THE CURSE IS OVER!!!!!!!!!!!

Curse = R.I.P.. January 3rd, 2009; Tampa Bay, Florida

This might be a bit much, but who cares.

That’s right you heard correctly………the ridiculous, irrelevant, awful curse of never having back-to-back winning seasons in franchise history is OVER! The Falcons battled through so much in a season riddled with an unbelievable amount of injuries and a ridiculously hard schedule and the Falcons deserve all the credit in the world for what they’ve accomplished this year. This may sound preposterous to the common outsider, but this was an enormous game for the players, coaches, fans, staff, and owner of the Atlanta Falcons.

Defense Had a Big Day (AP)

They held the dubious honor of having the longest streak of any franchise of never having back-to-back winning seasons and that graciously and wonderfully ended on this cold day in Tampa Bay. Things looked bleak many times throughout the year, when the Falcons injuries started piling up from training camp, but especially when the Falcons lost to the Saints at home at sat at 6-7 on the year knowing they had to win out to break the streak. Add in the fact that the curse may stay in tact when Matt Ryan threw an interception in the Falcons own territory. Chris Owens had just been burnt for the tying TD, but redemption would have different forms in the victory and the death of the curse.

Redemption

On the very next play, Owens picked off Josh Freeman to set up the next drive. Tied at 10-10 in the game, Jason Snelling took over the game and took it down the field refusing to quit. Facing third down, Ryan had his chance at redemption as well. An out pass that looked like it may be picked went right to Roddy White, who made an amazing play to stay in bounds and score the go-ahead touchdown. The most ironic play may have been when Brent Grimes picked off Josh Freeman again on a 3rd and 1 in the endzone on a deep pass. One of the most beleaguered players throughout the year ended up saving the game. Jason Snelling’s hard-running and recently added (and former Bucs kicker) Matt Bryant iced the game.  (Check out DOL’s New Blog)

No Playoffs, But a Great Feeling

Ryan and Owens had redemption (AP)

The 2009 Atlanta Falcons season may now officially be over with no postseason trip and there’s plenty of time to look ahead to reflect on what could’ve been and what may be yet to come. But the feat that this team achieved with all the adversity in the world is pretty unbelievable and gives fans hope for the future. Amazing credit and praise go to all the individuals in the Atlanta Falcons organization. They earned the right to say these beautiful words:

THE CURSE IS OVER!!!!!!

Feels so good to say doesn’t it?

Tons more to come later today…………..but for now, enjoy it Falcons fans!

103 comments Add your comment

JJ

January 3rd, 2010
4:41 pm

DING DONG THE CURSE IS DEAD !

January 3rd, 2010
4:41 pm

FIRST !!! to sayThe curse is dead and so is that monkey on the Falcons backs !!!!!!!!!! YESSSSSSSSSS!!!!!
I am ready for a parade down Peaqchtree!

Coleman

January 3rd, 2010
4:41 pm

Congratulations, Birds!

DING DONG THE CURSE IS DEAD !

January 3rd, 2010
4:42 pm

and Peachtree too !!! lol

JJ

January 3rd, 2010
4:42 pm

Thank you falcons for ending the curse!!!

LRD

January 3rd, 2010
4:44 pm

Thank you for the start of a new era.. officially… sweet it is.. sweet it is..

CBrass

January 3rd, 2010
4:48 pm

AB, TD, Smitty. We have the right people in place.

LRD,

I hope that our first game is home so that Gonzo can accomplish that feat in the Terror Dome.

Keys To the City

January 3rd, 2010
4:53 pm

Will there be a tickertape parade tomorrow?

Jeffery

January 3rd, 2010
5:04 pm

Now we can go on with life without hearing about that STUPID curse……

I do feel bad to TG though. Would have been nice to get that 1000th reception.

RW

January 3rd, 2010
5:06 pm

Falcons are on the right course.With a good draft and the right free agents they will make it three in a row.

DHunt

January 3rd, 2010
5:13 pm

A winning season in the NFL is saying something. Way to end the season on a positive note Falcons. Now we can look forward to several months of wrangling, second guessing, personnel moves, and all the drama that comes with… the off-season.

Birdman

January 3rd, 2010
5:16 pm

Way to go Falcons!!!!!!!
I don,t care if it is the end of the season . N F L . Look out here come the Falcons for years to come.
Thats all I,ll say about that …..!!!
Game ball Snelling . Awesome ..

DJ Sniper

January 3rd, 2010
5:17 pm

Congrats to my Falcons for finally breaking the curse. This is a good springboard for us heading into next season. Here is what I think this team needs for next season, via the draft and free agency:

Offense:

Tight End: As good as Tony Gonzalez is, he’s not gonna play forever. Time to find someone who can be groomed to take his place.

Running Back: I like Jerious Norwood, but he’s just not a strong runner between the tackles and he’s not durable at all. Jason Snelling is definitely a keeper. He may have earned himself an extension after this game.

Wide Receiver: This is about building depth at this position. Losing Harry Douglas in training camp hurt this offense a lot more than people realize. After Roddy White and Michael Jenkins, we were really thin. I don’t think Marty Booker and Brian Finneran will be around next year, and Eric Weems needs to stick with special teams.

Defense:

Nose Tackle: I know we drafted Peria Jerry this year, but the defense could really use another space eating, block out the sun NT like we had with Grady Jackson. Someone to command double teams and allow out LB’s to run free.

Cornerback: Although this position has been in the most flux this season, I must give credit to Brent Grimes. He played like crap through most of this season, but he really stepped up over the last 3 games with 5 INT’s. His coverage has been solid too. Christopher Owens also played very well once he became a starter. I don’t think it was a coincidence that the secondary improved vastly once Chris Houston went down with an injury. He needs to be sent packing.

Defensive End: Like Gonzalez, John Abraham isn’t gonna play forever. Kroy Biermann was pretty decent, and we still have yet to see what we’re gonna get out of Lawrence Sidbury. I think a year of seasoning will do him some good.

Lastly, the coaching staff needs to open up the playbook for next season and let Matt Ryan do more. I know we’re a run first team, but if we can avoid the injury bug and get the coaching staff to unleash the beast, then we will be a force to be reckoned with.

Sarah B

January 3rd, 2010
5:18 pm

Ding Done The Cures is Dead – you beat me to the punch and stole the line right out of my head! Great minds think alike… Go Falcons!!! Thank you Birds!!!

Sarah B

January 3rd, 2010
5:20 pm

I did feel bad TG only needed one more catch to hit 1,000 though. I guess he’ll get it 1st game next year.

DJ Sniper

January 3rd, 2010
5:29 pm

Sarah, I forgot to mention that part. Although I agree with the strategy of running the ball to eat up the clock, I thought they would at least call one or two plays to try and get TG his 1000th catch.

BirdMan

January 3rd, 2010
5:31 pm

Forget about his size! Brent Grimes has been talked bad about all year but if you really watched him play, he has been solid. He keeps tight coverage on receivers, actually turns to make a play on the ball unlike Houston, and is a good tackler. He really is a keeper. I’m more concerned that we gave up a second round pick for Tye Hill, who has watched from the sideline and probably has no trade value.

MonkeySlayer

January 3rd, 2010
5:37 pm

“They held the dubious honor of having the longest streak of any franchise of never having back-to-back winning seasons and that graciously and wonderfully ended on this cold day in Tampa Bay”…but won’t we hold this “honor” until another team breaks it?…I think it’s more the fact that we have never had B2B winning seasons!

MonkeySlayer

January 3rd, 2010
5:40 pm

About TG…I wouldn’t have given him that 1,000th today either…another reason to make certain he comes back next year!!

Jimmy

January 3rd, 2010
5:44 pm

Yes, we have the longest such streak in history.
But we will never add another season to it.
And yes, it is great to have B2B winning seasons.
It shows that we are breaking the old losing patterns.
It gives us a reason to hope for better things.
The curse is over!!!

J

January 3rd, 2010
5:56 pm

Hello,
I still wonder if it would have been better to “play the youngsters” and perhaps not win the last few games in respect to Draft Picks. Considering how long we have been eliminated from the Playoffs, it is something to think about.

Don’t get me wrong, I am glad the curse is over. However, often 9-7 is good enough to get into the Playoffs. However, not this year. With our Secondary needs and D-Line needs, 4-5 picks higher really might make the difference. Unfortunately, we do not have a 2nd Round Pick from the Gonzalez Trade.
Cheers,
J

Coop

January 3rd, 2010
6:01 pm

MS – What? We may have had the longest streak, but the key is HAD. It’s over baby!!! This franchise is headed in the right direction. I’m totally stoked. The only pause I have is looking back at the NYG and CAR games. Only losses we had to non-playoff teams. win this and we’re playijng next week (maybe even a bye). Anyway, good season. Write it down, we WILL make the playoffs next year. Beef up both lines, get a shut down CB, then draft for depth (OLB, TE, WR, RB).

BT

January 3rd, 2010
6:03 pm

Nice win today, the D and Snelling were outstanding.
Now, the teams goes to work on 3 winning seasons in a row, with making the playoffs two out of three years.

JJ, Lil Dave and Dave`s lady-
Enjoyed meeting y`all today.
It was fun.

eeeegs

January 3rd, 2010
6:14 pm

Birdman… I believe we only gave up a seventh round pick to get tye hill. In my opinion that was not a lot to give up to get a guy who was a first round pick. He had a lot of injuries in the beginning of his career and didnt live up to his potential. I liked the move by dimitroff at the time but he just didnt work out. Next year i believe our secondary will be much improved with grimes and owens. Chris houston is a waste of a roster spot and should be given a pink slip

Sick & Tired Of Being Sick & Tired

January 3rd, 2010
6:17 pm

First off…..CONGRATULATIONS TO THE ATLANTA FALCONS!!!! Having been a Falcons fan from the old Fulton County Stadium days….having an overall winning season is a small win for a team that has consistently battled injuries all season long.

I look forward to seeing what changes/additions are made during the off-season and with the draft. At least no one can honestly say that this team is not headed in the right direction.

Being a football junkie, I’m not looking forward to my withdrawal period!!!!

skillett willett

January 3rd, 2010
6:19 pm

Before you spend your 401k on season tix, ask yourself if the Falcons beat anyone with a winning record this year?

All the pub about the curse ending is a concerted effort to sell tix for next year! No thanks, they are simply overpriced.

Birdman

January 3rd, 2010
6:20 pm

To witch Birdman are you talking to . There now seams to be 2 .??????

Ken Strickland

January 3rd, 2010
6:22 pm

It would’ve been great if we could have made it to the playoffs, because our DEF has been playing some serious shutdown DEF, especially against the run. We are now solid and deep at DE, DT, LB and safety. The same CB’s that were previously considered too small and short, have been on fire over the last 4gms, against both the run and the pass.

I don’t see the Falcons having another losing season for a long, long time. Our OFF has overcome serious injuries to our starting QB, RB, RG, LT, RT, backup RB JNorwood, as well as losing backup WR’s HDouglas and BFinneran for the season. We won’t have to start next season like we started this season with a lot of unanswered questions about our DL, especially DT, OLB, safeties and CB’s.

CBrass

January 3rd, 2010
6:32 pm

*off topic

Both the Giants and Denver started 6-0(correct me if I’m wrong). So what the hell has happened to those teams?

StuDawg

January 3rd, 2010
6:37 pm

Very proud of the Falcons!!!! Way to play! Snelling stepped up, as did Owens and Grimes. Tony G is awesome! Great game and great year Falcons! Cant wait for next season!

Birdman

January 3rd, 2010
6:40 pm

FRYIN PAN
The Birds had a lot of injuries with a few games lost by field goals and field goal kicker .There is a lot of reasons for there losses some of witch they just got beat. But no team out there in the NFL looked froward to an easy victory with them. And I think they did Dam good .
The NFL knows whats here and what will be here for years to come . Where they are going well it sure puts a smile on your face ” if your a falcons fan ”

Now go fry some eggs are something and make yourself useful .

Thank you Birds

Sarah B

January 3rd, 2010
6:53 pm

Our run D turned Cadillac into a Pontiac today…

JJ

January 3rd, 2010
6:57 pm

BT, ditto.

Ken, love your far to infrequent posts. You have allot of football wisdom. Agree with what you posted except DT. Lewis has not returned to form after his knee surgery and theirs no guarantee jerry will either. IMHO, we need a mammoth NT in this yrs draft! Yea we talked about fa, dont see it happening in this labor climate. If this yr is uncapped, get rid of ja98 from our ledger! No one will trade for him and his contract, time to dump mccays’ draft pick.

Sarah B

January 3rd, 2010
6:57 pm

Wrap-up: Falcons 20, Buccaneers 10
January, 3, 2010 Jan 36:47PM ETEmail Print Share By Pat YasinskasThe Atlanta Falcons need to take the following phrase and throw it in Lake Lanier, which borders their team headquarters in Flowery Branch, Ga. — “The Atlanta Falcons have never had back-to-back winning seasons.”

That’s because the Falcons now have done that for the first time in their 44-season history. They assured it when they beat the Buccaneers to finish 9-7. Great, now it’s time to move on.

The Falcons need loftier goals. They ended up making the most out of this star-crossed season, which featured a whole bunch of injuries and a brutal schedule. The decent finish is some consolation, but the Falcons had hoped for more after going 11-5 and making the playoffs last season.

They have a talented roster, but they’ve also got some offseason work to do. It’s time to take the next step. It’s time to go out and shoot for more than just having a winning season or two. It’s time for this team to work on becoming a legitimate Super Bowl contender.

Sarah B

January 3rd, 2010
7:01 pm

Hey JJ – sorry I didn’t make it but I was exhausted from that late night delivery of my friend to the airport. I barely made it out of the shower in time for kickoff. Hope to see you soon though. Box and I had a good time Wednesday, sorry you didn’t make that meet & greet. Maybe next Sunday for a playoff game :)

Ed

January 3rd, 2010
7:03 pm

Huge win and a great send off for next year. Now it’s time to start looking forward to and discussing the draft.

LRD

January 3rd, 2010
7:07 pm

Let’s see… Lost our returner/#3 reciever even before the season began, had a QB carrying so many expecations who had a sophomore slump and then a lingering injury, a running back that started off slow and then turned it on only to end up on the sideline, another running back that has been limping through the entire season, starting Corner lost early in the season leaving many to wonder what will happen to our secondary..and that secondary ends up rotating through until we find the shortest corners with the biggest hearts (and hitters) to carry us through. A Dline losing our #1 pick , and then rotations, scheme questioning, etc. and… then we toss in the #3 hardest schedule.

Yet we end up with a winning season, a back to back winning season, and ending the season with a win streak.
Not too shabby, not too shabby indeed.

Sarah B

January 3rd, 2010
7:14 pm

Here Here LRD! Glad you will be joining us at the Dome next year!

Scott

January 3rd, 2010
7:18 pm

The falcons can’t deny Sneiling a chance at competiting for the number 1 running back spot on the team . This young man could be a star in the league if given the opportunity to play every game . I Really like what i see out there , Pay Sneiling .

The New Falcons

January 3rd, 2010
7:30 pm

The Defense improved due to no CH23 or JA98 on the field. I’ve been wondering why CMS kept them in the lineup for years of sorry play just hoping they may eventually improve? I think we may could have gone to playoffs if these two were on the bench (or on some other team’s roster) from the start of this season instead of at the end of this season (and the kicker switch was earlier). I would have liked to see Moore get some experience at safety some this year but the injury bug hit us hard this year. The team really played hard on every play and a 9-7 season with that schedule was pretty good so I’m a happy fan and a happy season ticket holder that can’t wait for next year. GO FALCONS!

JJ

January 3rd, 2010
7:31 pm

Question: Has LT Baker lived up to rd1 status? BT and I discussed possibly drafting another LT and moving baker to the right side. Just a thought…

CBrass

January 3rd, 2010
7:34 pm

Just a thought but would love to hear what you guys/gals think.

Norwood can be very affective Mad Mike just have to use him the correct way. Not sure if I’m correct in saying this but his playing style is very similar to the style of Reggie Bush. Both have speed to kill and can catch the ball well out of the backfield. Bush gets most of his touches via screen pass,quick passes in the flat or on reverses. If Norwood was used the same way he would give us that extra spark that is/was need on the outside.

Coop

January 3rd, 2010
7:51 pm

JJ – Agree with another LT and moving Baker to RT. Problem is we have very pressing needs (DT and/or CB). Can’t afford to spend a 1st rounder on LT. Baker is above average ond only has about 20 games under his belt.

wes r

January 3rd, 2010
7:56 pm

The birds are indeed on the right trac!! If we stack our secondary, get a good draft pick, and do verry good in the free agency watch out for the Atlanta falcons!!! I’m also excited to see what arthur blank will do if the collective bargain deal goes down hopefully we can stack our team!!!

JJ

January 3rd, 2010
8:00 pm

Coop, agreed, my santa wish list is NT, CB and whatever. Think TD is the best GM/draft guru the falcons have had in yrs. HOWEVER, he has picked some injury-prone college kids who have continued their way into the nfl. Call it bad luck, whatever, but its becoming a theme.

BigHittas

January 3rd, 2010
8:06 pm

CONGRATS BIRDS!!!

breaking the curse and showing some resolve in the last few games shows a bit of promise!

Ken Strickland

January 3rd, 2010
8:21 pm

JJ-thanks a lot for the encouragement. Look at our DT situation this way. We lost our #1 pick, DT PJerry, our previous starting DT, TLewis, didn’t make it back to form this yr, and we ended up playing our 2nd and 3rd string DT’s(rookie VWalker, converted DE JAnderson and TJohnson) down the stretch. Tell me, can you remember any other time in Falcons history when we were as dominant up the middle against the run?

We’re so solid and deep at DT with TLewis, JAnderson, JBabineaux, VWalker, TJohnson and PJerry, there’s no guarantee PJerry will start next yr, and TLewis could end up being traded or released. The entire time we had a big body at DT in GJackson, we had one of the NFL’s worst run DEF’s. I said all last yr that GJackson, and his lack of mobility and athleticism, was the main problem with our interior run DEF. I don’t see us getting rid of JAnderson because he gives us valuable depth at both DT and DE without the need for an extra DLineman.

We have 3 good CB’s in CHouston, BGrimes and COwens. The problem is, neither has demonstrated the ability to consistently cover a teams #1 WR. They are all better suited to cover a teams #2 WR, although BGrimes could be an exception. The jury is still out on CB BWilliams, who acquitted himself quite well as our primary cover CB before his season ending injury.

As far as LT Baker is concerned, talent wise he’s more than measured up, but overcoming injuries has been his biggest problem. Moving him to the other side won’t make his injury problems any less of an issue.

robertussen

January 3rd, 2010
8:27 pm

what a great finish to an unhealthy year for our birds watch out next year nfl back to back to back and a deep run in the playoffs who knows we could win it all

geno

January 3rd, 2010
8:28 pm

9-7…..so what, we were better last year…….any way next year, expect 6-10…..too many holes to fill, quaterback turning out to be just average, not enough speed, not enough playmakers, lackluster coaching, not enough draft pics, etc……you heard it hear first.

robertussen

January 3rd, 2010
8:29 pm

oh well back to boring sundays till next year