Falcons vs. Chargers: 4 key matchups (Abraham v. Harris)

 
Falcons defensive end Ray Edwards (right) is sporting a Mohawk these days. It's more than just a hairstyle. He and John Abraham (left) anchor the Falcons defensive line.  CURTIS COMPTON / CCOMPTON@AJC.COM
Falcons defensive end Ray Edwards (right) is sporting a Mohawk these days. It’s more than just a hairstyle. He and John Abraham (left) anchor the Falcons defensive line. CURTIS COMPTON / CCOMPTON@AJC.COM

Falcons DE John Abrham vs. Chargers LT Mike Harris: Abraham has 113 sacks, most amongst active players. He should have a favorable matchup against Harris, an undrafted rookie free agent with two career NFL starts. Harris (6-foot-5, 318) played at UCLA. The left tackle spot has been an issue for the Chargers since Marcus McNeill suffered a season-ending neck injury in a home loss to the Raiders last season. Abraham posted a sack/strip against the Chiefs. He moved into sole possession of second place on the team’s sack list with 59.5. Abraham played 71 percent of the snaps (49 of 69) against the Chiefs and  78 percent (57 of73) against the Broncos.

  Falcons RB Michael Turner vs. Chargers LB Takeo Spikes: Turner is off to a slow start this season. He has rushed 28 times for 74 yards (2.6 yards per carry) and one touchdown. He will attempt to have a big game against his former team and rebound from his DUI arrest. Spikes, who was voted a team captain, leads a unit that has shut down Oakland’s Darren McFadden and Tennessee’s Chris Johnson. The Chargers have yielded only 83 yards in two games. Spikes will make his 203rd NFL start.

Falcons MLB Akeem Dent vs. Chargers RB Ryan Mathews: Dent has played only 12 snaps this season as the Falcons have leaned heavily on their nickel defense that uses five defensive backs and two linebackers. Dent will see a lot of action against the Chargers’ rushing attack because the Falcons are set to use their base defense more often. Mathews, who is returning from a broken clavicle, was cleared for contact last week, but didn’t play in the 38-10 rout of Tennessee. Mathews played for Falcons offensive line coach Pat Hill at Fresno State. He has averaged 4.7 yards per carry in two seasons in the NFL. He rushed for 1,091 yards and six touchdowns in 14 games last season.

Falcons FS Thomas DeCoud vs. Chargers QB Philip Rivers: The Falcons face another elite quarterback in Rivers, who’s completed 48 of 65 passes for 515 yards (73.8 percent) for four touchdowns and one interception. He has a passer rating of 110.7. DeCoud will have some deep coverage and some ballhawking duties as they try to successfully disguise their coverages for a second consecutive game. “He’s just a very savvy quarterback,” DeCoud said. “He knows his system inside and out. He’s been with Norv [Turner] for five or six years. It’s just second nature to him now. You can see it in the way he delivers the ball and in the chemistry that has with his receivers.”

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22 comments Add your comment

Joe Tess Fish House

September 21st, 2012
1:21 pm

Joe Tess Fish House

September 21st, 2012
1:22 pm

HA!

As I siad earlier the Flacons only win if the refs make the same misteaks as last week. They got lucky.

DavidGilmour

September 21st, 2012
1:30 pm

How are we 3 point underdogs?

Saints fans….. How is the season shaping up so far?

ohhhhYEAH

September 21st, 2012
1:37 pm

DOL

Can you do me a favor and ask Smitty if he will EVER let us wear the black alternates of our current home jersey again? Not talking about the 1980s throwback, but the black version of the current jerseys. Growing up a Falcons fan when they wore the black tops with Anderson and Chandler and Mathis and Tuggle, I’d like to see the black tops a couple times a season.

ohhhhYEAH

September 21st, 2012
1:38 pm

Shoot, I’d even like to see us black it out when we play the Saints in the dome this year, black tops with the black pants and socks. Intimidation factor!

Grape Nuts are neither grapes or nuts

September 21st, 2012
1:42 pm

You mean, all black uniforms….Like the Saints?

No.

ohhhhYEAH

September 21st, 2012
2:01 pm

Fairly certain the Saints don’t have black helmets, and I’m even more certain they wont be wearing black jerseys in Atlanta. Not to mention, they don’t have a patent on all things black.

ohhhhYEAH

September 21st, 2012
2:02 pm

And even if we don’t go all black uni’s, I’d still at least like to see the black jerseys once or twice a year.

LDawg

September 21st, 2012
2:10 pm

So Fish House – we got lucky? Those 3 INTs didn’t have anything to do with it? How about keeping the great Peyton Manning off his game for 3 quarters? BTW – get spell check.

True ATL Fan

September 21st, 2012
2:13 pm

Yeah we have so many alternate looks to the uniform that would appease both sides (you know what im talking about so don’t act). The white on black road uni, the red on black home uni, the black on white home would all be a good switch every now and then. And you still have the two traditional with the throwback with the red helmet.

John

September 21st, 2012
2:21 pm

Joe Tess Fish House
September 21st, 2012
1:22 pm

HA!

As I siad earlier the Flacons only win if the refs make the same misteaks as last week. They got lucky.

Lucky they won? Dude they smashed Denver in every category. What game were you watching? GO sit down and shut the hell up

ATLSWAG

September 21st, 2012
2:24 pm

ohhhhYEAH

September 21st, 2012
2:27 pm

True ATL Fan

I dont know that the red top on black pants would look great, thatd look more like an AFL of CFL uniform I think. But it might work, who knows?

Nique

September 21st, 2012
3:53 pm

This game with speak volumes concerning the maturity, composure, & killer instinct of this team. If we can rebound from an emotional win like last week, on a short week, one in which we travel all the way across country to beat one of the other 5 remaining teams in the NFL, then we’ve grown a lot as a franchise & are really sending a message to the rest of the league & to the fans that this year’s team, under improved coaching is a different Falcons team, a team that’s earning the trust of all despite not yet having a playoff win under this regime. I believe that we’re a better team than the Chargers & that we should win, I just wanna see us execute & make it happen, I’ll be really impressed!

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FalconFanInVt

September 21st, 2012
11:11 pm

17th!!!!

I wouldm’t call Phillip Rivers “elite”…. We should have a good game

P B Orr

September 22nd, 2012
12:24 am

The Chargers have not been fast starters under Turner. They mix wins and losses randomly in the early part of the year. So that’s in our favor.

johnm

September 22nd, 2012
4:59 pm

I hate when people blame a win or loss on bad calls or injuries. Every team deals with injuries and bad calls. As for mondays game I thought it all came out even in terms of calls. The falcons were the better team-nuff said

Samuel

September 23rd, 2012
5:40 am

Philip Rivers is not an elite quarterback, he hasn’t won anything. Is he a good Quarterback yes? Being said that the Falcons should be Alright and come away with a victory.

rushing attack

September 23rd, 2012
11:56 am

Chargers by ten

September 23rd, 2012
12:42 pm

Neither Rivers nor Ryan have won anything, but I would take either of them over the supposedly “elite” Eli Manning or Ben Roethlisberger. Rings or lack thereof are a
reflection of the team as a whole, not the individual merit of the Quarterback.

Mr. Hankey

September 23rd, 2012
1:54 pm

If we have a blackout out in Atlanta we won’t be able to see whoes in the stands unless somebody smiles.