Video: 3 keys vs. the Ravens


57 comments Add your comment

G

November 10th, 2010
11:27 am

Buzz

November 10th, 2010
11:42 am

Close but no cigar!!!!!!!

Keith

November 10th, 2010
12:01 pm

Good points. Basically a pick-em game tomorrow night. I hope the Falcons can pull it out!! I think it will come down to who turns over the ball less….

GO FALCONS! :)

Sid

November 10th, 2010
12:03 pm

G, you can’t be first if you are at the bottom of the page……………….

I.MUS WRITE

November 10th, 2010
12:03 pm

Being first and saying “im First” is so gay

Tea Party Meber

November 10th, 2010
12:10 pm

I saw and copy this from Pat Yankshire on ESPN:

Tight end: Tony Gonzalez, Falcons. He’s on the downside of his career

I menitoned this B 4 and everone laffed at me well now some 1 else notice and they work 4 ESPN

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by D. Orlando Ledbetter and D. Orlando Ledbetter, Noah Coslov. Noah Coslov said: Thursday night football is here – 3 Keys for #Falcons vs. #Ravens – http://bit.ly/aXbBEg – from @ajcfalcons #CineSport [...]

DirtyByrdATLien

November 10th, 2010
12:15 pm

Play Smart & Aggressive, Falcons will win 31-24…

Sid

November 10th, 2010
12:17 pm

Tea Party Meber

November 10th, 2010
12:10 pm
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ESPN has sanitation engineers just like everyone else.

Inside voice

November 10th, 2010
12:19 pm

Please…..next time, use your inside voice. No need to yell…..We can all hear you.

PMC

November 10th, 2010
12:31 pm

Tony G’s just had 8 catches for what 80 something yards?

Yes he’s in his 30’s…. no he’s not as good as he was 5 years ago.

But right now, he’s as good or better than any TE we have ever had in this city.

G

November 10th, 2010
12:51 pm

@Sid

D-Led Effed up his blog so I guess people need to start writing last bc of the backwards format!

Jesse Stone

November 10th, 2010
12:51 pm

DOL- Can you do something about this format. I don’t know the term that means the opposite of “user friendly”, but this is it.

JSS

November 10th, 2010
1:17 pm

“But right now, he’s as good or better than any TE we have ever had in this city.”
It’s like when people realized Emmitt Smith could no longer hit the hole anymore or Jerry Rice had finally reached the end. It’s obvious to everyone except Atlanta sports fans. When Crumpler was working with two good knees, it’s a wash (present Gonzalez v. then Crumpler). You people keep disrespecting the late Jim Mitchell (in his prime) who could actually block and punish tacklers or a young Junior Miller. It’s always interesting to just see it in black and white… I give Gonzalez route running, he can’t clear a zone anymore; but he gives Ryan a target…

@ Jesse Stone…
I answered your remark about Winslow and the Spanos family…

G

November 10th, 2010
1:40 pm

@JSS

I will agree with you that Gonzo is not what he once was but he is still far superior than the majority of the TEs in the league. Other than Antonio Gates no one stands out as being better than Gonzo to me.

PMC

November 10th, 2010
1:46 pm

Crumpler was very good. I’m not disrespecting Alge he wore down over time too. I don’t see him as being any better than Tony Gonzalez.

Tony Gonzalez will be a hall of famer. Alge may be in the ring of honor.

What’s not obvious to Atlanta sports fans? That Tony Gonzalez is in decline? NO kidding. When did anyone ever say that?

I never understand why you are constantly negative JSS.
Did I say he’s a great blocker?

JSS

November 10th, 2010
1:55 pm

@ G…
Interesting… Better than and more dangerous than Vernon Davis? Better than Zach Miller? Better than Dustin Keller? That’s a serious observation…

G

November 10th, 2010
2:01 pm

@JSS
Look at the statistics….those guys are in their prime and not out performing Gonzo

JSS

November 10th, 2010
2:09 pm

See negative would be: “Tony Gonzalez was never good!”
See honesty is: “Tony Gonzalez is one of the best tight ends to ever play pro football.”
See negative is: “Justin Peele is better than Tony Gonzalez.” Did I ever make that kind of a statement?
See honesty is: “Darren Sharper is a better on the ball safety than Thomas DeCoud.”
See negative is: “David Archer is better than Matt Ryan.” Did I ever make that kind of a statement?
See honesty is: “Kellan Winslow is the best Tight End to ever play in the modern NFL.”
See negative is: “Michael Turner has no talent.”
See honesty is: “Michael Turner is very effective when his line gets him to the second level.”

There is a best difference between being “negative” and being “honest.”

JSS

November 10th, 2010
2:19 pm

@ G…
Been looking at them all morning, all Gonzalez leads any of them is in receptions. Davis by 4, but Davis has nearly 70 more yards in total yds. And his per catch yardage dwarfs TG. Keller has 7 less catches but nearly 83 more yards.. Zach Miller a whopping 97 more yards… These guys are playing with such accuracy kings as Alex Smith, Jeff Sanchez, and Jason Campbell…

G

November 10th, 2010
2:31 pm

Gonzo leads those guys in 1st down catches (other than Dustin Keller). And 70 yrds more receiving is not very much considering they have played 8 games. That comes down to 8.75 yrds more per game. I would rather have my TE be better in first down catches than ypg.

Sid

November 10th, 2010
2:37 pm

Vinnie Iyer, Sporting News:

Not so long ago, it was easy to identify the NFL’s elite tight ends. During the NFL’s passing explosion, however, it now seems like every team has a special athlete who can serve as both a surehanded receiver and nimble blocker.

To whittle the league’s current crop of talented tight ends down a select 10, Sporting News enlisted the help of NFL Network analyst Brian Baldinger. Here is Baldinger’s rankings of the top tight ends heading into the 2010 season:

1. Tony Gonzalez, Falcons. There are no signs of a drop off with any part of his game. He remains the gold standard — an athletic receiver and physical blocker to whom modern tight ends are measured.

2. Jason Witten, Cowboys. He’s the consummate professional. You know what you will get game after game: A hardnosed effort where he leaves everything on the field. He’s an essential third-down option for Tony Romo.

3. Antonio Gates, Chargers. San Diego was wise to lock him up to a long-term deal last week. As a matchup nightmare, he opens up the field for the rest of the receivers. He’ll also be counted on to recharge a power running game.

4. Dallas Clark, Colts. He is the best and smoothest route-runner we’ve ever seen at the position. He can line up and get to any spot on the field, and Peyton Manning will find him everywhere.

5. Vernon Davis, 49ers. He always has been a chiseled athlete who looks the part of a premier tight end, but thanks to coach Mike Singletary lighting a fire under him, he’s finally playing up to his talent. Expect another explosive season.

6. Heath Miller, Steelers. Although he lacks the flashy game or gaudy fantasy statistics, he does all it takes to help Pittsburgh win.

7. Visanthe Shiancoe, Vikings. Like Davis, Shiancoe has put together a good hands game with his impressive physique. He is unquestionably an excellent red-zone target, even better when Brett Favre is at quarterback.

8. Owen Daniels, Texans. He was right there on the cusp of joining the elite tight ends before tearing his ACL last season. If he comes back strong, he has the smarts and skills to re-stake his claim.

9. Kevin Boss, Giants. Considering New York’s offensive philosophy is to pound the football, he excels as a run blocker. In the passing game, Eli Manning has great trust in him in all situations.

10. John Carlson, Seahawks. There are several young and exciting receiving tight ends, but this one for some is the undiscovered gem of the Emerald City. He runs exceptionally well and has performed like a wide receiver in two seasons in Seattle.

mark

November 10th, 2010
2:44 pm

3rd down is critical, biggest problem has been putting pressure on the QB, allowing too much time for conversions. If we can put pressure on Flacco he has been known to throw it up for grabs. Need Robinson to step up, no picks is not going to cut it.

JSS

November 10th, 2010
2:45 pm

@ Sid…
Seriously, August 2nd? Nothing newer?

Sid

November 10th, 2010
2:56 pm

What’s wrong with August 2nd? I mean in 1819 it was the 1st parachute jump in U.S. In 1610 Henry Hudson first enters bay later named after him. In 1921 Chicago jury brings in not guilty verdict against the Black Sox.

It doesn’t matter the date, it is all opinion…………period.

JSS

November 10th, 2010
3:00 pm

It’s the camp opinion, there have been games played now… By the way, why didn’t you copy and paste the “Five to Watch” portion of the article?

eric

November 10th, 2010
3:05 pm

is it just me or do they try roberson a whole lot, they dont try grimes like that an out of the 5 times the did last week it got picked off

Sid

November 10th, 2010
3:10 pm

Camp opinion? You mean yours don’t you.

Kellen Winslow, an awesome tight end in a pass happy “Air Coryell” offense. But guess what, Mike Ditka actually put up as good as numbers.

JSS

November 10th, 2010
3:12 pm

1st Downs by Tight Ends
Gates has 35 1st down % 87.5
Miller has 25 1st down % 73.5
Gonzalez has 22 1st down % 59.5
Keller has 21 1st down % 70.0

Ueeediot

November 10th, 2010
3:17 pm

Considering the avg stay in the NFL is less than 3 years…..its pretty easy to say just about everyone is on the downside of their career.

Brett Farve…downside.
Drew Brees….downside
Peyton has been in the league 13 years….downside.

Fools.

Ueeediot

November 10th, 2010
3:18 pm

Falcons still 91% chance to make playoffs…

JSS

November 10th, 2010
3:20 pm

@ Sid…
No, I mean Iyer and Baldingers’ camp opinion since you posted a ‘Sporting News’ article from way back on August 2nd.

Obviously you didn’t read my observation on Ditka. Go check out Schultz’s blog on Gonzalez, it’s right there…

Falcon Jim

November 10th, 2010
3:26 pm

Don’t forget Junior Miller……………….

Career 71 122 1,409 11.5 14

Well, not stoic, but he was pretty good………………

Sid

November 10th, 2010
3:28 pm

Obviously you didn’t read my observation on Ditka. Go check out Schultz’s blog on Gonzalez, it’s right there…
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Send me a link and I will be happy to take a look at it…………….but my point being all the talk about Gonzalez…..it’s all conjecture………….

I think we are damn lucky to have him.

Falcon Jim

November 10th, 2010
3:31 pm

Really, Sid. Why would folks be down on TG?

Unbelievable.

Sid

November 10th, 2010
3:34 pm

Yeah, I always enjoyed watching Junior, guess he is out in Nebraska or Texas these days.

Sid

November 10th, 2010
3:36 pm

Falcon Jim

November 10th, 2010
3:31 pm
Really, Sid. Why would folks be down on TG?

Unbelievable.
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I have not a clue…………..guess some are trolls and some are just unknowlegeable football fans.

JSS

November 10th, 2010
3:39 pm

JSS
November 9th, 2010
4:29 pm

I like Gonzalez, I really do… Winslow and Newsome were better Tight Ends. They were better competitors too. Still, I won’t diminish him, he can make a place in Canton. (which I think is his prime motivation) like Ray Bourque did in the Hockey Hall of Fame… Bobby Orr was the greatest player regardless of sport I ever saw. Borque was the finest defensemen of his time (two way). Winslow is the best TE I ever saw (two way), Newsome was a distant 2nd. TG is a far 3rd. Mackay and Smith were very good. Ditka had been slowed by the time I saw him at the end of his career.

Sid

November 10th, 2010
3:44 pm

by Ryan Mink, Baltimore Sun

During the 2008 NFL Draft, rookie head coaches, John Harbaugh of the Ravens and Mike Smith of the Falcons, began one of the most important processes an NFL organization can undertake – finding their franchise quarterback.

Harbaugh said the Ravens took a “very hard” look at Boston College’s Matt Ryan. The Falcons brought in Delaware’s Joe Flacco for a workout and interview.

Ultimately, the Falcons snagged Ryan with the No. 3 overall choice. The Ravens, who had the eighth pick overall, traded back to 26th before moving back up to 18th to take Flacco.

Two-and-a-half years later, as the two quarterbacks prepare to face off for the first time in their careers, it’s clear that neither team went wrong.

Not only did the Ravens and Falcons find their long-term signal-callers, the organizations and quarterbacks themselves have each found similar success.

“I think they’re both very good quarterbacks,” Harbaugh said. “They both have all the skills to lead their team to great heights.”

When looking at the stats, it’s eerie how parallel Flacco and Ryan’s careers have been thus far.

http://tinyurl.com/25wvt55

The biggest difference is in their playoff results. Each quarterback reached the postseason in their rookie season, but Ryan lost in the opening round while Flacco advanced to the AFC Championship game. Flacco and the Ravens reached the playoffs again last year while Atlanta, who also had a 9-7 record, fell just short.

While their stats are similar, is the way they play the position more similar or different?

“Tough to say,” Ryan said. “He certainly has a skill set that’s probably a little bit different than mine. But at the same time, I think at the end of the day, more similar than different. We’re just two bigger guys that throw well from the pocket. Both of us have been able to get outside the pocket and make plays, too.”

Harbaugh also saw the similarities when speaking about Ryan with the Atlanta media.

“He’s a great leader, a tremendous arm, great touch, very accurate,” Harbaugh said. “And I think those are things that Joe and he have in common.”

Flacco and Ryan got to know each other during the lead-up to the 2008 NFL Draft. They chatted about where they grew up, which wasn’t far apart with Ryan hailing from just outside Philadelphia and Flacco being a Jersey boy.

They have spent some time together during off-the-field NFL functions, including at Kurt Warner’s summer flag football tournament. Ryan said they got to know each other “pretty well.”

“He’s a really nice guy; I have a good relationship with him,” Ryan said. “And really, I’ve been impressed with the way he’s played the last couple of years.”

Each quarterback said they pay attention to how the other one performs. It’s a comparison that likely won’t stop for many years to come.

Smith went as far as to mention the quarterback class of 1983, which included first-round quarterbacks and eventual Hall of Famers John Elway, Jim Kelly and Dan Marino.

“I think they’ll be hooked together their entire career,” Smith said of Flacco and Ryan. “I think when you come in at the same time, especially at the quarterback position – which is probably the most scrutinized position in all of sports – I think they will be. They’ll always be compared to one another, and both of them have played very effective football through these first two-and-a-half seasons.”

Flacco, said he doesn’t care about others making the comparison, but that he’s not thinking about it heading into Thursday’s game.

“I’m sure someday we’ll look at that, and hopefully we’ll both have a couple of Super Bowls – or I’ll have them all and he won’t have any,” Flacco said, inciting laughter. “But we’re still young. … We’re just out there each week trying to play well.”

Sid

November 10th, 2010
3:46 pm

JSS

November 10th, 2010
3:39 pm
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I think Tony wants a Super Bowl ring worse than a bronze bust.

JSS

November 10th, 2010
3:46 pm

“I have not a clue…………..guess some are trolls and some are just unknowlegeable football fans.”
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See, this is why no one takes the observations of Falcons loyalists (not fans) too seriously… No one is “down” on Tony Gonzalez. People are appreciating the talents of people who are or have eclipsed him as of today. That doesn’t diminish what he is…

Sid

November 10th, 2010
3:48 pm

by Ryan Mink

What’s been the key to Ravens’ offensive emergence since Week 2?

One could make a strong case for cutting down on turnovers.

Continuing that trend will be paramount for the Ravens Thursday night in Atlanta, as the Falcons are tied for second in the NFL with 13 interceptions.

“It’s huge,” wide receiver Derrick Mason said. “As long as we don’t turn the ball over, it’s very difficult for a team to beat us.”

The Falcons have 10 different players with at least one pick – tops in the league. Strong safety William Moore leads the team with three, 5-foot-10 cornerback Brent Grimes has two and nobody else has more than one.

“Their secondary is very opportunistic,” Mason said. “When you’ve got four guys in that back end that can play and have ball skills, then you’re going to get interceptions.”

Since his four-interception day against the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 2, Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco has thrown just one pick (Week 4 vs. New England). He has 129 straight pass attempts without an interception, the third-longest streak in team history behind Eric Zeier’s 175.

Accordingly, the Ravens have won five of their past six games and the offense is averaging more than 25 points per game during that stretch.

Flacco wasn’t aware of the Falcons’ interception statistics and said it’s not something that affects the way he approaches the game.

“I’m just going to go in there and continue to try to play consistent football,” Flacco said. “And I think as long as we do that, then we’ll be all right and we won’t have to worry about that.”

Baltimore’s recent win streak has also been aided by its defense’s increased interceptions – in large part thanks to safety Ed Reed’s return.

After notching three interceptions in their first six games, Baltimore has five in the past two. That includes three last week versus the Miami Dolphins, when Reed and cornerbacks Lardarius Webb and Josh Wilson each notched a pick.

When the Ravens win or are even in the turnover battle during a game, they are 4-1 this season and 86-20 in franchise history.

The Falcons and quarterback Matt Ryan have protected the ball fairly well. Ryan is tied for 22nd in the NFL in interceptions with five.

Atlanta has a +7 turnover ratio while the Ravens are +1.

Falcon Jim

November 10th, 2010
3:48 pm

O.K. I’m not taken seriously. Dern. I’m going home…………..and taking my ball.

Sid

November 10th, 2010
3:51 pm

Eclipsed him? Why he was #1 last August 2……………..lol………!!

Actually, JSS there have been numerous negative comments in various blogs on TG as of late, not sure why, can only speculate some are just anti Falcon anything.

JSS

November 10th, 2010
3:53 pm

From Jeff Schultz’s blog:
Gonzalez: “The first one behind him, Mike Ditka (59th overall), won Super Bowls as a player and coach in Dallas and Chicago. That’s what stands out to Gonzalez. “I don’t want to be that guy [who's in the Hall of Fame without a title],” he said.”
That is what “making a place in Canton” means. He knows he’s in the Hall, he wants the legacy. Ray Bourque wanted the legacy too…

Sid

November 10th, 2010
3:55 pm

by Mike Duffy

No matter how stingy the Ravens are against the run Thursday night, don’t expect the Atlanta Falcons to play like the Miami Dolphins and give up on their ground game.

Last weekend, Dolphins running back Ronnie Brown carried the football seven times for a respectable 47 yards in the first half. But after that, he logged two runs for 12 yards in the final two quarters.

Relying on Michael Turner to tote the rock on a regular basis, Atlanta is a team that commits throughout the entire game.

“If you watch their games, you see that they do stick to the run,” Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis said of the Falcons. ”They have a good running back in Turner that really likes to get downhill. He’s a physical back, and he just loves to run between the tackles.”

At 5-foot-10, 247 pounds, Turner is the type of runner who can bowl over would-be tacklers. The Ravens saw his kind with Cleveland’s 250-pound Peyton Hillis, who romped for 144 yards and one touchdown against Baltimore in Week 3.

Additionally, Turner is nicknamed “The Burner” for his ability to speed around the edge, which the Ravens saw in LaDainian Tomlinson’s 62 yards on only 11 rushes in the season opener.

Turner has used both of those traits to hit at least 100 yards in four of his last six contests. He gashed the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for 107 rushing yards and two scores last Sunday and is averaging 86.8 yards per game.

“Michael Turner is a tackle-breaker, [a] north-south, hard-running guy,” said Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh. ”They call him ‘The Burner’ for a reason, too. He’s fast, always has been. [He is] one of the premier backs in the league.”

Despite a long history of excellence as a run defense, Baltimore brings the NFL’s 13th-rated unit to Atlanta on Thursday.

The Ravens are allowing 104.8 rush yards per game, and they don’t want that number to grow at the Georgia Dome.

“They do a great, great job sticking to it,” said Lewis. ”We do a pretty good job of sticking to it as well, trying to stop people from running the ball. So, it should be a good test for both sides.”

JSS

November 10th, 2010
3:57 pm

There are anti-comments because he can no longer clear the middle of the field anymore. I’m not anti Gonzalez for realizing that… He’s also dropped balls “Tony Gonzalez” does not drop. Just like Roddy White is catching balls that he used to drop…

Sid

November 10th, 2010
3:57 pm

Ok, guys, momma says I have to get off the computer now, Go Birds – shred some Ravens tomorrow night

JSS

November 10th, 2010
4:03 pm

Tony Gonzalez has been eclipsed… Gonzalez of 3 seasons ago would command the middle of the field 25-35 yards deep… Sorry, unless a Strong Safety and the deep linebacker are drunk and passed out in the middle of the field; that’s not going to happen…

Sid

November 10th, 2010
4:08 pm

JSS

November 10th, 2010
3:57 pm
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Again, your opinion.