftime. The Falcons controlled the game clock, possessing the ball 11 minutes more than the Eagles. Also, Kiko Alonso made a one-handed interception in the end-zone off of Matt Ryan that kept the game closer than the score box shows.The Atlanta Falcons skated by the Eagles with a fourth quarter win, and they moved on to face the New York Giants on the road. The Giants went up on the Falcons in the second quarter and padded their lead to 20-10 in the third. However, the Falcons defense held up in the fourth quarter, shutting out the Giants. By not giving up any points in the fourth quarter, this allowed the Falcons to make their second fourth quarter comeback of the season, scoring two touchdowns to win 24-20. MORE FROM ATL ALL DAYTouki Toussaint: Atlanta Braves Smartest Trade in 2015?3h agoGeorgia Bulldogs: 4 Things Learned vs. Missouri7h agoGeorgia Bulldogs Win a Game of Kicks at Home Against Mizzou14h agoGeorgia Tech Yellow Jackets Fall at Home to Pitt 31-28, Lose 5th Straight Game21h agoAtlanta Hawks: Preseason Game 4 Takeaways1d agoDuring the week-two matchup, Tevin Coleman suffered a cracked rib injury that forced him out of action, but it allowed Devonta Freeman to assume the lead-back role, a silver-lining to Colemans injury. Once again, the Falcons out-possessed the opposition. Matt Ryan threw for a season-high 380 yards with one touchdown en-route to the teams second win of the season.Following back-to-back comeback victories, the Atlanta Falcons headed to Jerry World to face the Dallas Cowboys. The Cowboys ran all over the Falcons, rushing for four touchdowns in the first half (three by Randle, one by McFadden). The Falcons looked destined for a blowout; however, Dan Quinn must have said something at halftime to fire up the squad.The Falcons trailed the Cowboys 28-25 entering the fourth quarter, but Devonta Freeman scored his third rushing touchdown of the game to put the Falcons up 32-28. The Falcons added another touchdown on a two-yard pass by Matt Ryan in the fourth to ice the game. The Falcons shut out the Cowboys in the second half of this game to earn their third-consecutive fourth quarter comeback. Notably, Tony Romo suffered an injury the week before, and the Cowboys had Brandon Weeden at quarterback.In week four, the Atlanta Falcons hosted the Houston Texans, and the Falcons destroyed the Texans, jumping out to a 42-0 lead before the Texans started scoring in garbage time. The Texans were without Arian Foster, and Bill OBrien continued to play musical chairs with his quarterbacks. The Falcons ended up winning 48-21, flexing their muscles in this game. This game marked the first time all season that the Falcons were the clear-cut winner of a game.The Falcons entered week-five with a 4-0 record, and they hosted the Washington Redskins in Atlanta. After an anticlimactic first half, the Atlanta Falcons found themselves down in the fourth quarter for the fourth time in five games. With 30 seconds remaining in the game, Devonta Freeman scored to put the Falcons up 19-16; however, the Falcons allowed the Redskins to knock in a field goal with five seconds left to tie the game.In overtime, the Atlanta Falcons intercepted Kirk Cousins and returned the interception for a touchdown to end the game. The pick-6 in overtime vaulted the Falcons to 5-0, with an impressive four-fourth quarter comeback victories. Dan Quinns team continued to stay hot as he improved on his unbeaten record to start his coaching career. With a 5-0 record heading into week-six, the Falcons jumped to the top three in ESPNs power rankings.Week-six presented a tough challenge for the Atlanta Falcons as the headed to New Orleans to play the Saints on Thursday Night Football. The Saints quickly jumped out to a 14-0 lead in the first quarter, and the Falcons looked overmatched from the beginning. At the end of the third quarter, the Saints were up big on the Falcons, 24-7. If the Falcons wanted to remain unbeaten, they needed another fourth quarter comeback; however, this time, they had to overcome a 17-point deficit.The Saints continued to roll in the second half, and the Falcons ended up losing 31-21 after Devonta Freeman scored in garbage time to cut the deficit. The Falcons started a trend of being down in the fourth quarter in week-one, having trailed in the fourth quarter of every game except week-four. Trailing in the fourth quarter is a recipe for disaster, so if the Atlanta Falcons plan on making a run for the playoffs, they need to stop the trend of trailing in the fourth quarter.The Atlanta Falcons have one of the easiest schedules in all of the NFL, with the Indianapolis Colts and Carolina Panthers posing the biggest threat. The Falcons are likely to make the playoffs this season as either the NFC South Champions or via the wild card. The Falcons defense greatly improved over the offseason, likely due to Dan Quinns defensive-minded approach (oh and the Seahawks defense was pretty good too).The Falcons have a chance to go 14-2, but 12 wins seems more probable. Not many people are high on the Panthers performances thus far. The Panthers offense looks weak; while, their defense looks like the real deal. The Atlanta Falcons have a more balanced team, but their defense seemed exploited by a finally-healthy Drew Brees. Look for the Falcons to right the ship in week-seven against a poor Tennessee Titans team. The Falcons seem destined for the playoffs with their improved team and weak schedulehttps://atlallday.com/2015/10/17/atlanta-falcons-legitimate-playoff-contender/ Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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