Atlanta Falcons: Disguised coverages have led to interceptions

FLOWERY BRANCH –  The Falcons had two interceptions against the Giants to give them 18 for the season, which ranks fourth in the league. Only Chicago (21), Giants (20) and Arizona (22) have more interceptions.

The Falcons are also plus-9 in takeaways, which is eighth in the league before Monday’s night game between the New York Jets and Tennessee.

To go with their 18 interceptions, the Falcons have nine fumble recoveries for 27 turnovers. The offense has 14 interceptions and four fumbles for 18 turnovers.

The defense has recorded six games with two interceptions are more. They are 6-0 in those contests.

Players credit the ability to disguise their coverages as the key to interceptions.

“If we can confuse a quarterback and make him throw it somewhere where he wasn’t expecting to throw it, or after play-fake, look back and see a completely different coverage, it helps us out exponentially,” said safety Thomas DeCoud, who leads the team with six interceptions. “It’s (paid) dividends and helped our ability to get the ball back this year.”

Utility infielder Franks: When safety Chris Hope, who was filling for William Moore, went down with a head injury Sunday, the Falcons used cornerback Dominique Franks at safety.

“Dominique is like our utility infielder, to use a baseball term,” Smith said. “He’s a guy that can play corner, nickel and safety for us.”

Rookie safety Charles Mitchell also saw some action in the dime package when the Giants went to a four-receiver formation.

Moore’s return from a rib injury will depend on how well he performs in a workout with the trainers on Tuesday.

Etc.: Tackle Lamar Holmes, the Falcons third-round draft choice (Southern Miss), made his NFL debut against the Giants. He played seven plays. … Backup center/guard Joe Hawley has served his four-game suspension for violating the league’s substance abuse policy and will return to the team on Tuesday, Smith said. The team has not announced who it will release to open up a roster spot for Hawley’s return. Guard Harland Gunn was signed to take Hawley’s spot on Nov. 20. He has been inactive for the last four games. … Falcons running backs caught six passes for 48 yards. … Hope’s hard tackle on Giants receiver Hakeem Nicks will attract league review and may lead to a fine. He was flagged for unnecessary roughness on the play.


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37 comments Add your comment

Elvis is Alive (and Singing)

December 17th, 2012
6:45 pm


December 17th, 2012
6:47 pm

I thought Moore had a hamstring injury. Is it a hamstring and a rib?


December 17th, 2012
6:52 pm

Hamstring. Let him sit Hope is a veteran and is playing well.

Elvis is Alive (and Singing)

December 17th, 2012
6:53 pm

Oh Happy Days..Smashmouth Falcons football and a SIGNATURE WIN !!!
Tough can’t be taught but it sure makes a great the mind of an opponent.
Detroit is next and the swing pass, slant and drag pass across the middle are used when Stafford gets hurried.
He doessn’t like to get hit and will throw to avoid ANY contact.
You proved me wrong about your abilities to beat a quality team “between the lines”.
Kudos to all..take a day off..
Rise Up ..Angry Birds….Rise Up…”Its Now or Never”


December 17th, 2012
7:00 pm

Disguised coverages have sure helped but this defensive secondary is constantly looking at the QB rather than chasing receivers around with their back to the QB. Asante Samual is a master of keeping his eye on the QB while sticking to receivers. They all do it now and it is making a big difference. GO FALCONS! YOU ARE RISING UP!


December 17th, 2012
7:16 pm



December 17th, 2012
7:27 pm

Congradulations to the Falcons. I am really impressed with how as a team they focus on one game at a time and seem to be even keel win or lose.

The Falcons showed what they are capable of and I hope this carries over in the up-coming games.

Great game if you are an Atlanta Fan!


Jo Jo

December 17th, 2012
7:27 pm

Great defensive scheme by a great coordinator, props to coach Nolan and to the Falcon D for great execution. DOL, you initially reported William Moore had a hamstring injury and not a rib injury. Also Hope’s helmet hit was on Cruz, not Nicks.


December 17th, 2012
7:31 pm

Just heard about Matt Ryans fall at home today doing some repairs, according to TSN he may have suffered a broken ankle. I really cant believe this news.

Big Bird

December 17th, 2012
7:32 pm

I see bad news travels fast,and after yesterday’s game. What a bad break, no pun intended.


December 17th, 2012
8:26 pm

They should NOT let Franks be a punt returner! The guy looks scared and he is so slow. It feels as if he is one of those punt returners that will fumble in crucial situations so I hope he doesn’t return punts in the playoffs.


December 17th, 2012
9:06 pm

Finchdawg, what are you smoking or drinking tonight. I just checked TSN and did a google search on Ryan and did not find a report of an injury.

Of course the Falcons wouldn’t relase it until Tuesday if he did…… Probably as a rib injury.

Michael M.

December 17th, 2012
9:24 pm

Only thing Matt Ryan is breaking is ‘ Team Records ‘, and he will be breaking some more as this Season moves along…………………………….stick that in your crack pipe and smoke on it awhile, you may discover a new kind of high………………………….hehehehe


December 17th, 2012
9:35 pm

Could be an ain’t fan lurking in the weeds.


December 18th, 2012
7:33 am

You can call it “disguised” coverages… can call it “confusing” the quarterback… can call it anything you want! One things for sure: This is the very BEST secondary in Falcon history! In previous seasons, when the defensive huddle broke, it was evident that only ONE of the secondary guys knew where he was suppose to be when the ball was snapped! NOW, it seems like all FOUR of the secondary guys knows EXACTLY where they are suppose to be and what coverage they are in! You look around the NFL and what you mostly see in the secondary is BUFFOONERY! Just a bunch of clowns running around like a chicken with their heads cut off! Our secondary is a thing of beauty! And the strangest thing has been when one of them goes out with an injury, the guy coming is as good or even BETTER than the guy he just replaced! The Falcon secondary? A thing of beauty!!!

just win.

December 18th, 2012
7:36 am

goodness, doesn’t ANYONE proofread these blogs before they’re published?? hamstring, not ribs. cruz, not nicks. come on, man. is it too much to ask the local scribe to also RISE UP? the falcons clearly have.


December 18th, 2012
8:12 am

Don’t think there’ll be too much attention against Hope. Looked on replay like a shot to the shoulder, not the head. Admittedly high, but not targeting. The helmets banged as a reaction (by both) to the shoulder hits. Moderately incidental, though still dangerous. Obviously stung both, but didn’t appear intentionally vicious. Minor fine? Agreed with the flag, but it looked worse live than it did on replay. Don’t like defenders leaving their feet to deliver hits, unless jumping sideways.

D. Orlando Ledbetter

December 18th, 2012
9:10 am

okeetee — The most impressive play to me on Sunday was Chris Hope’s hit on Nicks.


December 18th, 2012
9:56 am



December 18th, 2012
9:59 am



December 18th, 2012
10:00 am

Love Mike Nolan’s aggressiveness.

Scott Case's leggs

December 18th, 2012
10:53 am

D-led the hit that will cost Hope money will be the one where he laid the wood to Taio Cruz….It was a dumb hit…and cost the team a 3 and out.

Also, what did you think of the 1 touch the finally gave to A. Smith this game?

Dirty A

December 18th, 2012
11:27 am

A. Smith looks like Franks returning punts…No more touches for Antoine Smith. Please let HD return punts…because Franks scares me with his ball handling skills. Micheal Turner is getting better running the ball late in the season…maybe a fresh Turner is better later in the season. Go Falcons….


December 18th, 2012
12:28 pm

The most impressive play to me Sunday was the WHOLE secondary covering whomever they were suppose to cover EVERYTIME they were suppose to cover them…..and not leaving any receivers WIDEOPEN on ANY pass plays or even dump offs to the running backs! A+ for the secondary!


December 18th, 2012
12:49 pm

Our secondary will be tested vs Calvin Johnson this weekend. Clinching home field will not be easy, we’ll be on the road vs a team with nothing to lose. Fairley and Suh will be gunning for Matt. GO FALCONS


December 18th, 2012
1:47 pm

DeCoud is DaBomb that blows up QBs.

Scott Case's leggs

December 18th, 2012
2:00 pm

Gotta run the ball to win the game…


December 18th, 2012
2:10 pm

On the replay, they did show that Samuel broke his zone coverage to make a break on the ball. He knew where the ball was going, he knew that he could get to it, he knew he could catch it(after exactly six bobbles), and that the Falcons D could dominate the game. Thank you Nolan, best Falcons defense since the days of the gritzblitz.


December 18th, 2012
2:15 pm

I am so tired of the disrespect by ESPN the Falcons blew the Giants out 34-0 and they have them ranked at number 4 in powerpolls? How the hXXX
they even have the Broncos ranked ahead of us and we beat them. Can you say media BIAS!!!!


December 18th, 2012
2:21 pm

I mean ranked #5 BS


December 18th, 2012
3:01 pm

The Samuel interception was a critical play in the game, but did you see how close dumb Akeem Dent came to knocking it out of his hands? He had no business being near that play…but Dent is usually out of position.


December 18th, 2012
3:52 pm

“Our secondary will be tested vs Calvin Johnson this weekend. Clinching home field will not be easy, we’ll be on the road vs a team with nothing to lose.”

….I think the Lions have mailed in the season. They can’t make the playoffs and would rather be golfing now that Winter has set in! If we don’t lay a Carolina Panther egg…..we should win this game and then have two weeks off to heal our aches and pains…..or is it 3 weeks? No need to worry about beating the Bucs…..and then a bye week….so yeah, it is three weeks off!!! As long as we don’t lose our edge, stay in the film room, don’t go out to strip clubs, pick up DUI’s, etc…..we should be in good shape for the playoffs!


December 18th, 2012
8:15 pm



December 18th, 2012
10:37 pm


….if the game means nothing…and it won’t it we beat Detroit on Saturday night, you can bet your bottom dollar 2 things will happen: 1) we will be resting almost ALL of our starters for 3 quarters or more. 2) we will probably lose the game and it won’t mean a dag gone thing! Healthy, refreshed football players tend to make better decisions, play with more energy and should perform better than the banged up, achy type!


December 19th, 2012
2:16 pm

So proud of the Falcons but I do wish we had a little more threat at P returner

Fan since 66

December 19th, 2012
6:09 pm

@ Nick…You get the award for the biggest understatement of the day! Can’t figure out why Franks is still running back punts. And I use the term “running back punts” very loosely. I read earlier today someone saying Franks routine is two steps right, two steps left then fall down. Not trying to be mean, but that’s about it! We don’t have a punt return game. Whether the blame is on Franks or one the blocking schemes, I just don’t know. They never show a wide angle view of the field on punts. I’m sure the CS has access to that, so maybe they know it’s not Franks’ fault. If it’s not on Franks, they need to darn well fix it in the blocking schemes.Gets real old knowing that a punt return is at the very best only going for 28 yards. (Best I can determine that’s Franks longest)
Go Falcons!

Reaalism is Key

December 19th, 2012
6:44 pm

Dominique Franks needs to go! He is so sorry….

Just let Harry Douglas return punts