Falcons get big stops to beat Vikings 24-14

The Atlanta Falcons cheerleaders kick up their heels performing during a time out in 1st half action against the Vikings. Curtis Compton / ccompton@ajc.com

The Atlanta Falcons cheerleaders kick up their heels performing during a time out in 1st half action against the Vikings. Curtis Compton / ccompton@ajc.com

For the second consecutive outing, the Falcons built a nice lead only to nearly let it slip away. Instead of routing the Minnesota Vikings, they settled for a 24-14 victory Sunday at the Georgia Dome.

Cornerback Christopher Owens helped save the game with a tackle on Minnesota’s Percy Harvin, who raced 104 yards on a kickoff return before he was pulled down on the Falcons 3 with 6:28 to play. The Vikings came away with no points.

“The most pivotal play in the ballgame, in my opinion,” Falcons coach Mike Smith said.

Falcons linebacker Sean Weatherspoon moments later had one just as crucial with a stop on a fourth-and-goal play from the 1.

After catching Harvin, Owens sacked Christian Ponder for a 2-yard loss. On second and third downs, the Vikings tried to plow Harvin up the middle; he gained 3 and 1 yards, settingup the fourth-and-goal play

Falcons wide receiver Harry Douglas high-steps into the end zone for a 7-0 lead over the Vikings on a 1st quarter pass from Matt Ryan. Curtis Compton / ccompton@ajc.com

Falcons wide receiver Harry Douglas high-steps into the end zone for a 7-0 lead over the Vikings on a 1st quarter pass from Matt Ryan. Curtis Compton / ccompton@ajc.com

 from the 1.

The Vikings might have tipped their hand when running back Toby Gerhart, filling in for the injured Adrian Peterson, was reinserted into the game. An Atlanta linebacker was waiting for him.

“I just shot off the edge and tried to make a play,” Weatherspoon said.

In beating the Vikings (2-9), the Falcons (7-4) won for the fifth time in six games.

The previous week against Tennessee, the Falcons built a 23-3 lead before giving up two late touchdowns and holding on for a 23-17 win. Against the Vikings, the Falcons stormed out to a 17-0 lead.

The Falcons, of course, would prefer to put teams away when they get them reeling.

”We have to work on that,” Weatherspoon said. “It’s tough on Sundays. There are a lot of great players that play across the league. It doesn’t matter who you are playing, but when you get up you definitely want to keep your foot on their throats.”

Behind the hot passing of quarterback Matt Ryan, the Falcons built that 17-0 lead by halftime. In the half, Ryan completed 14 of 18 passes for 151 yards and 2 touchdowns to help the Falcons take control.

Douglas, left, celebrates his touchdown reception with Julio Jones. Curtis Compton / ccompton@ajc.com

Douglas, left, celebrates his touchdown reception with Julio Jones. Curtis Compton / ccompton@ajc.com

The Atlanta offense relied heavily on the running of Michael Turner and Jason Snelling to march deep into Minnesota territory for its first touchdown. After reaching the 18-yard line, right guard Joe Hawley was called for holding, but the Falcons overcame it.

On second-and-19 from the 27, Harry Douglas caught a pass over the middle and ran through missed tackles by E.J. Henderson and Asher Allen on his way to the end zone.

In the second quarter, Ryan found Roddy White in the back of the end zone with a 6-yard touchdown pass.

Falcons kicker Matt Bryant added a 37-yard field goal to make it 17-0.

In the third quarter, Minnesota finally started to move the ball. Rookie quarterback Christian Ponder converted on 3 of 3 third-down situations during an 80-yard drive capped by a 1-yard touchdown run by Gerhart.

The Vikings kept a vital fourth-quarter drive alive with two bizarre plays. A rolling punt hit Falcons cornerback Dominique Franks and the Vikings recovered.

The Falcons appeared to have Minnesota stopped again, but Ponder tossed a fourth-down, 39-yard touchdown pass to Harvin to pull the Vikings within 17-14.

After an exchange of punts, the Falcons came up with a nine-play, 73-yard drive; Ryan tossed his third touchdown pass, a 3-yarder, to tight end Michael Palmer for a cushion and to close out the scoring.

“We knew offensively that it was important for us to execute on that drive,” said Ryan, who had his highest passer rating of the season at 128. 2. “I thought we converted on some third downs, which was huge. We were effective throwing the football. We responded the way we needed to in order to win the football game. We did a great job that drive.”

The Vikings still made things interesting. Harvin caught the ensuing kickoff 7 yards deep in the end zone and nearly went the distance, coming up 3 yards short because of Owens.

“I just didn’t give up on the play,” Owens said. “There was no special magic to it. That guy is lightning fast. I was fortunate enough to get him.”

–D. Orlando Ledbetter, The Atlanta Falcons beat blog

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55 comments Add your comment

The Falcon Jedi

November 27th, 2011
8:09 pm

FFFIRST!!!!!!

UGABugKiller

November 27th, 2011
8:13 pm

Seriously, DOL, WHY are you refusing to write about WHY the Falcons had success on offense in the first half and WHY they didn’t for most of the second half.

Come on man, this is getting old. It’s getting old from the media here in the ATL and it’s getting old from Mike Smith, who REFUSES to do what is necessary to keep on scoring points, to keep his offense moving, to keep the Falcons WINNING.

The Falcons’ offense looked great in the first half because MATT RYAN and NOT Mike Mularkey, was calling the plays from the no-huddle, directing the offense with originality, with unpredictability, with balance, and with explosive plays.

After half time, Mike Smith gave the play-calling reins back to Mike Mularkey for the first time in pretty much 6 quarters and WHAT happened?

The offense did NOTHING. They were predictable. They were unoriginal. They had no balance. They had NO explosiveness.

They were the OPPOSITE of what they were when Ryan was calling the plays.

DOL, I know you have to only right in facts and you don’t have the luxury of writing conjecture and opinion like Mark and Jeff.

BUT COME ON MAN! THESE ARE FACTS!!!

You CANNOT keep denying or ignoring the FACT that the offense is everything it SHOULD be with this talent when MATT RYAN is running it much like Peyton Manning runs his offense.

It’s a fact. You can write about it.

The Falcons score more points with Ryan calling plays. The Falcons have better yards-per-play and yards-after-catch with Ryan calling plays. The Falcons have less sacks with Ryan calling plays. The Falcons have better offensive balance with Ryan calling plays. The Falcons have more 3rd down conversions with Ryan calling plays. The Falcons have more 20-plus yard plays with Ryan calling plays. Turner has a better yards-per-carry average with Ryan calling plays.

THESE ARE ALL FACTS. They’re verifiable.

WHY are so many invested in this team, both in the media and within the coaching staff and the front office willfully ignoring these FACTS???

WHY???

KQuark

November 27th, 2011
8:15 pm

Say what you want but it’s tough to get motivated for these types of games. The important thing is Atlanta was in control the whole game and gave up less than 250 yards total offense.

To me Atlanta has ironed out a bunch of things, save for finishing the opponents QB and the drops have to stop. Ryan probably played his most efficient game all year and made just one bad throw all day.

The Falcon Jedi

November 27th, 2011
8:15 pm

Longest Non-Scoring Play in NFL History – Percy Harvin’s 101 yard return

Sick & Tired Of Being Sick & Tired

November 27th, 2011
8:26 pm

I totally agree with UGABugKiller’s comments. For anyone watching the Falcons offense, it is real obvious that the offense functions better with Ryan calling the plays. Please keep Mularkey in the box upstairs watching and not calling plays.

I keep hoping that someone in the media with ask Mike Smith why his CBs never bump the other team’s WRs coming off the line of scrimmage to disrupt the route instead of just letting them consistently run their pass patterns? Things that make you go “HUH???” but no one will ask the tough questions at the end of the games. It’s as if they are afraid that they will be banned from the locker room????? Is that it?????

poppa falcon

November 27th, 2011
9:14 pm

UGA BugKiller is RIGHT! Right before the start of the 2nd half, Brian Billick ( COCH SMITH’S VERY ON BROTHER-IN-LAW) spoke on how Smitty likes to runa ‘CONSERVATIVE’ offense when he has a lead. THIS TYPE of 2nd half conservatism is gonna bite us in the -ss; as it’s ALREADY done against the Packers, Saints, and ALMOST against the Eagles this season. Why did we abandon the no-huddle in the 2nd half UNTIL mid 4th qtr?? ( in which we used the Ryan led offense to secure another td to put the game outta reach) I LOVE Coach Smith, but he BETTER LEARN to develop a KILLER INSTINCT if we are to make ANY NOISE in the playoffs. A win is a win, but we played NOT TO LOSE today and damn near lost.

poppa falcon

November 27th, 2011
9:16 pm

……(sorry for all the misspelled words in the previous post……kinda heated right now) lol…

todd

November 27th, 2011
9:19 pm

i keep seeing people comment on Ryan vs Malarkey calling the plays and, to me, it appears that the offense is better with Ryan calling them, but does anyone have any PROOF of this? Please quote some numbers or stop saying this is a fact.

Sean

November 27th, 2011
9:51 pm

I dont think DOL is refusing to write about anything, he is just giving a general synopsis of the game and after game comments from players…nothing wrong with that. But I do agree that we play way too conservative with a lead. Keep the defense guessing and on their heels by going in and out of the no-huddle attack…dont wait to change it up when the opposing team throws points up on the board. By then, the lead (and game) are potentially being thwarted away. If it’s something that the common fan with general football knowledge can see, then you would think they would be able to see it also. If anything, run the ball more…but dont abandon the no-huddle attack. It’s a baaad idea!

hiramsaint

November 27th, 2011
10:36 pm

and still in 2nd place-all is well!

Michael M.

November 27th, 2011
10:37 pm

Was Jones in the Game today ? oh yeahhh, he was that guy that dropped that beautiful deep pass that hit him in the breadbasket when he was falling down.

No wonder he wasn’t in these stats;

Receiving REC YDS TD LG
R. White 10 120 1 26
T. Gonzalez 9 69 0 18
H. Douglas 2 45 1 27T
J. Rodgers 2 12 0 9
M. Palmer 2 8 1 5
J. Snelling 1 4 0 4
M. Turner 1 4 0 4

Michael M.

November 27th, 2011
10:38 pm

just keep on singing that tune up there Hiramsaint

CDG..

November 27th, 2011
11:26 pm

Nice Leg shot D-Led!!!!! lol Especially girl # 3 from the left! He he….

Ueeediot

November 28th, 2011
12:00 am

Whats that? 7-4?

Hate on….

see you next week.

2 good dogs

November 28th, 2011
12:17 am

4th and 13!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

BooBoo

November 28th, 2011
12:26 am

That was like the Seattle game (home version).

DR. FALCON

November 28th, 2011
12:50 am

WE WILL RUN THE TABLE, AND WIN THE SOUTH! MATT RYAN WILL LEAD US IF MULARKEY LETS HIM RUN THE NO-HUDDLE! LET GO OF THE REINS, MULARKEY! YOU HAVE A QB!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Michael M.

November 28th, 2011
7:33 am

Be nice if the Giants can beat the Saints tonight…………would really make things interesting huh?

Picture above showing the Falcon ladies giving the high five for the Falcons on another huge Win Sunday in the Dome !

elephanthead

November 28th, 2011
7:52 am

It was good to come away with a win, but I would like to make one point that has been bothering me all year. The Falcons defense has been improving week by week – playing tough run D and getting to the ball fast. They have the personnel, but the guy calling the shots is killing me. I have never been a fan of the idea of dropping 8 and making the QB find a receiver bacause it is a guaranteed loser. That is called playing not to lose rather than playing to win. That 4th down TD was an embarassment. You do the predicatable BVG thing – only rush 3 and drop everyone back. Was anyone really surprised that Ponder found an open target? Didn’t think so. The fact that is was a TD rather than just a first down added insult to injury. If I was Blank I would have Dimitroff looking for a new DC this week, based on nothing more than that exhibition of poor judgement. Thats really what you pay the coaches for – judgement on who to play, where to play them and what the scheme and call should be. Maybe Sparano will be available after the Dolphins can him.

LarryDalton

November 28th, 2011
7:56 am

Bottom line is that the Falcons organization says, “a win is a win”, but going “conservative” after getting a lead in the NFL is not “prudent”, but just plain suicidal. Falcons’ fans see this, week after week. We see why this is a “talented, yet under-achieving” offense… we are BEGGING Mike Smith to get his head out of the sand and let Ryan bring us ELITE status in this league, by calling his own plays throughout every game. Mularkey has held us back with stale, unimaginative and predictable play-calling. Step out of your own “formula”, Mike, and give us a champion. PLEASE.

clark kent

November 28th, 2011
8:51 am

It’ll be great when this team finally plays a full 60 minutes.

St Simons - we're on Island time

November 28th, 2011
9:05 am

The only thing Chris Owens saved was himself. Harvin broke containment through Owens’ gap. How many ways can you get burned in the NFL? Owens is in uncharted waters.

JayCool 4Da Birds

November 28th, 2011
9:08 am

I just hope Grimes is going to be ok. Our secondary has always been the weak link and we can’t afford to take a blow at CB heading into the play-offs. I’m glad Matt Ryan has started to get those long balls under control, now if we can just get the recievers to catch them.

JayCool 4Da Birds

November 28th, 2011
9:09 am

And maybe just a slight maybe it’s time to get L. Sidbury a little more involved on the D-Line.

CDG..

November 28th, 2011
9:21 am

Yea they really looked primed to beat the contenders?

falconfansinceprime

November 28th, 2011
9:22 am

Hey dled why are the falcons working out dbs could it possibly be that they are not sure that Chris Owens can hold up

CDG..

November 28th, 2011
9:36 am

Bobby Cox Jr………………..

CDG..

November 28th, 2011
9:40 am

Can you believe Norv Turner has lost six consecutive games in a row with a playoff talented team?

What a buster! This guy cant win anywhere he coaches..He should be coaching pee-wee football! lol

mountain_jim

November 28th, 2011
10:07 am

Now that we know that Mike Smith decides when to run no-huddle and when to let Mularkey call the plays, it’s all on Smith.
Some one needs to get him on record as to why he keeps trying to throw leads away in the 3rd quarter. Look at stats for all games this season, we are outscored in the 3rd by many points.

This is on Smith. DLed will not address this, but Jeff already has. Mark was supporting going conservative with the lead in the in-game blog after the first 2 to uncreative and ineffective dive plays up the middle to start the 3rd, where-as I told him in the blog this was going to come back and bite us as it has all season long.

Falcons came a few plays from losing that game, and it would have been Smith’s fault for going so conservative and taking the play-calling out of Ryan’s hands. Again!

SirReal

November 28th, 2011
10:23 am

I’m sick of the tale of two halfs. We always come out pretty good in the first half and then sit in the 2nd. It wasnt until they ALMOST came back to win that the falcons offense played with a sense of urgency. They need to have that all game and they dont because of the SOFT, scared to lose a lead mentality of the HEAD coach. I like Smith but Im sick of playing teams not to dominate them but rather to ease into a win. Anyone else notice that when we’re up by 2 scores that the D starts playing what I cal ‘We won already” defense as if the game is already over. Too much to fix and not enough time…I hope they have a good plan for teh Texans though. Yeah they have QB issues….but I’ve seen Qbs this season who werent that great just simply light the Falcons up. Hope to have Grimes back. Winning is always good but this always almost losing it deal is old as dirt. It all goes back to COACHING and a team taking on the personality of its coach. Thats evidence even in pop warner. Teams take on the personality of their head coach. Period.

PaulWarfield

November 28th, 2011
10:30 am

I HOPE THE FALCONS ARE PAYING ATTENTION TO WHAT THEY ARE BUILDING ON THE OFFENSIVE SIDE OF THE FOOTBALL. RODDY WHITE IS SNAPPING OUT OF HIS SLUMP OF DROPPING PASSES AND IS STARTING TO LOOK LIKE THE 3-TIME ALL-PRO THAT HE IS. HARRY DOUGLAS IS PLAYING OUT OF HIS MIND RIGHT NOW AND IS LOOKING LIKE AN ALL-PRO FROM WHAT I CAN SEE. YOU ADD TONY GONZALES (ARGUABLY THE GREATEST TIGHT-END OF ALL TIMES) ALONG WITH REPEATED STUNNING PERFORMANCES FROM ROOKIE WR JULIO JONES AND YOU HAVE THE MAKINGS OF A WELL-OILED MACHINE CAPABLE OF HOISTING THE SUPERBOWL CROWN (VINCE LOMBARDY TROPHY). Also when you add Michael (the burner) Turner to the mix who is UNSTOPPABLE and an absolute load to bring down when he is on, along with snelling and kickoff and punt return sensation Eric Weems, you are putting together an explosive juggernaut capable of demolishing and cutting down any team that gets in its path. THE FALCONS ARE INCREASING THE NUMBER OF EXPLOSIVE PLAYS AND ARE STARTING TO LOOK LIKE AN ELITE FOOTBALL TEAM. If they could end their lapses and boredom when they build big leads and concentrate for four quarters, this team is capable of quickly becoming an ELITE TEAM in just a matter of weeks before the playoffs begin. Look out NFL, here come the Atlanta Falcons. Impressive win against the Vikings!

CGD..

November 28th, 2011
10:43 am

Yea explosive! SB contenders? LMBO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

They beat teams with a combined winning % of less than .350… Awesome dude!

2-5 last 7 games against the winners and they’re now considered contenders? Wow!

Now thats a homer!( warfail)^^^^^^^^^^^ Impressive……..lol

SirReal

November 28th, 2011
11:10 am

@CGD Norv’s a heck of an O-Coord…..just dont know if he has what it takes the run the whole ship.lol lol

PaulWarfield

November 28th, 2011
11:12 am

CGD.. you are way off and dont see the metamorphasis taking place by the Falcons. Up until and including the Green Bay game, the Falcons BRAGGED about their ability to make explosive plays this season but have been short or non-existent on being able to deliver them. After the Green Bay game when the Falcons record was 2-3, they went back to the drawing board and came up with SPECTACULAR RESULTS. The Falcons are 5-1 in their last six games (no small feat in the nFL) and have had a multitude of EXPLOSIVE PLAYS since then. The Falcons red-zone efficiency is AWESOME and their ability to stop the run is strong. In the New Orleans game, although the Falcons played aweful, had a bunch of penalties and did not particular play a great game:WHEN THE CHIPS WERE DOWN AND THE FALCONS WERE BEHIND BY 10 POINTS AGAINST NEW ORLEANS with only 4 1/2 minutes to play: the Falcons shut down the Saints, scored 10 points and FORCED OVERTIME. Then the Falcons had two chances to win the game in OT but failed to do it. Had the Falcons beat the Saints in that one game, their whole season would have turned. The Falcons would have been in first place and the saints would have been in second in their division. The media would have respected the Falcons more, but I see the Falcons emerging as the SUPERPOWER OF THE NFL, along with New Orleans, Green Bay and New England. The Falcons are on the verge of elite status if they run the table on their remaining opponents and beat out N.O. for the division crown. Oh, by the way, I think when you look at this years falcon team, you are looking at this years upcoming superbowl champion team.

SirReal

November 28th, 2011
11:15 am

@Paul Warfield….ummm I hear you on some things but as far as red zone efficiency, lets throw the numbers out the window. They cant score TDs. Look at some old articles from about a month ago and you’ll see that even Smitty said we have to score more TDs. FGs are not gonna win it and only pad those red zone stats…..i agree about the run though. Nobody’s gettin a 100 yards on these birds.

CGD..

November 28th, 2011
11:16 am

Norv must have pictures? This guy keeps getting jobs that he constantly fails at…Amazing that club he belongs too? lol

CGD..

November 28th, 2011
11:31 am

@WarField, prediction: This team wont sniff a championship anytime soon. Not with this staff or QB..

Ryan aint the one Grasshopper.. His weakness are MAGNIFIED against the contenders and he will melt.. Accuracy is his major weakness and shows up against the best…..You’ve seen it be4…And will see it again. Just sit tight..6 more weeks ta go dude….

Coach Smith is Bobby Cox Jr.. Finds a way to screw it up against the contenders and gets crushed in the playoffs time and again….Sorry big guy this metamorphosis will “crash and burn” on the National stage right on cue….

CGD..

November 28th, 2011
11:41 am

Ya see the well coach teams know that if they can contain that pro-bowler Turner they have at least an 85% chance of beating the Falcons.. Turner is the Key not Ryan on offense..He makes Ryan shine not the other way around.. Stop Turner, stop the Falcons.. (See GreenBay games)..

Matter of fact you’ll see it again come playoffs.. The game film is out out there for the contenders to analyze then go about their way dismantling the dirty birds…Will not be a surprise….

Sydclark

November 28th, 2011
12:18 pm

Concur with Mt.Jim and the others that 3rd quarter offense is a serious concern. Going conservative helps the opponents’ defense as they only have to play for the run, and this allows them to get back in the game. Truly awesome teams break their opponents spirit sometime in the second half…witness last night’s Eagles vs. Patriots…The Pats ended any thoughts of comeback that the Eagles might have entertained. It was over in the 3rd quarter.

As a long time Falcons’ fan the “conservative” second half calling triggers a nightmare memory of a playoff game against Dallas as the lgame leading Falcons’ went to a conservative running game and were beaten in the 4th quarter…if only they had play actioned and thrown long to a Wallace Francis or Alfred Jenkins…oh well…when will they ever learn?

And btw, Paul W. the reason the Falcons didn’t beat the Saints was a “not ready for primetime” coaching decision…so now it’s the wildcard hunt. Let’s hope the Birds can win out.

Homer

November 28th, 2011
12:24 pm

It doesnt matter. This lackluster team, the atlanta falcons, will find a way to screw things up. Bask in your limelight for now you losers as another loss is yet but one game away.

PaulWarfield

November 28th, 2011
2:01 pm

Before this article and blog gets closed out, I want to explain WHY I think the Falcons will be a SUPERPOWER and a genuine superbowl threat in the NFL this season, along with the Saints, Packers and Patriots. Heres why. OK. Turner is one of the keys for the Falcons and probably the main key. But I also think that Roddy White is also a key. The last two weeks White has been playing great football and the Falcons looked a little stronger, with all the other weapons they have.Harry Douglas is PLAYING OUT OF HIS MIND right now, and if you have WHITE, DOUGLAS, TURNER, SNELLING, GONZALES, WEEMS, RYAN and JULIO JONES–all playing out of their minds at the same time, trust me, there is no team in the NFL that will be able to stop the Falcons when the superbowl starts and the Falcons are playing in it. I am truly blessed and grateful to be the Falcons #1 fan and I hope I can get all the naysayers and the doubters to join the bandwagon once they realize the inevitable superbowl championship that is about to take place. Go Birds, surprise everyone and also myself included.

Preston Thompson

November 28th, 2011
2:13 pm

Something was said after the Broncose on one of the football talking shows that really rang my bell. I think it was Trent Green, the ex quarteback. He was talking about Tebow and how that man with all his baggage is winning. He said Tebow believes in himself, he believes he can make a difference, he believes in his teammates and with his constant positive attitude he has the entire locker room believing too. The defense plays the 60 minutes because they believe Tim will be the difference. The offense has been shaped to fit the talent they have and it’s working. My point here is the Falcons are missing this. And missing it in a terrible way. Yes the Falcons are under achievers. To many of them are to worried about how they look on TV. Their highlite reel? And Roddy dropping to many passes. The one constant is Gonzo. Is that dude ever good.

But worse of all is I’m concerned about Ryan. He is just too inconsistant. I know he’s just in his fourth year. Yeah, so was Rogers. The good teams don’t let up. They hammer till you ain’t breathing anymore. Not so with the birds. As long a Malarko is sitting in the box screwing up the QB’s head, don’t look for a change. The Falcons stay in the fetal position to much and I wonder if they can get out of it?

In consistent BloGGer

November 28th, 2011
2:59 pm

Don’t blame the offense in the second half. Blame boneheaded plays, like the muffed punt. That led to a score on a blown coverage by Owens. Blame Owens again for not turning his head and allowing Harvin to make a catch on the 1 yard line. Had he turned his head, he could of made an interceptions. Thake those 3 plays and this game never wold have been close.

BostonStrangler

November 28th, 2011
2:59 pm

Preson Thompson: I agree with most of your blog, and although Gonzales is more than great and is CERTAIN TO BE A HALL-OF-FAMER, when White was dropping tons of passes in games prior to the last two, it seemed like it rubbed off on Gonzo as well. I SAW GONZALES DROP AN UNCONTESTED KEY PASS IN THE NEW ORLEANS GAME THAT WOULD HAVE GIVEN THE FALCONS THE VICTORY OVER N.O. IN REGULATION OR O.T. Sure Gonzales almost never drops any, but he did that game and it cost the Falcons respect and noteriety in the league this year. Until the Falcons beat a great team: Packers, Eagles, Patriots, Cowboys, Giants or Saints, the MEDIA WILL CONTINUE TO LOOK AT THE FALCONS AS A HISTORIC DOORMAT AND A HOPELESS CASE AS FAR AS THEY ARE CONCERNED.

CGD..

November 28th, 2011
3:04 pm

Fal-cons have beaten only one team this year with a winning record.. Be honest, do you really think this squad has a shot to do some real damage in this year playoff run?

CGD..

November 28th, 2011
3:19 pm

Look this is the NFL, you can only hang with a receiver for 3-5 seconds at best!

The front 7 has to exert much more pressure on the opposing QB’s!!!!
This secondary is getting hung out to dry by this lousy front 7…………

CGD..

November 28th, 2011
3:31 pm

Yes Denver’s defense has overnight become the best defense in the NFL? Yes they believe in Tebow!

Do the Falcon players believe in their QB?

CGD..

November 28th, 2011
3:40 pm

Check that they beat two teams (Detroit and Titans) with winning records this year…

ForrestTucker

November 28th, 2011
4:02 pm

CGD..I dont think you have gotten your facts straight about the Falcons and the Denver Broncos. You shouldnt compare the Falcons to the Broncos because there is no comparison. the Falcons are on the cusp of being an elite team (as soon as Julio Jones gets the balls thrown to him again), while the Denver Broncos are a pretender. To show you the comparison and contrast between the two clubs: when the Falcons played the Detroit Lions we beat them easily ALTHOUGH THE SCORE SHOWS THE MARGIN OF VICTORY WAS JUST A TOUCHDOWN. The final score should have been by a much wider margin than that. When the Lions played Tim Tebow and the Denver Broncos, the Lions crushed the Broncos 45-10 and everyone was asking for the next quarterback in line to replace Tim Tebow. That comparison shows the Falcons can handle anybody and the teams that are worse than us (Denver) are trying to catch up with us. The Falcons are much better than their record and would have been undefeated this year, had they believed in themselves and trusted each other more