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Top Story: The Atlanta Falcons Are This Year's Team of Destiny

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Top Story: The Atlanta Falcons Are This Year's Team of Destiny

Devonta Freeman catches a checkdown pass for 35 yards to set up a touchdown. Freeman runs up the middle for 75 yards for another touchdown.

Julio Jones draws pass interference for 46 yards, gains 21 yards on a shallow crossing route and then scores a touchdown on a fade route that should be entered in the dictionary as the perfect example of a fade route.

Tevin Coleman catches a touchdown pass. Mohamed Sanu catches a touchdown pass. Justin Hardy, one of the Falcons' weekly random contributors, makes a one-handed, back-of-the-end-zone touchdown catch (pictured) that looks like something Odell Beckham Jr. would do with a butterfly net.

This has been going on all year. The Falcons scored 38 points Sunday against the Saints and averaged 33.75 points per game for the season. They have the best offense in the NFL. Better than the Cowboys. Better than the Patriots.

But what about the defense, you ask? It's not great, but it is better than you think. The Falcons allowed just 43 points in Weeks 14 to 16, entering the fourth quarter with a 25-point lead against the Saints. Then they allowed a late-game Drew Brees explosion. But they also got sacks from Vic Beasley and Grady Jarrett, two rising stars on the defensive front, and survived a scare when Beasley left the game with what turned out to be a minor injury.

So the Falcons have the best offense in the NFL and a defense with a rapidly improving corps of young stars. They have been clobbering opponents for weeks. But recognition has been glacier-slow in coming.

Matt Ryan has finally earned some grudging MVP notice, but when we start listing "dangerous, don't-wanna-face-'em" playoff teams, the Falcons always get stuck behind the Packers (Aaron Rodgers!), Steelers (Big Ben and Friends!) and even the Giants (They inexplicably win Super Bowls every few years without being all that great!).

The Falcons may truly be the Super Bowl contender all other Super Bowl contenders claim to be: the one that everyone overlooked, the one that no one gave a chance or took seriously, the one whose only believers were in the locker room.

Does that make the Falcons a "Team of Destiny"? What does "Team of Destiny" even mean?

The Falcons earned the second overall seed in the NFC playoffs. They rebuilt carefully around a quarterback and superstar wide receiver who once took them to the brink of the Super Bowl, assembling a top-flight coaching staff, drafting wisely, spending prudently and exercising patience with young prospects.

They played through a tough schedule, suffered some heartbreaking losses against strong opponents, beat a few others and kept getting better. They positioned themselves so they don't have to worry about the 12th Man, Lambeau Field or cold weather, eliminating a dome team's most dangerous foes.

The Falcons sure look and sound like a team that's destined for great things.

Does that make them a "Team of Destiny"?

It doesn't matter. Just know that they are a team you don't want to take lightly in the playoffs.

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2 minutes ago, dmo_dlo said:

I wish that was a TD. I thought he caught it and was hoping for a challenge.

It drives me nuts that Ryan's always a hair away from 5 TD's. against the Panthers in september Hooper fell on what would've been TD #5. In the Bucs game Perkins dropped a sure TD pass. Last redzone drive Sunday they were clearly trying to get TD pass #5 but just couldn't punch it in.

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2 hours ago, Drew4719 said:

 We've been beaten in past post-seasons by teams of destiny(Packers, Giants), but we are that team this year. We are the hottest team right now, even if some choose to ignore it. All the other teams are scared of us, we should have no fear of them.

We've won 7 of the last 9.  As long as can avoid laying another egg (Eagles game), I don't see anyone in the NFC stopping us from reaching the Super Bowl.

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