In wake of another porous performance by the first team defense, the team was bending over backwards to make a point about the “progress” they made against Baltimore from the San Diego game.
Defensive backs Brent Grimes, Chris Houston and Erik Coleman all mentioned the “P” word after the game.
Head coach Mike Smith is apparently talking a “baby steps” approach
with the young defense. You know, the you’ve got be able to walk before you can run, type stuff.
“I saw some very good things,” Smith said. “I thought we played the run, for the most part, extremely well. I thought we showed improvement in terms of third down efficiency. Even though it’s not where we want it to be. We improved from the previous week. We were able to put pressure on the quarterback.”
The Falcons did get four sacks.
JERRY STOUT: Rookie Peria Jerry made his second straight start.
“Peria did a nice job,” Smith said. “Peria has just continued to get better and better. His play has improved.”
THE SECONDARY BLUES: Looks like the Falcons have to play a bunch of zone defenses again this year. The defensive backs just didn’t hold up in man-to-man coverage in the preseason.
“I think they improved from the San Diego game,” Smith said. “I think there is room for improvement. I think that after that first drive, we had the pass interference penalty in that first drive, we went out and had four three-and-outs after that. I thought we played some good defense. We only allowed 4 yards on the next four Ravens series. Four net yards. That’s a positive.”
BEIRMANN SHOWS UP: Defensive end Kroy Biermann had one of the sacks and apparently will get the first shot at the designated passer role in what will likely be a six-player rotate on the defensive line behind John Abraham and Jonathan Babineaux.
“We are still working on a lot things,” Biermann said. “We are still becoming a team, working to unite and be good. We had some good stuff on the run, some good stuff on the pass. But we definitely need to keep working and keep getting better.”
The Falcons want to be an aggressive, risk taking unit. If the pass rush can get home, the corners won’t be in coverage for that long.
“That’s the kind of defense we are working to be, a get-after-them defense,” Biermann said. “Run you down and then hit you. Get after you. We were aggressive and we will continue to be aggressive.”
RYAN LIKED TUNE-UP: Quarterback Matt Ryan felt the offense had a productive preseason.
“Offensively, I think that we’ve done some things well,” Ryan said. “\We’ve tried some new things in the preseason which I think will carry into the regular season. Individually, I think guys have gotten better.”
But the big question is can the offense become a high-octane unit, while the young defense is working things out.
“We were able to score some points and move the ball offensively over the preseason,” Ryan said. “But again that’s the preseason, again it’s all about what we do from here on out. Our focus is to prepare for the Miami Dolphins and score as many points as we need to win.”