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Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez chats with AJC columnist Mark Bradly after the first practice. (D. Orlando Ledbetter/dledbetter@ajc.com

Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez chats with AJC columnist Mark Bradly after the first practice. (D. Orlando Ledbetter/dledbetter@ajc.com

MIKE SMITH, HEAD COACH: “The biggest thing for us is to stay healthy, especially in the first 10 days of training camp. We want to make sure that we’re doing everything that we can for our guys in terms of hydration, tempo of the practice, I think it’s going to be very important that we stay healthy. That’s one of our main objectives.”

MATT RYAN, QUARTERBACK: “I thought it was pretty good. Guys knocked some of the rust off. Guys came out and mentally we were pretty sharp. . . Offensively, I think it’s about fine tuning what we are good at.”

TONY GONZALEZ, TIGHT END:

Q: How much motivation is it that the New Orleans Saints are in your division?

A: “I think it’s great. It’s the best thing that can ever happen because it’s a measuring stick. It was our measuring stick last year. Both of those games, we could have won. But that’s how it goes in the NFL. But playing them twice is only a plus for us. If we can do well against them. . . the championship goes through them . . . I don’t care about the AFC or NFC, it should go through them. We’ll see.”

DUNTA ROBINSON, CORNERBACK: “You can make a lot of plays on the ball (in the Falcons defensive system). Your back is not turned as much as it was when I was playing a lot of Cover-1. It’s a new system for me, but I like it a lot. It’s a very aggressive system. We are going after the quarterback. You don’t know where the blitzers are coming from. Overall, I’m very happy with it. When I line up and look at the guys I’m playing with, I know this defense has a chance to be really special. We just have to buy into it. I love the scheme and I love the way it’s set up.”

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17 comments Add your comment

The Real Falcon

July 30th, 2010
2:52 pm

The Real Falcon

July 30th, 2010
2:53 pm

Glad to see Robinson is psyched.

Atlsuperman

July 30th, 2010
2:54 pm

Dwayne

July 30th, 2010
2:55 pm

Man, I was just thinking about last season. That schedule was brutal!! Four teams coming off of byes,our bye week in week four(way too early), and the fourth hardest schedule in the league but yet, we came away with nine wins with a lot of nagging injuries. I can defitnitely see 12 to 14 wins for this 2010 Falcons team. Hopefully Smitty will make all of the right decisions, which im sure he will. Those decisions being replacing Erik Coleman with William Moore, starting Chris Owens opposite Dunta Robinson, starting Sean Weatherspoon for Mike Peterson, and starting Kroy Bierman for Jamaal Anderson. If all of this takes place, then the Falcons will be very potent, opportunistic, and explosive both offensively and defensively. Shann Schiliger will be a special teams ace! Watch. Lets go Falcons!! Just think about it, Thomas DeCoud the ballhawk and William Moore the headhunter.. What yall think?

Atlsuperman

July 30th, 2010
2:56 pm

Dang Me! so excited bout the Training camp i read the Article twice before commenting. however good to see the players “psyched” Mostly D Rob. this year is about to be amazing

BKJ

July 30th, 2010
3:11 pm

I think this is the year Smitty and Van Gorder actually get to really run the defense they want. This D is going to be much more aggressive than the last 2 years. We finally have the pieces to take some chances and get after the QB.

RobbE33

July 30th, 2010
3:11 pm

As long as the Falcons are lucky (no injuries), hungry (play hard on every down), and smart (coaches included) we have as good a shot as anyone!

hiramsaint

July 30th, 2010
3:18 pm

wow, i’m inpressed. tony g. sais the championship goes thru new orleans. perhaps the only realistic person around

i saw brent grimes

July 30th, 2010
3:50 pm

ur mom is a realisitc person

Hamp

July 30th, 2010
4:20 pm

@ I saw bret grimes,
Dude I get mad at hiramsaint about me team but there is no place to disrect his mom. Let’s be above that on our blog. Have a good weekend

Section 108

July 30th, 2010
5:01 pm

Vince Burchfield

July 30th, 2010
5:54 pm

Here we go guys…a huge year with the rapest on the bench in the Pitts to open the season, and the great Curt Warner retired for AZ. I see us 3 and 1 with 10 or 11 wins. Go Falcons

Marko

July 31st, 2010
6:08 am

Biltzing? We played it pretty much vanillia last year. At Baltimore, Smitty was involved in developing one of the most dominent defenses in NFL history.I suspect We’ll all be pleasantly amazed by the product on the field this year. The rest of the leauge respects our birds. This year they’re going to learn to fear them.

Nola

July 31st, 2010
9:10 am

Tony Gonz knows who his daddy is. :)

Bow down ‘con fans.

Dunta is going to be eaten alive. you don’t have your back turned to the ball means the receiver can run by you all day unless you have safety help.

If you have safety help then the run game is “wide open” like a trick on old nat.

Anonomous Congressman

July 31st, 2010
9:29 pm

the only reason the saints won the superbowl was strictly political. we all know its a ploy to help the NO area. You sailnt fans better hope and pray your QB doesn’t go down just for a minute cause if he does you guys are going to be in a world of hurt. At least the birds still were able to compete you guys would self destruct!!!!!!!

EB

July 31st, 2010
9:34 pm

Yeah, it’s good to hear Robinson excited, hope they do get after the QB ALOT!!

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