GAME STORY: Buccaneers 16, Falcons 13

Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (11) stiff-arms Buccaneers defensive back Corey Lynch (41) on a fourth quarter reception. AP

Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (11) stiff-arms Buccaneers defensive back Corey Lynch (41) on a fourth quarter reception. AP

TAMPA

– Even with Falcons owner Arthur Blank pacing the sidelines next to the team bench on Sunday at Raymond James Stadium, there would be no miracle finish to pull out another improbable victory.

After defensive tackle Corey Peters inexplicably jumped offsides on a fourth down-and-1, the Buccaneers secured a 16-13 win over the Falcons in the NFC South opener for both teams.

“Stupid,” Peters said. “It was my fault. I take 100 percent of the blame for that. I’ve been warned about that over and over again. Everybody has warned me about that.

“The defensive coordinator, head coach and the middle linebacker; so it was 100 percent my fault. I knew not to do that.”

Defensive end John Abraham, one of the leaders of the defense, called Peters’ play “unacceptable.”

But for all the beating up of himself, Peters was not the only member of the team who had a bad play or a bad game.

There were a slew of penalties, a key dropped pass by All-Pro wide receiver Roddy White on an apparent touchdown, another poor showing by the offensive line, Matt Ryan over threw a wide open Tony Gonzalez in the endzone and there was a key failed fourth-down conversion.

Also, the running game was stopped in its tracks by a defense that was giving up 156 yards per game. The Falcons, and their proud Pro Bowlers Michael Turner and Ovie Mughelli, were held to 30 yards on 15 carries.

The Bucs, who had dropped the last five games to the Falcons, improved to 2-1. Atlanta dipped to 1-2.

“I got excited or whatever,” Peters said. “It was stupid. I won’t say that it cost us the game, but it definitely ended the game.”

Peters, who started 15 games last season as a rookie, was calm after the game. He didn’t dodge any questions.

He kept arriving at the same conclusion.

“It was stupid,” Peters said. “It didn’t give us the opportunity. There is no excuse for it.”

The Falcons had planned to stop the Bucs, and then march down for a field goal to send the game into overtime or a touchdown for the victory.

The Falcons, who won seven games in the fourth quarter or overtime last season, appeared poised to snatch a win away from the Buccaneers just like they did last week against the Philadelphia Eagles with two late 80-yard touchdown drives.

But this time, the Bucs, on the legs of powerful second-year running back LeGarrette Blount, were able to run out the clock with the aid of Peters’ penalty.

Earlier, fueled by Falcons’ turnovers, the Bucs built a 16-3 lead with 6:54 left in the third quarter.

After a Falcons punt, safety William Moore had an interception. The Falcons drove down to the Bucs’ 7, but on a fourth-and 3, Tampa Bay safety Corey Lynch batted down a pass intended for running back Jacquizz Rodgers.

“Jacquizz ran a good route and did what we asked him to do,” Ryan said. “We have to make those plays.”

The defense got another stop and the light finally came on for the offense. Ryan covered 41 yards in two plays, tossing a 10-yard touchdown pass to Gonzalez to make it 16-10.

After another stop from the defense, the offense appeared set to score, but had to settle for a field goal after White dropped a pass in the flat. He took his eyes off the ball as he was turning upfield into a clear path to the endzone.

“It’s difficult to continue to come back week after week,” Ryan said. “Today, I certainly thought that after we got that first [touchdown], we were going to move the ball down again. We moved it pretty effectively, but we just weren’t able to punch it in.”

Ryan finished with 330 yards passing as he completed 26 of 47 passes. White had nine catches for 140 yards and rookie Julio Jones had six catches for 115 yards.

“At the end of the day, we just dug ourselves too big of a hole,” Falcons coach Mike Smith said.

The Falcons have trailed by 10 points in each of their games this season.

“It’s not just one person,” Smith said. “Not just in one phase. It’s across the board. I’ll take full responsibility for that. . .We’ve got a lot of areas to address.”

The Falcons travel to play Seattle next week before hosting Green Bay at the Georgia Dome on Oct. 9 in a rematch of the divisionsal playoff game.

137 comments Add your comment

Michael M.

September 26th, 2011
12:08 am

First !
Maybe Mr. Blank needs to Bounce the Checks !

gabugman

September 26th, 2011
12:12 am

OK,

Here are my personal observations of the ATL Falcons after three games.

Mayhap Mike Smith ain’t as slick as we all thought. The kool aid of three winning seasons was tasty and new, but I’ve come to expect more from this team in those three years (I know, a great problem to have) than what has come to be. There are a lot of weapons on this team, both defensive and offensive. It seems to me that the Falcons should not have to struggle to win games at the rate they have over the last three seasons. There is no excuse for putting up 3 points in 3 quarters of a game, ever. Here we are, the Mark Richt of pro football (for those of you taking notes, that’s not coaching up your talent).

When will this team actually dominate a game and make it something less than a nail biter? I can only recall one such game in three years, against San Fran in 2008. This team has way too many skilled players to continue to struggle for wins. This brings me to…

BVGorder’s bend but don’t break defense was fine at UGA but is a failure in the NFL. Cover two is one of many packages you can use but zone all the time? Rarely do I see anything but blast over in the secondary and that means pick us apart for 10 yards or less per first down until the other team reaches the red zone. Then it’s bow up or break and we all know what happens at that point (68% scoring rate for the opponents).

The offensive line is nothing more than a glorified dance troupe. They couldn’t keep Ben from hi fiving Jerry even if they had Randy White running interference. Matt Ryan will not last the season at this rate and I honestly have no idea why they have become such a sieve. Two seconds of protection time will not give you the opportunity to be “explosive” no matter how good your receivers are. The protection last year was not great but this year it has become non existent. Four man rushes are getting to Ryan.

What’s with all the fundamental mistakes? I get that the season was cut short with the strike but it “seems” to me that ATL is making stoopid, repetitive, correctible errors (disclaimer: I’m referring to the elite teams in the league, they don’t make these gaffs). Brainless penalties, not wrapping up on tackles. Either we play at the level of the top ten, or we bolo with the bottom twenty-two. To me, Mike Smith is starting to look more and more like Jim Mora, Jr.

Mike Mularkey needs to go. His “feel” for the pre-game play list is completely ineffective. The only time this team is consistent on offense is in the no huddle when Mularkey is not part of the equation (yes I know he is, he scripts the plays, but Ryan recognizes the coverages and adapts). Where are the adaptions? I hear and understand the peers that glorify this guy but I’m of the opinion they can have him, he’s predictable and stale. Give me a Mike Martz anytime over Mularkey.

Who the hell let Michael Koenen go? WHO THE HELL HIRED BOSHER? They should be fired for the simple fact of not being able to judge talent. If that’s Mike Smith then he’s an idiot and shouldn’t be a “head coach”.

The Falcons have come a long way since 2008 but still have a ways to go. They have the potential to become one of the consistently elite teams in the NFL but may also be the biggest posers in the NFL. Without a solid assistant coaching staff, this franchise will continue to struggle with winning as well as losing.

CGD..

September 26th, 2011
12:39 am

Cant believe Ryan threw for 330 but the 2 fumbles were costly!

I would use my 1st and 2nd round picks on 5 potential All-pro offensive linemen then I would go 19-0!!!!

Gotta block 1st before you run your plays on offensive. What so hard for Gm’s to understand? I can find a very good 3rd or 4th round receiver but linemen are another story they are a rare breed…Talking about All-Pro linemen that is.. That’s were I would spend the money and high draft picks….

PMC

September 26th, 2011
12:40 am

This franchise will never have a good team until the GM, whomever that may be takes the line of scrimmage seriously.

We do not. Period. This line is abysmal. Outside of a few players here and there the Offensive line has been abysmal for 45 years.

Sam Baker is the best we could do really?????

PMC

September 26th, 2011
12:41 am

We rolled into the season thinking we were going to compete with THIS offensive line?

Defensive Tackles strolled through the middle of the line today like it didn’t exist.

Einstein

September 26th, 2011
12:41 am

We need to draft some linemen next draft. Some BIG ones. Not these barely 300 ones, I mean BIGGGG. Like 330+. Look at the Saints’ interior O-line. Evans and Nicks are both pushing 340, and their both All-Pros. They’re great.

Einstein

September 26th, 2011
12:42 am

We need some meaty men up front.

Einstein

September 26th, 2011
12:43 am

330+ on everybody. That’s what we need. Look at the Aint’s interior of their line. Both Evans and Nicks are pushing 340 and their both All-Pro guards.

Einstein

September 26th, 2011
12:45 am

Anybody think we miss Grady Jackson? We need a behemoth up front in the D-line to draw double teams. These little quick guys are nice, but having someone that is 350 can really eat up a lot of space.

PMC

September 26th, 2011
12:56 am

no, right now we desperately miss Babs.

Too bad they can’t go redo about 80% of our last 3 drafts.

PMC

September 26th, 2011
12:57 am

Would love to have a Casey Hampton type on the team. I like the tackles ok still, it’s the END’S I need more from. The ends and the outside linebackers who can’t get to the edge to defend 5 yard outs.

The linebackers who don’t stay home on screens.

CGD..

September 26th, 2011
12:57 am

Yes up the middle a Grady type dude is needed…Very badly on D…

Giving up all those picks for JJ is going to haunt this franchise for years…Not knockin JJ but receiving is not the problem its the line Sir Blank!!!!

CGD..

September 26th, 2011
12:59 am

We need a line backer like the HAMMER!

Reggie

September 26th, 2011
1:22 am

When “ice” threw that deep ball to Julio the announcers compared it to a punt saying Julio should have called for a fair catch….classic. He’s not ice, elite, super smart our any
of the other things the local media and residents of Forsyth county thinks he is….he is Matt Ryan overrated and under talented. But hey he speaks well….

BipolarFalcon

September 26th, 2011
1:24 am

Don’t worry people we lost, December is right around the corner and they are coming to our house, we will be ready for them. that is right i am talking about The Tampa BuGGaneers.

BipolarFalcon

September 26th, 2011
1:30 am

Oh man Yall forgot about that Sam Baker, Tampa rookie DE just made him look bad.

Home School Drop Out

September 26th, 2011
1:31 am

Both Rich McKay and Dimitrioff are counting NICKELS AND DIMES.
They showed Harvey Dahl that they would not PAY HIM the amount he asked for.
Put John Parker Wilson on the PRACTICE SQUAD.
NICKELS AND DIMES, NICKELS AND DIMES, NICKELS AND DIMES,

GHunt

September 26th, 2011
2:06 am

One way to improve the O-line would be to switch positions between Sam Baker and Garrett Reynold. Reynolds is a natural left tackle playing right guard. and short arms Baker is mean enough to be a great guard.

[...] GAME STORY: Buccaneers 16, Falcons 13 But for all the beating up of himself, Peters was not the only member of the team who had a bad play or a bad game. There were a slew of penalties, a key dropped pass by All-Pro wide receiver Roddy White on an apparent touchdown, another poor showing … Read more on Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) [...]

dukester

September 26th, 2011
6:25 am

Nah dont want to hear it. This is the same line he went 13-3 with. Minus Dahl. It is what it is dont start making excuses. This is a team game if the line aint blocking he should run and extend the play. The real issue is the league has caught up with the golden boy. They rush him up the middle because they know he will not run he will just try to spin out the pocket. They are not worrying about he deep ball. As the announcer said “Julio Jones had to call a fair catch”. LOL Julio was wide open and Tampa knew intentionally left him open because they knew he couldnt overthrow him and lead him in the endzone. LOL

just sayin'

September 26th, 2011
6:43 am

i almost fell out of my chair when the announcers said juliet should have called for a fair catch on the javelin toss from melt..i think it brought more rain…and billick, his praise of the fal cants was sickening…he ought to say a disclaimer before the atl games he does…oh, by the way, i’m related to the coach..melt looked very confused in the first half.

G. Gallman

September 26th, 2011
6:53 am

Definitely not a good showing…As its been stated in several comments, we must have a line that blocks…We need a New England line that allows our QB to use the weapons that we have or that can make a hole for our backs to run thru. If we don’t do something soon, as much as I LOVE MY FALCONS, Ryan will get hurt…GO FALCONS!!!

Michael M.

September 26th, 2011
7:39 am

Its the same song out of Coach Smith, only a different key ! I look for another loss next week against Seattle and then a lop-sided Home Loss against The Pac.
I am starting to be as bad as the Trolls !
I say Stop paying da Bums and ship em outta here ! This is just not acceptable !

Oh yeah, the stats look good on different individuals after this Tampa Loss but it is what it is ! ! !
Just another loss and one step closer to the foot in the grave with no chance of coming back to make a run at anything except the back door !

They lose 3 or 4 more games then a run to the playoffs is outta reach too ! A 10-6 might slip em in there as wildcard but I doubt it. I think my wife said it best because a female can and does see things different than us men do.

She said, well, they going to get paid regardless of whether they win another game or not and as long as they know that, its just like Joe Blow going to work everyday

AtlantaDude

September 26th, 2011
7:49 am

Turners “big game” in Philly was a mirage. A bunch of no gains and then breaks a 60-yarder that makes his totals look good. Nobody touched him on that long play.

So we go into this game with a false sense of confidence about the running game and that leaves us with a bunch of 2nd and long, 3rd and long situations.

We need a back that gets to the line much more quickly.

jack sprat

September 26th, 2011
7:51 am

jack sprat

September 26th, 2011
7:52 am

Lynch got the arm in the face but he brought Jones right down…..

MT Seats

September 26th, 2011
7:54 am

More Koolaid, anyone ?

Season Ticker Holder

September 26th, 2011
8:06 am

Football games are won and lose in the trenches. The Falcons must address the poor play of the offensive line. The lack of blocking up front has shut down the passing game and the falcons are struggling with the running game.

It appears the Falcons are being out coached. Tampa played the majority of the game with 7 plus men in the box. They effectively stopped the run. The Falcon coaching staff did not make any adjustment to counter Tampa.

At this point, MM and BVG need to be fired!

Fal Can

September 26th, 2011
8:10 am

The Falcons Are, Who We Thought They Were! This team has been Overhyped all offseason. No depth at any position, mediocre O & D lines. Matty is good in the No Huddle, but he is still primarily a “HAM AND EGG QUARTERBACK”. Short passes, dink & dunk! Dimitroff should have restructured some contracts and Re-signed Harvey Dahl, also we should have signed Shaun Rogers, a 350 lb interior lineman who was willing to “Work for Food”. Looking at a 9-7 season, Falcon Fans, we are lucky to be 1-2 right now……

Season Ticker Holder

September 26th, 2011
8:12 am

Tampa gave the Falcons a taste of their own medicine. At the start of the third quarter, Tampa marched the ball down the field taking over 8 minutes off the clock and wear down the Falcons defense.

Michael M.

September 26th, 2011
8:13 am

I may have to sign up with the ‘ who Dat’ Nation if this Falcons team keeps doing this………………………………….omg, did I say that ?

[...] here to see the original: GAME STORY: Buccaneers 16, Falcons 13 | Atlanta Falcons Categories: Uncategorized Click here to cancel reply. Name [...]

Savage 57

September 26th, 2011
8:30 am

Matt Ryan’s coronation came too early, with all the “Matty Ice” talk after the Falcons pulled out some wins in relatively meaningless games. When the pressure is on, and the stakes are highest what you are seeing Falcons faithful is the true incarnation of Matt Ryan and his nickname needs to be changed to “Matty Slush” – ice that melts under heat and pressure.

dukester

September 26th, 2011
8:34 am

Im not sure why falcon fans are so hard on Mike Smith he has this team ready to play every week we are who we are. If we dont make enough plays thats not his fault. To me he is the best coach we ever had!! Its funny the back to back winning season award goes to Matt Ryan but it should go to Mike Smith. Its his defense that has a the longest turnover streak in the league. You guys are so Matt Ryan start struck you dont know right from left. Yea if it wasnt for the defense we would be 0-3. Call a spade a spade!!! Go Mike Smith your doing great with what you have sir.
The defense got the blame against GreenBay last year in the playoffs. But they never blame the offense for turning the ball over on our side of the field then you want them to play lights out like they are the Steelers or something please. The bailed Matty Lice out yesterday on that interception in the end zone. If Tampa would have went 10 points they would have blew us out.

Khanboy

September 26th, 2011
8:43 am

Peters made a huge mistake, one that should cost him a job, but this team can’t afford to lose him. (Remember Philly 08, the punt returner supposedly muffed the punt, but didn’t. Falcons let him go the week after.)

SeenThisB4

September 26th, 2011
8:56 am

I saw some of the hits that Ryan took, and maaaaaannnnnn! Ooh, some of those were awesome hits, awesome hits. At that rate, Ryan will end up on IR before the S a i n t s ever get a shot at him.

CGD..

September 26th, 2011
9:01 am

A basic 4 man rush Coach Clean Shot???????????

Are you kidding me? You got 5 on the line? (OL)

CGD..

September 26th, 2011
9:03 am

JJ had to slow down almost stop on a dime to catch that bomb from Patty..

That would have been a touchdown from former UGA quarterback: Matt Stafford,the dude with the GOLDEN ARM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mako

September 26th, 2011
9:23 am

CGD.. give a rest will ya…Stafford is 1 hit away from end of career…heck he was that way at UGA

Michael M.

September 26th, 2011
9:43 am

The Lions are bigger bunch of Bums than Atlanta are, they have not played nobody yet
Stick The Pac or The Patriots at em and they will fold up like a roly poly bug…lmao
Stafford must be Dreaming hes playing at Georgia again
he gets a few clean shots like our Coach clean shot teaches, he will be like the Phillies QB

Michael M.

September 26th, 2011
9:45 am

Yeahhhh… a few nice clean shots and it will be back to losersville reality for Stafford and the Lions

Michael M.

September 26th, 2011
9:50 am

Lions sorriest Team in Football past few years and they 3- 0, GIVE ME A BREAK, either the NFL games are fixed or its preplanned whos gonna win week to week to keep it going as a Drama or for ratings or for someones fat Pocketbook
Theres things going on we as fans dont know…there has to be

Season Ticker Holder

September 26th, 2011
9:51 am

CGD.. is right. JJ had to stop and wait on the bomb from Matt Ryan. That play would have been a TD if Matt had a stronger arm.

Don't feed Aints trolls (It isn't 2009 anymore)

September 26th, 2011
9:52 am

Stafford would be in the hospital behind this Oline.

CGD..

September 26th, 2011
9:53 am

Michael M.

September 26th, 2011
9:57 am

Hell, anybody be in the hospital or the graveyard standing in back of the Falcons Offensive Line !
LMAO

Michael M.

September 26th, 2011
10:01 am

They need to put Van Gordypie and some of those other coaches and mularkey full of it in there and play OL and let Coach clean shot QB and call his own plays…….ha! ha! ha ! ha ! and then maybe they can figure out what to do to fix it
I like to fell out the chair brainstorming this one ! lmao

just sayin'

September 26th, 2011
10:01 am

hey, Don’t….looks like it’s not 2010 anymore either…

fan

September 26th, 2011
10:02 am

Why did we change our line and kicker? We were fine. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Oh nooo… we must mess with it! The result is horrendous. Kicker needs to go. Get rookies off the line. Let Ryan make the play calls. He does it the best.

Michael M.

September 26th, 2011
10:02 am

Im too tore up to type anymore
lmao crackin up out here