Well, it was fun while it lasted Falcons fans. The seemingly unstoppable defense was crushed by Jameis Winston in a game that ran away from Atlanta very quickly. The secondary couldn’t stop Godwin and the pass rush couldn’t get in the backfield. The offense couldn’t hold up their end either. Despite being absolutely dominant the past two weeks, the Atlanta Falcons fell apart on Sunday and returned to their old ways. Let’s dive into what wrong on Sunday for the Falcons.
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It was quite clear every week that the offense wasn’t the problem. That wasn’t the case in this game. Even Julio Jones was having problems all day. Matt Ryan couldn’t get any support as he was wrecked in the backfield all day. Once again, the run game was completely absent, despite Qadree Ollison’s second touchdown in as many games. However, both tight end Jaedan Graham and wide receiver Russell Gage showed out. Graham blew the top off the Bucs defense to start the game for 53 yards. Meanwhile, Gage recorded eight receptions for 76 yards.
It’s clear the Atlanta Falcons are missing both Austin Hooper and Devonta Freeman. However, there is good news. Hooper was running around at practice before the Bucs game but was still listed as out. He could potentially make his return this Thursday in a big match-up with the Saints. Freeman is still a question mark, but if he doesn’t return this Thursday, he’ll almost certainly be back next Sunday against the Panthers.
After a spectacular two weeks, the Falcons defense finally had their meltdown. The pass rush was non-existent and the run game was destroying the front seven. Despite adding another two turnovers (albeit, it was Jameis Winston), the secondary couldn’t stop anyone, especially Chris Godwin. The Penn State product recorded seven catches for 184 yards and two scores.
It wasn’t just Godwin, everyone was getting a piece of this toast. The Falcons were burnt all day and they looked like they have been all season long. This is a bad look for Dan Quinn, as it looked like he might have been able to save his job after all. However, that changed on Sunday, and if he can’t quickly straighten things out, then it’ll be game over. Whether it was this game or the last two that was a fluke, we will figure out in the coming weeks.
Next Thursday, to headline the three Thanksgiving games, the Atlanta Falcons will stay at home to take on the Saints in hopes of another upset.
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