Atlanta Falcons: Birds Fall to Saints

Too Little, Too Late

New Orleans Saints cornerback Jabari Greer (33) breaks up a pass in the end zone intended for Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Roddy White (84) on fourth down, ending the Atlanta Falcons hope for a win, in the second half an NFL football game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Sunday, Nov. 11, 2012. The Saint won 31-27. (AP Photo/Bill Feig)

That's About Right (Bill Feig)

All the media-elite-talking-heads should be ecstatic, the Falcons finally lost and they lost to everyone’s favorite darlings, the hated Saints. But hey, it’s only the regular season and, as we all know, the regular season doesn’t matter, right? The late game magic finally ran out and, frankly, the Birds deserved to lose. They started fast, blew way to many opportunities, and allowed the Saints to dictate the entire game, save the last quarter. Even Falcons fans and Bird Cage members knew they’d lose at some point, but it just had to be to the Bountygate Saints. A look at the Falcons first loss……….

Blew a Fast Start

The Falcons couldn’t have asked for any better start to the game. They had some big plays, scored on their first drive, and literally intercepted the first play of the hated Saints. Even though there was a shadow, garbage penalty on Asante Samuel for “excessive celebration,” the Falcons bogged down and settled for a field goal. Sure, it was points, but the chance to go up 14-0 was definitely a wasted opportunity. After a hot start, the Falcons evidently went back into conservative mode where Drew Brees had enough time to bake a cake and do his taxes and the offense was hell bent on running Turner through a brick wall and taking losses on first down. It looked as though the game may get out of hand until the defense finally found a way to stop the hated Saints and the offense pulled themselves out of their hyper-conservative funk. Fact is, the Falcons had been living on borrowed time with their comebacks, and that magic finally ran out.

Let Matt Ryan Carry This Team

New Orleans Saints wide receiver Lance Moore (16) makes a leaping pas reception in front of Atlanta Falcons middle linebacker Akeem Dent (52) and outside linebacker Stephen Nicholas (54) in the second half an NFL football game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Sunday, Nov. 11, 2012. (AP Photo/Bill Haber)

Defense Shredded (Bill Haber)

Ryan had a career high with 402 yards and 3 touchdowns and yet the Falcons offense always finds a way to bring it back to Turner. This is a new day and it’s a new Falcons team. Michael Turner has done a magnificent job for the Falcons since he’s been here and may be on a track for the Falcons Ring of Honor, but his time has passed. Not sure whether it’s Smith or Koetter, but the truth is that most times when Turner gets the ball instead of Ryan, it’s usually not as good. This doesn’t mean that the Falcons have to throw the ball 50 times every game, but at some point, Ryan should be allowed to do what Brady, Manning, Rodgers, and Brees do with their teams.

ZERO Pass Rush

For the longest time fans were able to blame Brian Van Gorder and by extension Mike Smith. Well, we have one of the best coordinators in the game and it’s true that Sean Weatherspoon was surely missed, but the Falcons don’t have much of anything in terms of rushing (or even disrupting) the quarterback. Drew Brees had enough time to cut the grass, do the dishes,  and plan his Bountygate party in the pocket on Sunday. The Falcons mustered one sack, but rarely was pressured whatsoever. The defense stepped up some in the second half, but overall it was another pitiful display by the defense in pressuring the QB. Fans no longer know whether it’s the defensive tackles, the defensive ends, the linebackers, or the scheme to pressure the QB. They were sent on bltizes on Sunday, but most times they looked pedestrian and were easily picked up. John Abraham is the lone exception and how long does it take to get him some help. This did not look like the defense who confused and stymied Peyton Manning and Philip Rivers at all. Somethings got to give with the defense and lack of pressure.

Wasted Plays

Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) passes from the pocket in the first half of an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons at Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Sunday, Nov. 11, 2012. (AP Photo/Bill Haber)

400 Yards, 3 TDs = Loss (Bill Haber)

This is not a hatchet job on Michael Turner. The guy has done wonders for this franchise and likely will get a look at the Falcons Ring of Honor, but fans can easily see and call a wasted play coming on first down to Michael Turner. Given first and goal and a chance to go ahead in the game, the Falcons predictably go to Turner (as they always seem to do) to not only a stop, but a loss on the play. It was brought up in the offseason whether or not Turner fits in the offense and it becomes painfully clear every single week that giving the ball to Turner on first down is a wasted play. It’s not necessarily his fault, but seeing undrafted Chris Ivory run like a man possessed makes Turner seem like relic on the Falcons offense.

Franks Not the Answer

This is not meant to be slam against Dominique Franks, but the punt return game has become nothing more than catching the punt with a fair catch and surely is not threat to return it and get some yards. Perhaps Eric Weems was undervalued after all (this author admits). Dominique Franks had a blast on the scene in preseason with his dynamic punt return for a touchdown, but ever since he seems tentative at best and weak at worst at returning punts. The Birds put Harry Douglas back at punt returner with the game on the line and he offered little more.

Shadow Calls

The Falcons deserved to lose. Period. But of course this will come off as sour grapes and may have not made a difference in the grand scheme, but there were some pretty bad calls in New Orleans, a city known for it’s penultimate honesty (Bountygate’s the same as the Iraq War, right Brees?). There was the first part of the game and the “excessive celebration” that Fox never showed. Antone Smith evidently made a penalty on special teams, also not shown at all on Fox. There was the catch that Harry Douglas made as we all saw on tape, but they couldn’t overturn because the initial call was botched to Hades. Again, the Falcons deserved to lose, but the calls all seemed to go the Hated Saints way.

Chris Ivory vs. Michael Turner

New Orleans Saints running back Chris Ivory (29) carries on a touchdown run in the first half an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Sunday, Nov. 11, 2012. (AP Photo/Bill Feig)

One of Most Pitiful Plays on D EVER! (Bill Feig)

This is not meant to be a hatchet job on Michael Turner. It really isn’t. Turner has been a rock, a stud, and one of the main reasons that the Falcons have been one of the most consistent teams in the National Football League. The argument is always that Turner isn’t very good because the offensive line is so bad. That is an accepted truth with Falcons fans. We all know how poor the OL is. It’s been that way ever since Bill Fralic and Mike Kenn retired.  However, one needs to take one look at Saints running back Chris Ivory and the way he runs the football and how Michael Turner runs. Ivory was an undrafted free agent and ran like a man possessed against the Falcons, running tough, delivering blows, refusing to go down, and generally carrying the ball with force. Flip over to Michael Turner and you see the exact opposite. Turner has never seemed to fit in this offense and evidently Coach Smith is afraid of upsetting Turner because after he seemed frustrated with his lack of carries (and subsequent production), Smith and Co. have been committed to giving him the ball regardless. Again, it’s not a hatchet job on Turner, but the fact is that Turner is the exact opposite of dynamic.

Make Changes or Expect Insanity

Even though the media elite are salivating over the Falcons loss and their emphasis that these are the “same old Falcons,” the coaching staff have control over that. Although they seem to overdramatize the Birds issues on the offensive line and running game, they do have a point. The Falcons had woeful losses last season and in the playoffs because they couldn’t muster a few yards. That point couldn’t be any more true, but it can be broken down into a few areas. Albert Einstein said that “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results” is the definition of insanity. The Falcons have changed only one thing in moving Peter Konz to right guard (only after Garrett Reynolds was injured) on the offensive line from last year’s OT debacle to the hated Saints and Meltdown in the Meadowlands. Why did fans expect anything different? After a supposedly “open competition” in the offseason, the offensive line looked exactly the same. Some were holding onto a new “OL coach and new offensive coordinator” in making all the difference. Please. Same goes for the running back situation.

Atlanta Falcons guard Mike Johnson (79) catches a touchdown pass  in the first half an NFL football game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Sunday, Nov. 11, 2012. (AP Photo/Bill Feig)

At Least Mike Johnson Scored (Bill Feig)

Thomas Dimitroff hasn’t done a great job of drafting offensive linemen or invested hardly anything in the running back corps, but he did draft two potential-laden OL and it took Garrett Reynolds getting injured to get Peter Konz in the lineup. For all the talk of other running backs getting looks, that’s become a distant memory. It’s the Turner show and all others are lucky to get scraps. Jacquizz Rodgers has shown he can run the ball and we all know that Snelling can too. Antone Smith has speed, but is never seen. After seeing the Saints plug in a new offensive lineman at right tackle and bring up their 4th or 5th running back to look fantastic (Ivory), the Falcons seem stuck in their same old, same old. There’s evidently a refusal to make many changes on the Falcons offensive line or in the backfield, so Albert Einstein’s looking pretty correct.

What Happened to the Defense?

The same defense that held a slew of quarterbacks in check and forced Peyton Manning into three interceptions in the first half, looked just as pedestrian as any Falcons defense that’s lined up in recent years. The Falcons produced no pass rush whatsoever, only mustering one sack and never pressuring Brees at all. How many times will defenses allow elite QBs to pick them apart. Great teams and defenses have proven that pressuring the quarterback is the only way to knock them off their game. While it wasn’t quite reminiscent of the Debacle in the Dome seeing Aaron Rodgers pick apart the defense, it wasn’t far off. Not only that, but tackling was as bad as it ever was under Brian Van Gorder. That long TD run by Ivory has to go down as one of the worst defensive meltdown plays in Falcons franchise history and completely jumpstarted a struggling Saints team. After being so creative with his multiple and different looks, Nolan’s defense was a mirror image of it’s failed soft-zone predecessor. Why not try William Moore in some linebacker looks, for instance. The Falcons defense of old was not good, and especially not good against the Saints. The thought was that Mike Nolan was supposed to change all that.

Overrated? Sure………….

Atlanta Falcons head coach Mike Smith reacts while talking with an official in the first half of an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints at Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Sunday, Nov. 11, 2012. (AP Photo/Bill Feig)

C'mon Smitty, It Was Time (Bill Feig)

A word of advice to Falcons faithful would be to tune out the MTV Sports, Entertainment Tonight Media Elite for the next few weeks. They finally got everything they wanted: the Falcons lost, they’re overrated, they should be 1-8 instead of 8-1, the Bountygate Saints are back on top, and it’s the “same old Falcons” as everyone always says. Too bad Mary Hart and Mario Lopez can’t give their opinions on the NFL, football, and those terrible, overrated Falcons.

Bird Cage Brothers Fallout Corps’ Turn

1) Simple Sack – how bad of a loss is this: just a loss or a reason to believe the Falcons are the worst team in the NFL?

2) At what point did you get a bad feeling on the game? How tough was blowing a good start?

3) Is this Michael Turner or Matt Ryan’s team? Are there still handcuffs on Ryan?

4) Please, please help fix this anemic pass rush.

5) Why has the Falcons pass rush remained so terribly poor?

6) How about those Turner playcalls right up the gut?

7) Anyone else at punt returner?

8.) Thoughts on the Mercedez-SuperDome officiating?

9) Please explain the Curious Case of Michael Turner.

10) Has Albert Einstein pegged one Coach Mike Smith?

11) What happened to Mike Nolan and his defense? Yikes

12) Promise yourself a prize if you can ignore the MTV Sports / Entertainment Tonight media-elite-talking-heads-experts for a few weeks………..or maybe ever.

1,221 comments Add your comment

D3

November 11th, 2012
10:41 pm

I know everyone’s winding down for the weekend, but a few thoughts before bed……..

+ — Turner’s done. I’m not sugarcoating anymore. Anyone who knows me, knows that I even advocated for the Falcons to drop him in the off-season, free up a lot of money, and go with Quizz / Snelling / Antone Smith. Would it be a gamble? Sure. But what the hell did we have to lose? I knew when we brought him back that (regardless of what they all said) that Turner would be the main focus of the offense.

+ — I find it very convenient that after Turner b!tches and complains about it being “their team and their offense” that he starts getting his same old 20 plus carries that he always gets. I will not apologize or concede on the “well, he always breaks at least one big run a game.” Really, is that what we’ve come to expect from our $7.5 million RB? I appreciate everything he’s done, but when Malarkey left town, so should Turner in my opinion. Look around the league and you’ll see all these lower drafted (or undrafted) rookies tearing it up in the NFL. Hell, the sAINTS were on their 4th RB and he made Turner look like an old man. A friend said to me today during the game, “the offense seems to grind to a halt when he’s in the game.” Perfectly put.

falcon21

November 11th, 2012
10:41 pm

This should be Matt Ryans team but Mike Smith wants to keep it his team. So at this point the handcuffs are still on. Otherwise we would have won the game.

Tom

November 11th, 2012
10:42 pm

Great article and hit all the points. A tough lose that we saw coming. If you can score 2nd and goal from the one….. You are right the Falcons deserved to win today. The Saints were the better team. Need a running game, to one dimensional and interesting it was brought up about punt returns. Tired of fair catches. We still should win the division and will have the chance to knock the Saints out of the playoffs at home. There are pieces missing still. Fill the gaps Smitty.

Tom

November 11th, 2012
10:43 pm

Sorry, Saints deserved to win, my bad.

Ray

November 11th, 2012
10:44 pm

Ray

November 11th, 2012
10:49 pm

Turner is done don’t get me wrong love what the guy has done, but really and truly it felt as though he was extremely slow today.

Overall though Falcons did okay we really missed Spoon big time today, but Graham seems to always get us same thing for Moore(Saints).

Right now Ray Edwards and Peria Jerry are busts in my eyes and as for Turner show him the door come off season.

Right now Quizz and Snelling should be a one-two punch.

D3

November 11th, 2012
10:51 pm

+ — I really don’t know what the defense needs, but it needs something. Hell, I’ve just given up trying to figure out what this team needs on defense anymore. Sometimes we need a DT, sometimes we need a DE, sometimes we need an LB, sometimes we need a CB. Goodness gracious, do we need a whole new defense? Really, REALLY disappointed in Nolan’s approach today. It may have well been good ol’ Brian Van Softserve’s defense out there. I think we got to Breesbag once for a sack and that’s about it. Again, I really don’t know what we need, but we need something. I still say that a big ol’ boy DT may very well help, but what the hell do I know. It’s hard to rank what we need most on D, because today it seemed we needed everything.

+ — Compare the Saints and their running game to ours. They don’t have the road-grading OL for power football and really not one of the best OLs, but all their running backs (save for Ingram who ran well today) are shifty and can make people miss (Thomas, Ivory). And they were even missing Darren Sproles. I still like Quizz and Snelling, but we need some speed in that backfield and it’s the exact same thing I said a few weeks ago. Antone Smith may not be Walter Payton, but what the hay, can he be worse than Two-Step Turner?

+ — Stephen Nicholas looked pretty bad in coverage out there today. I keep going back and forth on what’s a bigger need: DT or LB. I think that Dent’s going to be alright when it’s all said and done, but even Nicholas looked bad in coverage today. Then again, the defensive tackle situation isn’t any clearer. Vance Walker should be ahead of Peria Jerry for the rest of the year. Jerry, Babs, and Walker are all too much alike in slicing DTs and Peters is the closes we got in terms of an NT, but still think we could use a big ol’ boy.

falcon21

November 11th, 2012
10:53 pm

I’m not really worried about Nolan, he is doing the best he can with what he has to work with. Spoon missed the game and it hurt but it will take Nolan a couple of years to build this Defense.

Wabe

November 11th, 2012
11:04 pm

Final thoughts on today…

I’ve heard this quite a bit, mainly from Saints fans, but, in the grand scheme of things, nothing really changed today beyond 0 in the loss column. Folks might want to act as though we were exposed. But, folks have known for a while now that we struggle to run the football and stop the run. Those were the main culprits of our loss today. When we needed to punch in TD’s a yard or two out, we couldn’t get it in. And the Saints ability to run the football kept our defense off balance all day.

Regarding Michael Turner, I think most folks are starting to take notice of Turner’s slowdown. Deion Sanders echoed it on NFL Network when they showed our highlights. He mentioned how folks ‘may not wanna hear this, but Jaquizz Rodgers should be the starting RB of this team’. Not sure Quizz is the long term answer, but, it’s evident that Turner ain’t cutting it at this point. I’d love to see more of a split amongst everybody on the roster, including A.Smith. At this point, with the run game as anemic as it is, no option should be left off the table.

It’s possible that nothing may change in terms of the standings as well. If the Texans can hold on here, we’ll still be looking at essentially the same playoff picture we were looking at before this loss.

I’m bummed about the loss. But, they happen. 8-1 through 9 games still keeps us atop the NFC through 10 weeks. No reason for folks to be too downed. Some concerns? Absolutely fine. But, in general, we’re still sitting fine. And although I wish this one came against anybody else, having this ‘undefeated’ garbage out of the locker room will be good for this team moving forward.

The schedule gets tougher. A loss next week would be inexcusable. I fully expect to win, and in blowout fashion at that. That Cardinals offense is beyond inept. No offensive line, no run game, no pass game. No reason that shouldn’t be a blowout. After that, it gets tough. Tampa’s playing good football. @ CAR won’t be easy. NOLA again. And then throw in the games out of division vs. Giants and @ Detroit. Bottom line, stay healthy, and continue to work on that run defense and run game. Those are two glaring flaws that we have a handful of games to address.

D3

November 11th, 2012
11:05 pm

+ — Where the hell was William Moore today? I mean, I thought he could really be a weapon for getting to Breesbag and disrupting plays. Why not have Chris Hope in there at SS and let Willy Mo roam around like an LB. Just supremely disappointed in the defense’s approach today. To their credit, they tightened up in the second half, but much of the damage was already done…..28-17.

+ — I’ll keep saying it until it happens. Starting OL should be LT – Holmes, LG – Blalock, C 0 Konz, RG – Clabo, RT – Baker. I mean really, what the hell do we have to lose? That brings up another point that I talked about non-stop this offseason: Todd McClure is showing his age. He’s already light at center as is, but he’s getting blown up and that’s putting even more pressure on Blalock and Konz. Why do we expect anything different from the EXACT same OL from last year.

+ — I’m not really that upset in the end, but I was worried it was going to be a blowout there for minute. They fought back and it was another close game, but we have some serious soul-searching to do if we want to achieve our goals this season. I’m not saying we’re frauds, but we surely didn’t look the part today.

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Wabe

November 11th, 2012
11:14 pm

D3, regarding what the defense lacks…

I’d say it’s on the line. IMO, it’s DT. Our DT’s get absolutely no pressure up the middle. Our speed rushers get around the corners, but QB’s can simply step into a clean pocket. Babs/Peters are both ok. Jerry’s not been what we anticipated.

But, we don’t really have any dominant players on that line aside from Abe. They’re all rotational type peices. Peters is still young, hopefully he can step his play up as his career progresses. But, again, aside from Abe, you don’t really see Pro-Bowl type talent on that line.

Teams like the Giants, Niners, and Bears all have multiple Pro-bowlers on their fronts. The Falcons have adequate players, but our success really depends on the matchups up front. With guys like Peppers, Abe, JPP, Aldon Smith, Justin Smith, the great guys up front, it doesn’t matter whose lining up in front of them, they’ve got the upper hand. With most of our guys [Abe being the exception], it really does boil down to matchups. Some weeks, our DT’s might get penetration. Other weeks, they just don’t. Not because they’re inconsistent, well they are, but it has more to do with the matchups up front. We don’t have too many guys on this line, none really aside from an aging Abe, that’ll have the upper hand week in and week out regardless of whose playing on opposing O-Lines.

Wabe

November 11th, 2012
11:20 pm

I mean, when you look at it, we shouldn’t expect all that much out of some of these guys on the D-Line…

Peters was a 3rd round peice. Vance Walker was what? A 7th rounder? Biermann was a 4th or 5th rounder. Babs and Abe are aging. Jerry’s a 1st rounder, but he hasn’t really panned out.

We’ve all known about the D-Line though. That’s mainly why I was stoked we hired Mike Nolan because his philosphy isn’t as reliant on the greatest of D-Lines.

Ray

November 11th, 2012
11:39 pm

Right now going into this offseason my main things to be focused on.

Cutting M.Turner glad he was here not going to lie he helped build us up during these past 4 years, but he’s finished he’s slowed down and not in a good way.

Helping our D-line honestly this upcoming draft should be exclusive to defensive side of the ball.

D-Franks needs to go bring me Eric Weems darn it lol.

Big Ray

November 11th, 2012
11:40 pm

Wabe

Good posts.

You’re right….D-line is pretty much the same. Walker is a good rotation guy. Peters is really our best guy now because Babs is aging…but as I cautioned earlier…Peters is NOT anywhere close to 100%, which means he’s nothing close to what he was the last two years – a very solid player and a legit starter.

Jerry is a waste of a first round draft pick…hindsight being 20-20 and all that, but I’ll make the claim anyway because I wanted Ziggy Hood or Clay Matthews or some damn body besides Jerry at the time, LOL.

I look forward to the development of Travian Robertson and hope it goes way better than it has with Jerry or guys like Trey Lewis.

Big Ray

November 11th, 2012
11:46 pm

In the meantime, we’re gonna have to draft at DT. As far as I’m concerned, Babs is rotational…a borderline starter mostly because we don’t have a better guy right now. Peters probably won’t be “right” for the rest of the season if I had to guess. Maybe by week 12 he’ll be close to maybe….90%? One hopes…

Walker…again, a big body and good rotation guy. Babs has come back down to “ok” but still makes some plays some days. Problem is he’s an undertackle…a penetration guy. He can’t do his job when he doesn’t have help next to him. Today, he had no help.

I’m wondering if we shouldn’t have gone with the “Big three tackle” alignment.

Not having Weatherspoon out there hurt more than I think we’d like to really know. He’s the defensive QB out there. He’s fiery. He makes plays all over the place. He has swagger. He can play the pass or the run.

Because of his absence, Graham had an easier day than he should have. Due to the Saints passing attack, we couldn’t even assign Willy Mo to Graham often enough. Because there were other guys to deal with like Lance Moore and Devery Henderson.

dbird1

November 11th, 2012
11:46 pm

8-1 is better than 4-5 last i checked. taints can go to sleep feeling good tonight. we are still on top of the nfc….period. facons vs taints and refs. holds all across the taints o line all feekn night. enjoy it d- bags.

Big Ray

November 11th, 2012
11:47 pm

Funny how all the talking heads are now seeing with Turner what fans were seeing months ago….

All some folks could see were all the thousand yard plus rushing seasons. They couldn’t see that this was OVER.

Big Ray

November 11th, 2012
11:48 pm

I do look forward to revenge in the Georgia Dome.

Ah well. Time to get ready for the Cardinals. They won’t be an easy out, but we shouldn’t lose to them either.

Big Ray

November 11th, 2012
11:59 pm

In other news ….

The world-beating Giants led by the uber-elite Eli Manning lost to the Bengals. Badly. By three TDs. Yep…Eli threw 2 INTs, no TDs. But you won’t hear much about that, I bet….Oh and the Bengals are another 4-5 team hoping to limp into the playoffs. 4-5 teams are dangerous when you’re a winning team…

I realize that San Diego has major issues and Norv Turner is an idiot of global proportions…the kind that I hope Mike Smith never turns out to be (but he won’t…Blank would not tolerate that).

But damn….Tampa Bay is becoming for real. Just sayin’.

Few things amuse me like Carolina totin’ a whoopin’ though. Courtesy of Peyton and his Broncos…whom the media is all over (when they can get away from Eli’s crotch, that is).

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Box

November 12th, 2012
1:18 am

Turner’s best production came within a different offensive scheme where he had a guy named Ovie leading the way on many plays. This just shows that this new scheme needs a different style of RB or a few more two back sets for short yardage plays. Linemen do not have the vision or speed to line up in the backfield and lead block effectively. Turner isn’t going to make it on a 1 yard conversion up the middle by himself. And why do we not try more plays running to the edge instead of up the middle because they stack the box? For all of our speed at WR, an outside to inside WR motion by Julio to flare around for a pitch for a race to the pylon seems a no brainer. We only needed 1 yard, not big play yardage. With a motion to gain a head of steam, maybe one guy catches him, and the beast fights his way into the end zone.

BobbyDawg

November 12th, 2012
1:46 am

On several running plays I couldn’t tell if Matty Ice handed the ball off to Turner or it was one of their D guys handing it off. I know that’s exagerating but our O line stunk up the place, and their D line had by far their best game all year. You can’t overpower a team without power. This is the same team that was 8-0. Is this failure due to COACHING? On one play that I remember above all they had the box stacked with 8 guys and Turner still got the ball and just kind of fell into the pile of bodies in front of him. I thought MR2 could audible at the line and change the play if he sees a trap. I gotta get over it. GO FALCONS !

dheadms

November 12th, 2012
2:00 am

Shout out to all you civil Falcons fans. I was in the Dome today. watched it all with joy as I am a Who Dat. Kudos to the Falcons. I am proud of their record. good job. I have totally hated the bias and disgust spewed over the Saints recent troubles. We have not deserved the hate. I hope what was settled tonight is.. we are both quality teams. win or lose we are brothers. today was a great day for me, not so great for you, but may the best win. We meet again soon. The best team will win that one too.
With sincerity, good luck to you. What I am relieved about is that this game will shut up the ignorant haters, or shut up at least the ones who are smart enough to know they are ignorant.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
5:15 am

Frauds don’t start the season 8-0, you raving lunatic.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
5:24 am

http://espn.go.com/blog/nfcsouth/post/_/id/41618/saints-bring-falcons-down-to-earth

Pat Yasinkas. The biased sports writer, the closet Saints fan who forgot to close the closet door….

Brutal

November 12th, 2012
5:42 am

I currently live in Atlanta but I am from Houston,so I have no choice but to watch the Falcons game, even though I’m a texans fan ….

I feel like you all are overreacting. The falcons had alot of key players out which hurt them in the long run. Falcons D stopped the Saints pretty much the entire 2nd quarter which let the falcons come back from trailing 2 scores.

A loss brings a team into reality. My texans lost and the next week came back to dominate. It’s not the end of the world….seriously.

My Texans vs Falcons SB pick is still looking pretty good

Wings

November 12th, 2012
7:24 am

And it had to be a memorable, drama-filled game that left the Falcons frustrated by the 1 meager yard they could not get to take a lead inside the final 2 minutes of a 31-27 loss Sunday.

”It’s very frustrating,” said Falcons coach Mike Smith, who is 2-7 against the Saints and 49-15 against the rest of the NFL in his four-plus regular seasons as Atlanta coach. ”We were close. … This will be something we will learn from.”

You will? Hasn’t this happened before in other New Orleans games? I’m frustrated that you continue to run Michael Turner in these one yard situations.

Wings

November 12th, 2012
7:36 am

JB Falcon – “MB. don’t take this personally but could you at least put the first letter in God’s name as a capital “G”? There’s alot of Christians on here.”

You are the best.

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Wabe

November 12th, 2012
8:09 am

Brutal,

Good post. Sometime, perspective goes out the window with some of us fans. It’s a knee-jerk type league. A week to week type thing. Whose up, whose down. Also, I think we have a tendancy to micro-analyze things like no other.

But, with that said, you’re right. I don’t think anybody’s throwing in the towel. Just simply pointing to some trends that the Falcons have to debunk as the season progresses. Most folks didn’t wanna acknowledge the Falcons when we were undefeated and only pointed to postseason success/failures. Despite being the lone undefeated team in the league, folks simply chalked it up to, “What will they do in the playoffs…that’s all that matters…” So now, after suffering our first loss, I don’t think the coversation should really change. Folks have been talking about postseason play with this squad and claiming that’s all that matters [and to an extent, that's true]. So, this loss doesn’t really do anything to the Falcons in the grand scheme of things. Still atop the NFC. Still positioned to get that 1st round bye. We didn’t really walk out of the Superdome yesterday with too many more questions than we already had [run defense? run offense?]. We’ll see how it plays out come playoff time.

Stumpknocker

November 12th, 2012
8:10 am

Turner is long past his prime, that’s for sure…………but what happened to the shifting and stunting defense that looked so good against the Broncos?

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
8:23 am

Good morning Cage Family…

First, a deeply sincere thank you from the TeePee family for all the kind words, thoughts, prayers, text messages, and emails over the last month. Your calm resolve helped immensely in dealing with a very difficult time. Time was needed to recover, reflect, and move forward. I thank each of you more than you can ever imagine.

D3

November 12th, 2012
8:24 am

SW — Welcome back my brother. You’ve been sorely missed and we all hope / are glad that all is well with you my friend.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
8:27 am

Now, it has been a LONG, LONG time since I have been able to focus on anything football related. But the time is now to get back into my grove. And that begins right now…so sit back and let’s see if I still have my mojo.

Going to take you back a little bit it I may. I told you that there has been an ongoing disconnect with the Atlanta Falcons. I have stated for the longest that there is something, something I can not put my finger on, but trust me, it is STILL there, about this team. This team STILL lacks a killer instinct on the defensive side of the ball and is almost laughable at times. I do not want to hear all the calls about the Giants, the 49ers, etc. and their defensive issues. I simply do not give a damned. What I care about is the Atlanta Falcons. And people, things are not getting better on the defensive side of the football team.

Wings

November 12th, 2012
8:30 am

D3 – I think this post of yours is the best one ever. I loved your “tongue and cheek” comparisons (time to bake a cake and do his taxes; living on borrowed time with their comebacks; Mary Hart and Mario Lopez; etc). I was so worn out after watching the game that I went to sleep sitting up and never saw one play of the night game. Good reading this morning.

And of course, you put the focus on the biggest problem that this team has. I have been an advocate of benching/cutting Turner for more than just last season. I listed the negative yards from each game even going back to important games from previous years. Even when Ovie was his personal blocker in the important games lost. Michael Turner must be removed from the first team running back slot for this team to play at its potential.

Smitty must remove some of his influence from the the game plans. If we believe Smitty is responsible for Turner’s role, then we have to assume Smitty has his hands in the defensive pie. I really believe he gave direction to Mike Nolan regarding how to structure the defense against NO. It failed!!! Nolan made adjustments at half time that improved the performance some what.

Also, I am not saying anything regarding the offensive line until there is a new running back in place to adequately make judgements. The OL can pass block reasonably well so why can’t the OL run block better. I think a lot of it is because of the relic RB and plays.

Mike Smith has the traits of Marty Schottenheimer, and Marty never won the big game. I am so afraid the talent on the Falcons team will remain untapped and the Super Bowl will pass us by too.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
8:30 am

Sure, we are a flashy-based, Sports Center seeking defense. Samuel make one play for each three he gives up. You know how I feel about Robinson, a free safety faking the funk as a cornerback. I love William Moore but what in the hell is he doing in coverage the last few weeks. And the linebackers could not cover in pass defense if I threw a damned quilt over their collective butts!!

Pressure..what damned pressure!! I get more force out of my garden hose than the Falcons have shown in a pass rush this season. And it is getting to be rather silly.

Edge Team

November 12th, 2012
8:31 am

It’s simple. This team is a team that lives and dies on the edge on both sides of the ball. Speed and ability on the offensive side of the ball is 3 guys named Ryan White, Gonzalez and Jones and it will all live and die in their hands week after week. Unless, you talk about a pick 6 against a team like the Raiders to save your bacon (but again an edge player). The Falcons chose to ignore the Core, so have next to zero depth in the positions in the middle of the field so get exposed easily when one guy goes down. In other words they have to 100% healthy to be mediocre and once the long season takes its toll ,, the destination is south of Mediocreville. They have enough to pull out a win on any given Sunday, but not having a running game is going to ultimately do them in come playoff time. They keep pushing the running game b/c they have fooled themselves into believing they have one when they look back at certain games (most recently Cowboys who have a good to great D). That success is not pound the ball up the middle football, but rather misdirection or “fooled ya” successs in playcalling. When it is predictable on 1st down and they get stuffed they are predictably trying to keep enough of the D in the box to open up passing game, yeah we get that and that is all necessary and such b/c you can’t throw on every down ,,, the problem is when they call up those plays, like yesterday in a crucial 3rd down at then goal line. Did they really think that was going to work? To the blog post, it absolutely miffs me how we never picked up an Ivory versus thinking we will soley rely on Turner w/ Jacquizz as a sub. Jacquizz is at best a screen pass back who needs to get in open to be effective and has such great cutting ability that I like him in that role. Bottomline that will haunt them come the playoffs is that you can’t ignore the core… and ignoring the core also includes sorry draft results with the likes of Jerry and Baker, etc. TD needs someone else doing his scouting of OL and DL talent.

Edge Team

November 12th, 2012
8:31 am

Sorry, bad math on it being 4 guys!!

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
8:35 am

Many, myself included, were shocked at the hiring of DK as the offensive coordinator. However, it is clear that DK knows how to use the weapons that he has been given on the offensive side of the ball. He is opening up the passing attack, the Falcons are increasing vertical, the running backs are very active in the passing game, and we move the ball very well. Our rushing attack is a struggle (and there were those of us that called for the drafting/FA signing of a RB). No one has defended MT33 more than I but it is official…dude simply does not have it. It also does not help him that the OL is once again is a state of flux.

Tell me…why can we not be effective at both PASS and RUSH blocking? Konz and Blalock are doing very good things at the guard position but the center and tackles STILL are areas of concern.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
8:42 am

The defense is filled with overpriced, underachieving personnel. I have often compared it to the Eagles defense. Those comparisons were not a reach if you ask me. When it matters the most, with a QB that is cold blooded, the Falcons can not stop the pass. When faced with a team that is tough with its rushing attack, the interior of the Falcons defense is laughable.

This team is 8-1 but if you HAVE watched the action closely over the last month, this has been coming. This exposure has been building since the Carolina game. And I have a new flash for you; this team had better get it together QUICKLY on defense or it is going to be a tough time in the off season.

What has eluded the Falcons is the ability to win in the hostile environment or show evidence of the clutch gene. Offensively, we are among the best in the league. Rodgers is a emerging talent. MT33 is on the decline and will have to be replaced in 2013. The defensive front is in need of a MAJOR overhaul as it simply is not capable of getting it done.

Lady luck is fine for winning some game but it will not carry you to a Lombardi trophy. And there is no way, none, that you are going to convince me that this defense is championship caliber.

It lacks focus and discipline too often. Fundamentals are ragged too damned often. Blown coverage and missed tackles are common place. And it sucks!! I truly sucks!!

snacktastic

November 12th, 2012
8:46 am

SW! Good to see you back. Hope you’re doing well.

All I have to say is this: You earn a lot of good will going 8-0. So much so that I would have been able to accept a hard-fought loss…as long as it wasn’t against the Saints.

And yet who do they lose to? The Saints.

I’m still sold on this team. 15-1 is within reach, as is an NFC Championship, at least. But now I’m back to the default of rooting for them just because they’re “my team”. I’ll need to see some concrete improvement, and maybe a bit of change, before I can get excited again.

And with that, I think I’ll take D3’s suggestion and avoid the news this week. We had better stomp Arizona into the ground on Sunday.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 12th, 2012
8:47 am

Good to see you back in here SW.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
8:49 am

Going to give a little love to a guy that I have roasted in the past. Akeem Dent had some great plays yesterday. He was effective in rushing defense, leaving a lot to be desired in the pass coverage area. He looked a lot like what we had in Lofton in years past.

Speaking of linebackers, the Falcons need to draft some and do it SOON. Nicholas is slipping and Pete is past his prime. Biermann could be an element of surprise but the three coordinator approach we have on defense can not seem to figure out where to use him.

Pass rush? What rush? Has anyone see Abraham or Edwards lately? Is Sidbury STILL in the witness protection plan? I mean damned….

Mike Franklin

November 12th, 2012
8:52 am

Monday morning QB’ing? Yup, that’s what a fan does because that’s what the desk jockeys will be doing at all the sports networks.

Similar to the Texas A&M vs. Alabama game in college, the Falcons and Saints affair displayed one team out-playing itself with another giving less than they could have. The outcome was an upset and one that didn’t have to happen.

For the next week, the sports media will be howling about how the Falcons are not as good as their record and the Saints fans will be ripping and clawing at every Falcons board on the web. This is the price the fans will pay for this loss.

The team itself has some soul searching to do… a lot of it.

Chop Buster

November 12th, 2012
8:53 am

Simple Sack – how bad of a loss is this: just a loss or a reason to believe the Falcons are the worst team in the NFL? It’s one loss, but it was to the Aints. This team has Smitty’s number because he goes into scared mode anytime he plays them. This team looked exactly like the same Falcons teams with Mularkey and BVG. The common denominator is Smitty. His ultra conservative nature is killing this team ability to dominate.

At what point did you get a bad feeling on the game? Um, the phantom calls started. The Aints began getting in our players heads and the moment the tackling started. How tough was blowing a good start? This is a team that still does not know how to keep their foot on the pedal on both sides of the ball. I feel like the defense is a true patchwork of players and needs to be blown up after this year.

Is this Michael Turner or Matt Ryan’s team? Matt’s team of course. That’s why he’s the franchise QB. Turner is a has been and has always been a RB that needed gaping holes and a FB leading him. Are there still handcuffs on Ryan? Of course there is. The minute you see the offense go from aggressive to handing off to Turner, you know whose hand was in that.

Please, please help fix this anemic pass rush. Again, we never built the defensive line the right way like they did in say Tampa. We keep bringing in backup level players and trying to make them starting pass rushers. All of them are done…including Abe. It’s pathetic.

Why has the Falcons pass rush remained so terribly poor? Because of what I just said…not drafting/signing the right FA AND the infamous Falcon filter. Wonder how that will effect Nolan’s picks this year.

How about those Turner play calls right up the gut? A wasted play. How about run him off tackle, pitch him the ball on the move, something other than running him into a pile.

Anyone else at punt returner? Keep playing Harry Douglas. I read somewhere that Smitty has been directing these guys to just catch the ball, because he’s not concerned with field position and more concern with a possible turnover. If this is true, again this man is the epitome of conservatism.

Thoughts on the Mercedes Super Dome officiating? Like we always say…we have to play against the Aints and the referees anytime we play this team. I get very frustrated watching the poorly officiated games that are one-sided. Their players hang all over our receivers and they don’t get one call–except on the obvious one where Roddy was almost beheaded.

Please explain the Curious Case of Michael Turner. Poor footwork, slow to the hole, runs with no power. That sums him up in a nutshell. With his lower body power he should literally be carrying guys four to five yards after contact. Instead he stops his feet and goes to the ground.

Has Albert Einstein pegged one Coach Mike Smith? Yes he has. Smitty is a stubborn control freak. It’s obvious he wants to still keep a hand in calling plays on both sides of the game.

What happened to Mike Nolan and his defense? It’s called Mike Smith. That defense yesterday looked exactly like the same scared zone defense that BVG had always called. Now it makes me wonder if BVG was actually calling so much zone and Smitty not the one.

The media is always going to support a winner. No make that a dominant winner who convincingly beats teams. That’s why they love the 49ers, Bears, Giants, etc. because they all have shown they can dominate and win “playoff games”. Until the Falcons get game changers on the defense and shut teams down they will always be suspect. Even in the fans minds.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
8:55 am

Seminole W.

Glad to see you back… too bad it’s after a loss, go figure.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
8:55 am

Snack, this is an OFFENSIVELY good football team. But this team and its defensive approach is not ready to take the next step. Again, yesterday’s loss has been four weeks in the making. Defensively, from week to week, we are torched against the pass too often and are becoming more and more suspect against the run.

Say what we may about the pathetic BVG but damned, at least we were respectable against the run. With the HIGH priced, SPECIFICALLY acquired secondary members we have, I am not buying the failure, the ABSOLUTE failure of this secondary to be a greater presence than what they are.

It’s garbage too damned often. It really is. Especially when you are looking at a veteran presence on that side of the ball. We have no rookies in the secondary….it is totally a joke too often.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
8:58 am

Wabe

I have to say, as usually, your post is probably the only objective on in here that isn’t overflowing with emotions. Great stuff.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
8:59 am

Kudos to snacktastic, as well.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
9:03 am

What defensive player for the Falcons do you see striking fear in the hearts of the opposition? What defensive player for the Falcons gets any SERIOUS consideration as a threat? I thought so…none.

Spoon is up and coming but I need my man to stay on the field for a full season. But can you tell me that there is another Falcons defender that strikes fear among league offensive coordinators and QBs. Not!!

Sis-Boom-Bah Humbug

November 12th, 2012
9:10 am

For several years, it was evident that the Falcons needed coaching changes. At long last, the coordinators were changed & the results have been immediate & very successful. Other same-old/same-old problems continue to exist, however, and once again attempts to fix some of them are at best slow in coming. As was previously the case, the fans are clearly Not Overreacting in pointing out what are major & unaddressed problems with the Falcons. Do they have to go ignominiously One-and-Out in the playoffs yet again before corrective actions are even attempted?

That won’t do if only because the window of opportunity won’t stay open indefinitely. And the competition WILL be changing.

Why is there such irrational resistance to change on the Falcon’s part? Quite simply, I believe the reason is pathological stubbornness on Mike Smith’s part.

Clearly, the elephant in the room here is Michael “Refrigerator” Turner. As a team member, he should (privately) step up & acknowledge that his terminal incapacities are severely handicapping the Falcons. In any case, he should be discreetly benched (or saved for a Jaguars game). No more bitching & no more excuses!!! After all, when he is on the field nowadays, it is like 10-against-12 players in favor of the opposition, or else spotting the other team 7 or 10 points per game. And then there is the obscene amount of money he is paid.

If benching Turner doesn’t happen immediately, the Falcons management needs to sit Mike Smith down & explain the obvious realities to him. This is not a change-for-change’s-sake situation or mere experimentation. It is an imperative & long overdue correction of a flagrant/persistent/debilitating problem. Corrective actions need to be taken NOW in order to get reorganized BEFORE the playoffs.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
9:12 am

BL,

Wabes comments are rock solid and I appreciate them.

And yes, my brother, the emotions are running high in the TeePee as I get back into the fold. Both my beloved teams, my Falcons and Seminoles, have flirted with danger too damned often this season. I can understand if you were facing superior competition but both of my teams easily have been the best team on the field EACH week they have played thus far this season. And to be easing by just gets old.

There is too much damned talent on both of these squads to be squeeking by. I understand and do respect that it happens at times but to be a repeat occurrence is just more than I am willing to accept this season.

So, my friend, I vent. This past weekend, both team could not rush the ball worth a damned against defenses that had been horrid against the rush all season long. And it cost one team and nearly tooki down the season of another.

There has to be an element of pride to what a team takes onto the field. And, at least in my point of view, just getting by does that pride an injustice.

darrell starks

November 12th, 2012
9:26 am

DT and middle LB is becoming a big issue now, teams are running straight up the gut on the Falcons this season, coaches has to be address this problem.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!

darrell starks

November 12th, 2012
9:31 am

Dunta continue to play 15yards of his Man, im very surprise to see this special in a Mike Nolan defensive scheme, Dunta has to play bumb and run on his side, he is to physical to continue playing so far of his man, if you have slide a safety over top help then do so, come palyoffs this will be expose in a big way.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
9:32 am

D3 / Snack / Truth / BL

Thanks, my brothers. It feels good to be back.

Mike, you nailed it. There is an URGENT need for some soul searching. This schedule just got a little more interesting going down the home stretch.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
9:33 am

D Starks, come on brother. Dunta Robinson out of position? Giving up a play? Are you REALLY surprised?

darrell starks

November 12th, 2012
9:40 am

Im done with Dent this season, he is not ready for big boy football, Peterson is just to old.

Kroy must move to LB, and Robert James has to play now, this LB core is just not getting the job done.

KROY, NICHOLAS, ROBERT

Should be starting until Spoon come back.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
9:56 am

Darrell Starks,

What needs to happen is that the Falcons need to move to a 3-4 defense ASAP after season’s completion, use FA and the draft to facilitate that transition and fully implement the ZBS.

Truth Hurts

Could not agree with you more. RW84 has toned it down a little bit but Samuel, like Robinson, does not impress me. I am not one for the flashy plays that come once a three or four games; I want a consistent effort. And Falcon cornerbacks do not give me that.

D3

November 12th, 2012
9:58 am

The Orkin man is on patrol today and this week, have no fear.

darrell starks

November 12th, 2012
10:05 am

DT is and major issue also, but i do like the 3man DT on the front line.

Travian Robertson need to be playing ASAP he is the biggest and maybe the strongest DT on the team.

DL STARTERS

BAB, TRAVIAN, PETERSON, ABRAHAM

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!

darrell starks

November 12th, 2012
10:11 am

DEFENSIVE STARTER

BAB, TRAVIAN, PETERSON, ABRAHAM

KROY, NICHOLAS, ROBERT

DUNTA, DECOUD, MOORE, SAMUEL

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
10:14 am

I’ll keep saying it until it happens. Starting OL should be LT – Holmes, LG – Blalock, C 0 Konz, RG – Clabo, RT – Baker. I mean really, what the hell do we have to lose?

Going to have to respectfully disagree with this analysis. What do we have to lose?

I can think of one very critical player whose blind side needs protecting. Sure, Baker gets bulldozed from time to time, but I can’t remember a really bad blindside shot Ryan has taken all season. You let a raw rookie miss one single assignment and our season is done, especially with the concussion awareness and policies.

You put guys like that in to see what they can do when your out of it, or to get them experience for next year, not as the final strategic piece to push you through the playoffs into the Superbowl.

Finally, it is my understanding that Holmes has pass blocking tools, but his run blocking is suspect, and that is where our problems on the line really lie. We put up over 400 yards in the air, in spite not having an ounce of run support.

Smitty gets Johnson, Hawley, and an array of TEs on the field in situations where we might need a push, the fact that Holmes has not even stepped foot on it says he ain’t ready to take over the starting LT on a SB contender.

Being a Falcon fan, I know the “what do we have to lose” mentality is ingrained in us over 40 years of having nothing to lose. But when you are 8-1, leading the entire NFC, you have something to lose. Every team in the NFL would love to be as desperate as we are.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
10:15 am

Personally, I don’t see DT as our problem. The key to this loss was multiple – but, after Ryan brought us down the field and we got stuck at the 2, the Turner run, and then the stupid cute play with Mike Johnson flaring out to the right – which is also where Tony G ended up – was horrible play calling. then, MR2 still had a chance and did not throw an optimal pass to RW84. Now, whatever we did at half time – whether it was Nolan throwing out HC MS’s imposed game plan or not, was successful. We pretty much stuffed the Aints. Now, one thing that did bug the crap out of me: our last possession of the 1st half – we had ample opportunity to AT LEAST get the ball into FG range – but, we simply ran out the clock – that is quintessential Smitty Ball – far too conservative. AGAIN – I watched Mike Turner get the hand off, have a NO line men blow through our line, hit the ground, AND STILL TACKLE THAT TURD. Turner has ZERO lateral movement, and apparently crappy vision. I’d seriously prefer running Snelling. For those pollyannaists – we have been winning again against lower tier teams. Our only playoff win was against Denver. The Saints are coming on – WE COULD HAVE KNOCKED them out of the playoffs. Our failure means they are still in the hunt. Tampa is now OVER 500. We have our work cut out for us. I hope Smitty does not treat this season like he does a game – coast the last half/quarter because he has a big lead.

Wings

November 12th, 2012
10:15 am

Good to have you back SW. We need your energy.

Yes Sis-Boom-Bah Humbug – “or saved for a Jaguars game”

Chop Buster I read your similar post yesterday on previous blog. It was well said re Smith but today’s is refined.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
10:17 am

MB – have you been watching a Smitty coached team? HE NEVER PUTS HIS ROOKIES IN – even in junk time to get experience – it is one aspect of Smitty Ball which is further called the Falcons Apprenticeship Program. Smitty does NOT use a rookie unless FORCED TO.

darrell starks

November 12th, 2012
10:17 am

SeminoleWarrior, Kroy starting at OLB has it’s advantage, this will allow Kroy to blitz more up the middle or outside unprotected or drop back into coverage, when Spoon comeback i like the idea of having Kroy and Spoon being the aggressive players up front blitzing more.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
10:19 am

Matty – the Falcons DO NOT NEED FING RUN SUPPORT. WE DO NOT NEED IT. When we try to lean – unnecessarily – and i would say INEPTLY – on the run, we lose yards or simply WASTE plays. Smitty has some severe tendencies -which teams we play repeatedly are good at exploiting.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
10:19 am

Really, we all know our O line needs push. If Holmes we pushing people around in drills, you don’t think Smitty, Welcome, and Ryan would look at each other and go, hmmm?

I say we are not desperate, but we are desperate to find a solution to our short yardage issues. We need a pile pusher fall forward kind of guy. Maybe Quizz can find a mouse hole for a yard,but he is more a change of pace, gimmick back. We just don’t have what we need on our roster.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:20 am

Nice points, Matty Bicep. Konz is in the mix; what is the latest on Mr. Holmes. Said it then, will say it again. I think dude was a hell of a reach…..

Hawley is in the mix as he will take over the center duties next season. Totally agree with you on the Baker situation; another reason why I advocate the ZBS. It does not rely on individual point of attack rather places a premium on blocking in a window.

From what I see, the Falcons OL has considerable mobility and thus, the ZBS would work well. Why would you bring in a ZBS specialist to coach the OL if you have no intention on fully implementing it?

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
10:20 am

The fear here is that, once again, it has all been a smoke screen. If we collapse against teams in our own division, the smoke screen “pretenders” clarion call we get very loud.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:26 am

“MB – have you been watching a Smitty coached team? HE NEVER PUTS HIS ROOKIES IN – even in junk time to get experience – it is one aspect of Smitty Ball which is further called the Falcons Apprenticeship Program. Smitty does NOT use a rookie unless FORCED TO.” – Paddy O

This has got to change if we are ever going to get over the hump and fully take advantage of the process. Otherwise, trade the damned picks!!

Wings

November 12th, 2012
10:30 am

scoots – go somewhere else. The orkin man will take care of you.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:30 am

Paddy O, the Branch is not worried about the collapse. They are too damned busy trying to get that new stadium. $300 million from the state, joint private/public financing after that. Can you say PSLs?
If so, so long to my time as a season ticket holder. I refuse to have my tax dollars help pay for the stadium, then I have to pay a fee (a LARGE one at that) for the right to then pay AGAIN for my tickets.

Not going to do it; can’t do it. Will keep my money in my other ticket package in Tallahassee.

Wings

November 12th, 2012
10:31 am

Paddy 0 – you are right. The aint’s could beat us twice and so could the bucs.

Wabe

November 12th, 2012
10:33 am

SW,

Good to see you back in here. Hope all is well with you bro.

BL,

I appreciate the shout out. I try to maintain some type of objectivity, despite it all probably going out the window when we’re in the heat of the moment. But, objectively speaking, I can see where SW is coming from. I don’t completely agree with his take on the defense, but I definitely see what he’s getting at. There really is a level of inconsistency with this group. I do think some of it has a lot to do with how these guys are being coached up. The run defense, for instance, is an area where I just think we’re not maintaining sound gap discipline paired with bad tackling. These are some of the same faces we’ve been had for years, so to see them struggle so bad tackling makes me think they’re not working on it as much as they need to. But, SW is dead on when he’s talking about ‘players who strike fear’. The Falcons really don’t have anybody of that caliber. They have a bunch of high-priced FA acquisitions that haven’t lived up [Dunta, Ray Edwards]. Other than Abe and Asante Samuel [whose not even really a member of the 'core'], I don’t think there’s a single player on this defense that’s really nationally recognized.

We don’t have a Clay Matthews, or JJ Watt, or Aldon Smith, or Patrick Willis, or Charles Tillman, or Brian Urlacher, or Lance Briggs, or Julius Peppers, or JPP, Umenyiora, Tuck. Those teams have greats. We have guys that are great ’scrappers’. But, a lot of it has to do with how the football teams are built. The Falcons will never be a defense that stands up to the likes of the Bears or Niners, nor will those offenses ever live up to what we have. They invested in defense. We’ve invested in our offense.

Regardless, this team, as has been said numerous times, will go as far as Matt Ryan and the offense takes them. Despite the horrid play for most of the game yesterday by the defense, it doesn’t excuse what our offense failed to do with the opportunities we had. The Samuel pick set us up with great field position, but resulted in 3 points. The drive where we threw the bomb to Julio Jones, we were set up with 1st and goal, and it resulted in 3 points. The final drive of the game, we had 1st and goal again, 4 opportunities to get it in, and it resulted in 0 points. That can’t happen. Not against the worst defense in the league. And, it’s not just one game, it’s been happening quite frequently for the Birds. Against Dallas, we rack up 450 yards of offense, but only score one TD. We attempted what, 5 to 6 FG’s. Can’t do that. Gotta capitalize.

They’ll go as far as the offense takes them. The defense, IMO, isn’t one with studs everywhere like other teams might have, but are good enough to get us where we wanna be. And folks will knock Nolan [and some criticism might be deserved], but being a DC became increasingly difficult yesterday when the Saints running game got going. Not only are you responsible for slowing down one of the league’s best QB’s, but now he has a running game which opens up the playaction game as well. Just too many facets available to them at that point for the defense to really make much headway.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:35 am

Wings, do not give him the satisfaction.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
10:36 am

Alright, before I answer these questions… let me just say I am trying to look at this objectively and not with emotion. I do not care that it was the Saints that we lost to, ’cause even though I have no love towards that organization, they are still just another NFL team–a NFL team with a potent offense.

1) Simple Sack – how bad of a loss is this: just a loss or a reason to believe the Falcons are the worst team in the NFL?

Just a loss. Any thoughts past this is beyond knee-jerk. I argue that the loss being handed by our rivals will be even more helpful in the development of this team by the end of the year. Guess what? We are nine games into the season. This isn’t the playoffs. Things can be worked on and adjusted.

2) At what point did you get a bad feeling on the game? How tough was blowing a good start?
Never had a bad feeling. This team is different. My posts speak for themselves. When everyone was throwing the towel after the first half, I was still believing in the Falcons. They fought back, and they adjusted well.

3) Is this Michael Turner or Matt Ryan’s team? Are there still handcuffs on Ryan?

It’s Matt Ryan’s team. They need to get rid of the power run game period. They need to start running from the shotgun. Our offensive line cannot get push at all. It’s time to adjust. Period.

4) Please, please help fix this anemic pass rush.

What do you expect with three tackles? No Spoon? Poor Tackling?

5) Why has the Falcons pass rush remained so terribly poor?

It has been decent this year, actually. Yet, we need to get out of our heads that our front four will get to the QB consistently. We need to zone blitz and tire out the oline. Problem was, we couldn’t stop the run due to poor tackling, so it took the defense out of its groove.

6) How about those Turner playcalls right up the gut?

Can’t defend Mike Smith anymore on this. I really do not think DK is the one behind those, especially goal line stands where MS overruled MM last year a couple times with it to put in Burner.

7) Anyone else at punt returner?

I agree so much with this… At least put in Kevin K.

8.) Thoughts on the Mercedez-SuperDome officiating?

As always, biased and poor. But, still, the Falcons beat themselves more.

9) Please explain the Curious Case of Michael Turner.

Offensive line is getting no push and he cannot cut well. That’s it.

10) Has Albert Einstein pegged one Coach Mike Smith?

11) What happened to Mike Nolan and his defense? Yikes

People are too angry to see the half time adjustments. The Saints only scored 10 the second half…
First half was bad tackling. It has nothing to do with Mike Nolan. The players need to look long and hard into the mirror.

12) Promise yourself a prize if you can ignore the MTV Sports / Entertainment Tonight media-elite-talking-heads-experts for a few weeks………..or maybe ever.

Only person to call this team overrated after the loss was Pat Y. (go figure). Most of the media that I have seen so far said Atlanta gave the game away. They had the chances…. Roddy was right, for once.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:38 am

Wabe @ 10:33

Well stated, my brother.

Invested in our offense. Speak that truth!! And it will be the offense that brings us any true hope of that Lombardi celebration.

For I do not see where there is the focus or discipline in this defensive unit to get it done.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
10:41 am

“The fear here is that, once again, it has all been a smoke screen. If we collapse against teams in our own division, the smoke screen “pretenders” clarion call we get very loud.”

The Falcons didn’t get blown out like the previous years. They fought back and never gave up. They just didn’t execute. This is not a smoke screen. But, I agree, if they keep making mistakes like this… it will get loud.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:42 am

BL,

They did give it away…but the way we have been giving wins away over the Smith regime continues to be the same. Poor execution, questionable play calls, overrulling competent coaches at the wrong times, etc.

I repeat. The Falcons are an immensely talented, offensive football team with a few issues that need to be addressed. But defensively, I am at the end of my rope. Until there is a consistent, determined effort, I can not trust these guys to get it done on defense.

Wings

November 12th, 2012
10:54 am

SW you are correct the Falcons gave it away. Many don’t like RWhite’s talking but I have found he is pretty much the best barometer of how the team is playing. He is not afraid to tell the facts. Whether he should or not is another story.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
10:55 am

“I repeat. The Falcons are an immensely talented, offensive football team with a few issues that need to be addressed. But defensively, I am at the end of my rope. Until there is a consistent, determined effort, I can not trust these guys to get it done on defense.”

Again, knee jerk. They got it done versus the Eagles, they got it done versus the Cowboys, they got it done versus the Broncos. Stop looking at ONE GAME as the determining factor. Stop overreacting with your emotions an understand that the issues of the Falcons were on their tackling/being too confident. They got smacked in the mouth and adjusted in the second half. The Saints only scored ten points in the 3rd and 4th quarter combined!

Again, I am not saying that the defense does not have issues, but I feel they are way better than the effort they gave in the first half. They were too arrogant and got burned. They needed this. I feel sorry for the Cardinals next Sunday.

Case in point: how Asante acted after the first interception, which resulted in a 15 yard penalty which hurt the Falcons from getting another TD instead of three points. Fundamentals can be fixed. Oh yeah, weren’t we missing our best defensive player? NO SPOON. Come on, man. Chill out.

P-Dawg

November 12th, 2012
10:56 am

Looks like Thomas DeCoud was right about the lot of you… ““The bandwagon is over,” said DeCoud, who then mumbled something about how the crowd at the Georgia Dome next Sunday probably will be filled with fans of the Arizona Cardinals.”

http://espn.go.com/blog/nflnation/post/_/id/66560/saints-bring-falcons-down-to-earth

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
10:58 am

Even Stephen A. Smith isn’t overreacting about this loss.

He understood we didn’t have Julio for two quarters, no Spoon, and still had an opportunity to win the game. We will destroy the Saints in the dome in a couple weeks. Book it.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
11:01 am

“SW you are correct the Falcons gave it away. Many don’t like RWhite’s talking but I have found he is pretty much the best barometer of how the team is playing. He is not afraid to tell the facts. Whether he should or not is another story.”

Amen, Wings. He needs to keep those comments in the locker room.

D3

November 12th, 2012
11:03 am

SW — As much as I’ve disagreed with regarding the “disconnect” theory, you may be onto something. I think any and all disconnect comes from Smitty. It is his refusal to change in many key areas, mainly at running back and on the offensive line, as well as the defensive line. I know we both wanted Brandon Thompson, but would he be making that big of a difference on our DL? I mean there’s so many areas that seemingly need improving and only so many draft picks. I finally agree that it starts with the lines after fighting that assumption for so long. I say let Grimes walk and cut Turner, freeing up nearly $18 million and sign the biggest, best defensive tackle in free agency. Still think we should have signed Solai away from the Dolphins, even though it would’ve been pricey. We’ll have to respectfully disagree on Holmes. The small amount I saw of him in preseason lets me know that he’s our future at LT.

I mean there’s so much that needs fixing in terms of defensive pieces. I think we’re OK at safety and decent at (starting) linebacker, but beyond that, you can justify using the first pick on any number of positions: cornerback, defensive tackle, defensive end, linebacker, etc, etc.

I believe that we must fix our defensive tackle. Wabe I think said it best last night in that we have a bunch of rotational guys, but no studs. Walker is a great rotational, Jerry is a never has been, Babs is 31 years old, and Peters is hurt this year. I think that DT is more important than DE. For whatever reason, Sidbury simply can’t use his speed and talent to get on the field, so I don’t really expect us to re-sign him. We’re stuck with Ray Edwards for better or worse through this year and next. Biermann should be moved permanently to OLB, thus killing two birds with one stone (alleviating depth while also freeing up a spot on the DE). I mean, do we really want to gamble on a first round pick DE? I can’t imagine taking another guy that will get the same treatment as Abe, Ray Ed, and Biermann where they are fighting double teams and getting little to no help from the DTs.

Then there’s cornerback. I like Robert McClain a lot and think he’s legit. Samuel is up there in age and Dunta was not a good signing (even though I think he’s OK). Do we try and bring Grimes back for a somewhat cheaper price? Hell, he’ll be 30 next year also and coming off a pretty major injury.

The fact is that after this season, TD is going to have to make some hard choices with this team. I’d say that we’re going to have to be pretty active in free agency and bring in some guys somewhere. Turner, Grimes, and Babs should all be on the block. As much as I love Babs, we have to start getting younger at some point. Hell, maybe even DRob gets the axe. Assuming Gonzo retires along with Grimes, cut Turner, you’re looking at well over $20 million in cap space. I know some of that will get eaten up, but we can’t keep doing piecemeal, stop-gap stuff.

Wings

November 12th, 2012
11:07 am

I don’t have a problem with RWhite talking. I didn’t make a judgement in the post.

The defense is only as good as its efforts. Any other assessment is based on emotion.

Wabe

November 12th, 2012
11:08 am

BL,

To SW’s defense, yeah, they got it done against the Iggles, Cowboys, and Broncos. But, then they’ll have games like they did vs. Oakland where Carson Palmer throws for over 300 or so yards and marches down the field and ties it up 20-20 when our defense needs to make one stop to get us the W. We let the Panthers pretty much have their way with us, with a few forced turnovers proving to be critical in that game.

I do agree with you, it’s been better this season. But, the level of consistency still isn’t there. To SW’s point:

“I can not trust these guys to get it done on defense.”

That’s pretty much it in a nutshell. You don’t know what to expect. Will they play like they did against Denver, Philly, Dallas, or will they come out and give us one of those ‘dud’ performances. That’s why it’s difficult to trust them. I think they’re better suited to matchup to the likes of Rodgers and Manning because Nolan can get exotic with his looks. But, after watching how bad we were yesterday, and the ups and downs they’ve had this season, it’s difficult to say with certainty [like Bears, Niners fans can say] that there defense will definitely come to play.

It kinda boils back down to what we said all last season and this past offseason. You have to be dominant on one side of the ball or the other. The Falcons have the weapons offensively to be dominant, but, I wouldn’t say they’re quite at dominant yet. I’d say they’re solid. Same with defense, they’re not great, they’re alright/good. They need to put the pressure on opponents on one side or the other. The Pats don’t have a great defense, they still got to the big game last season, but that’s mainly because their offense put a lot of pressure on opposing offenses to keep up. The Colts with Manning never had a shutdown type defense. They just forced folks to play keep up. In the same way, the Falcons offense will need to cover up for any potential holes this defense has.

I’ll tell you one way to eliminate this issue about the run defense. Make the run game irrelevant for opponents. Not by playing ball control offense. But, by building big leads and forcing teams to abandon the run game. That’s what the Colts used to do with Manning.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
11:09 am

D3

I agree. There is gonna be many offseason moves that need to be made, but I am more worried about the Falcons making noise in the playoffs this year, which I think they will.

D3

November 12th, 2012
11:10 am

Last thing before I take a break. It’s easy to criticize the linebackers and defensive backs for their poor play, but Drew Breesbag had all day long to throw the football. I mean we never even got close to him at all. We had one sack and that’s basically it. We did better in the second half for sure, but he had all the time in the world. Spoon is the heart and soul of this defense, but they were missing Darren Sproles, so it’s hard for me to just point to not having one guy.

Finally, I think it’s just frustrating and I’m not going to use the term, but Smitty’s refusal to change in key areas (mainly offensive line and running back). There is no change at offensive line after a supposedly “open competition.” We keep doing the same stuff in the backfield that’s got our tails whipped in the playoffs (Turner up the gut for no gain or even a loss). I think defense just had a bad game, but I was so disappointed in the gameplan to just let Brees pick us a part. No, the sky’s not falling, but if we don’t change and adapt, I can’t see us achieving our ultimate goals.

Wings

November 12th, 2012
11:12 am

Wabe 100% build big leads and let the offense play the entire game.

Wings

November 12th, 2012
11:15 am

Maybe someone at Falcons office will see this:
1st and 10 at ATL 20 M.Turner left guard to ATL 17 for -3 yards
1st and 1 at NO 1 M.Turner left tackle to NO 1 for no gain
1st and 10 at NO 27 M.Turner left end to NO 24 for 3 yards
3rd and 1 at NO 18 M.Turner right tackle to NO 19 for -1 yards
1st and 10 at ATL 42 M.Turner left guard to ATL 48 for 6 yards

1st and 10 at ATL 20 M.Turner right end to ATL 29 for 9 yards
2nd and 1 at ATL 29 M.Turner right end to ATL 30 for 1 yard
1st and 10 at NO 15 M.Turner right end to NO 16 for -1 yards
2nd and 1 at NO 1 M.Turner left guard to NO 2 for -1 yards
1st and 10 at ATL 23 M.Turner right end to ATL 25 for 2 yards

1st and 10 at ATL 20 M.Turner right guard to ATL 21 for 1 yard

1st and 5 at NO 5 M.Turner left guard to NO 5 for no gain
3rd and 1 at NO 1 M.Turner left guard to NO 2 for -1 yards

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
11:16 am

Wabe

Do you think that maybe, just maybe… the Falcons were playing down to their competition?

Oakland is a bad example because the Falcons held them pretty well the first half, but got gassed in the second half because our offense was doing jack crap.

Also, you need to take the Saints out of the equation, because they score 20 points or more on almost all the defenses in the league. Just because they have a horrible defense, doesn’t mean that their offense is inept, which it never was.

I concede that the panthers was a horrible defensive game-plan. That one was on Mike Nolan.

Your argument as a whole doesn’t hold validity because the Falcons would have great defensive stands(in the past) versus inept offenses, and get creamed against good ones–look at 2010/2011 for examples in this. Yet, this year, they had great defensive performances against some of the most potent offenses in the league. This team is different. They just got to high and mighty with their record. They came out with poor technique.

It happens. It’s just one game.

Wabe

November 12th, 2012
11:17 am

Might sound crazy…

But, this team might wanna start coming up with something different to help jolt the redzone offense.

Wildcat, Dominique Davis, Julio leaping over defenders to get into the endzone, I don’t care. Because when our season’s on the line with a one and done situation, we better exhaust all options knowing Turner success rate ain’t all that sucessful.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
11:22 am

Wabe

The Giants defense isn’t consistent either. Texans defense is consistent? You mean the ones who got creamed by Green Bay? Didn’t the Bears get creamed by them, too?

Our offense would destroy them, because they have strong lines/linebackers, but weak azz secondaries. Cowboys kept us in check because they have one of the strongest(secondary) cores in the league.

Point is. Defenses have bad games. Offenses have bad games. This is the NFL. Nothing is consistent.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
11:24 am

Wabe

That’s not a bad idea, but I feel the Falcons need to start running the ball from the shotgun. They have had huge success with the delayed hand-offs this year. I would never take Matty Ice from the game, though.

Gotta give Saints credit… they made some damn good plays in the secondary. Yet, I agree that Turner is done, especially with how bad out push is on the offensive line.

D3

November 12th, 2012
11:25 am

Wings — You got it right there my friend. Turner just doesn’t get it done. I’m not happy with getting “one good run” a game after losing yards, getting no gains, or 1 yard on the other 15-20 carries. I’m not saying that Quizz or Snelling are Earl Campbell and Barry Sanders, but it’s time to give them a shot. Would it kill Smitty and Koetter to just TRY Antone Smith? All these other teams are doing it with ease and yet we just keep rolling out the same ol’ junk.

MB — As you said, we’ll just have to respectfully disagree. As Einstein said, doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. Outside of putting Konz in (when Reynolds got hurt BTW), what have they tried different on the OL in 2+ years?

Wings

November 12th, 2012
11:26 am

BL why are you trying to defend them for such a bad effort. It doesn’t matter who did or didn’t, it was bad!! You loose your credibility. What they did against other teams in previous weeks is history.

D3

November 12th, 2012
11:26 am

Wabe — Totally agree. Anything but the same old, same old, same old. Turner up the gut for no gain or a loss. Put JJ or HD in the backfield for chrissake.

Wings

November 12th, 2012
11:28 am

D3 thanks; and the chances of A Smith getting in the game on offense is probably nil now with the penalty he made yesterday. I think HC holds grudges.

Wings

November 12th, 2012
11:36 am

If HC Mike Smith were a physician, all of his patients would die because he would refuse to see/believe symptoms. He is probably a perfectionist which makes dealing with him very difficult for the other coaches because he is never wrong. I’m just guessing.

Chop Buster

November 12th, 2012
11:56 am

I said a few weeks ago that I didn’t expect this team to be where they are because it has too many holes and inconsistent play on defense–and the OL. If you think about the last three or four times we’ve played the Aints, they did nothing any different than the way they played us in the past. They’ve submarined through our OL and clogged up the middle whenever Turner got the ball. They now know if you stop Turner’s feet, you have him stopped.

We all have mentioned various issues that have been recurring through Smitty and TD’s time here. The defense has always been the cause of us losing leads, stopping our opponents, etc., etc. What’s most disheartening is they still have not found a way to stop Brees when this team has been the largest obstacle to our division’s success. That’s what has me so upset with this loss…the team looked like all the past Falcon teams that couldn’t run the ball on the Aints or stop Lance Moore and Jimmy Graham. That’s Drew’s bread and butter and we still failed to take them out of the equation. Now I believe Nolan is capable of taking away two players, but that defense yesterday didn’t look anything like Nolan until the second half. Someone has to make some real changes for this team to really succeed. The DL has issues and the secondary has always had issues. The offense needs to turned loose on our opponents and allow them to score as much as possible. If they have to go to the air for 500 yards then so be it. Snelling and Rodgers can mix it up with an occasional run until this team gets things fixed in the off season. But like D3 said, we cannot keep doing the same thing and expecting different results.

SG

November 12th, 2012
12:00 pm

First off D3, hat tip for the sense of humor you brought to the post – and also for the respectful kudos to Turner for what he’s delivered in the past. But while much of the media may be sitting back and saying “told ya so”, I don’t think we – the fans – were caught too off guard by what happened yesterday. The game brought to light several concerns previously pointed out in the Cage.
My take:
• Watching the Saints gain 150 yds.rushing against the Eagles last week raised some concern because along w/ Brees’s arm that makes for a balanced attack – and for the most part we haven’t had balance.
• We missed Spoon’s spark yesterday but what was really bothersome was the D looked like Nolan had left the building for some coffee and beignets. They looked lost much of the time.
• I agree Turner’s best days are behind him but I think our OL still looks less than stout for any ground game. 2 times inside the 5 in the last 2 minutes against the supposedly worst D?….nuff said.
• Rogers has a role – and he can be shifty like you point out about Ingram and Ivory – but I can’t see him as a compliment, not a feature back. As for Antone Smith, I thought if he had a shot, by now we would’ve seen him.
• As for Ryan, there aren’t enough superlatives to go around for his ability, smarts and tenacity when given control.
• Congrats to Tony G – you may want to stick around just one more year while everything continues to gel.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
12:07 pm

MB — As you said, we’ll just have to respectfully disagree. As Einstein said, doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. Outside of putting Konz in (when Reynolds got hurt BTW), what have they tried different on the OL in 2+ years?

But really, if we used the Einstein thing, if you do the same thing expect the same results thing, we should have won, because we are 8-0. We did the same thing, should expect to win.

If you want to bring up Playoffs, well, this was not a playoff game. If we do the same thing in our next playoff game, we did our last…then I am with ya.

Again, I was like you, I thought we were about to fall behind 35-17 and it was gonna be ugly, so our D did bow up, I was happy to see that. I agree with a previous poster, that penalty and Smitty blow up on he sideline seemed to tighten us up. If I blame Smitty for anything, it was how me handled that situation so early in the game. As somebody said, Smitty expects his men to be men, and I like the hell out of that, but I bet he wished he kept a little more composure. It was like the players said, woa, this dude is wound.

I get the feeling no matter what we did, or how we did it, give it to turner, not give it to turner, no matter WHAT we did,or who was on the line, that game was destined to go down the the last series like 85% of NFL games today.

I was right, and we had them beat, but Roddy lost the ball, and we lost a time out on a screw job challenge call that was huge.

My point, every play made or not made seems to change destiny of the game, but in the end, they always come down to inches, or a play, or something seeming random, but it is all be design by NFL rules. Call it pinball football, And Coaches plan for it, and that is where Smitty is the master, he always seems to have a plan for pulling those games out, or quashing other teams ability to do so. It is a time out/clock/field position/communication/ management skill.

If anything, I critique Smitty by being too much a perfectionist and his teams might tighten up under duress. But the fact that we did not melt down when given the chance gives me hope.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
12:12 pm

That is IT. Pinball Football. That is what the NFL is. Just about every game is a 16 round knockdown heavy weight fight. In the end, there are a million coulda beens, should beens, but it always seems to come down to the scorecards, and a 114-115 split decision.

It is not random, it is by design, and it it makes for awesome football.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
12:15 pm

“BL why are you trying to defend them for such a bad effort. It doesn’t matter who did or didn’t, it was bad!! You loose your credibility. What they did against other teams in previous weeks is history.”

I never said the effort wasn’t bad. They adjusted in the second half. though. You lose credibility if you cannot see that they came back from a ten point hole and had a chance to win the game due to those adjustments.

Oh, so we can be timid on the Falcon’s past playoff gaffs and get on the coaches for past mistakes, but when it’s a positive note… GOD forbid we look at the past performances. That’s double-standard talking, my friend.

The point is… this team competed, and had chances to win the game. But, they didn’t execute and lost. Does that mean this team are the pretenders from years past? Absolutely not. This just means they have things to fix, and we are only 9 games into the season. I think the Falcons are in a very good position.

Do they have areas of concern? Yes. Every team does.

Red Zone efficiency, Turner is useless in this offense and throws off the groove, the defense have made fundamental mistakes throughout the game, the offensive line cannot get push off the ball for the run game… yeah, I know.

Yet, these issues can be adjusted and fixed. They have a whole half of a season to get it together. And, I know it’s hard to see, but this team has WAY more positives than negatives. Especially with our stud QB, Matty Ice.

Keep it positive folks. They are 8-1 and have made great progress this year, and with this coaching staff, they will continue to progress.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
12:22 pm

I hate to say this, and probably gonna get blasted for it, but I see more negativity on this blog so far then the media itself.

I mean, to refuse to look at ANY positives, just baffles me. Matty Ice threw for 400+ yards… defense held well the second half… and they fought back from a ten point hole to almost win the game. The calls and plays just didn’t go the Falcons way and they lost.

It’s okay to be critical, but the sky isn’t falling either.

Gotta be objective folks. Put emotions aside and look at the whole picture….

And I got to tell you, that picture looks pretty freaking sweet to me.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
12:32 pm

http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap1000000093674/article/matt-ryan-atlanta-falcons-must-decide-what-loss-will-mean

Decent article. Somewhat negative, but also points out that how the Falcons respond from this loss will dictate their future.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
12:37 pm

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
12:40 pm

BL, you know you are now and forever will be my brother. And we respectfully agree to disagree at times. And this is one of those times.

The Falcons are an immensely talented team. They clearly are light years ahead offensively than they are defensively. That is not in question I think we can agree.

You cite the victories over the Broncos, Eagles, and Cowboys. Two of those three teams are the epitome of disfunction. Just like the Falcons defense, there is no game to game consistency with either the Eagles or the Cowboys. Both are immensely talented teams that are drenched in the stinch of subpar performance overall.

As far as Denver goes, we caught them earlier. We caught Peyton in a rare display of ineffective play. But in the second half, when he got hot, he torched the very same defense. As others have said, who in the hell is the Oakland Raiders, a disfunctional youth league team that pretends to be an NFL franchise. But they came in and pushed, yes pushed the Falcons to the limit in our own house.

During the Smith regime, there is a constant theme of subpar performance when it comes to this defensive unit. There is a common thread of suspect play calling at big moments for the Falcons. Let me be clear. Matt Ryan and the Falcon offense has made Mike Smith look great; it is not, repeat not, the other way around.

As far as not looking at the positives, I have cited the positives that exist on offense continuously. If walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, to quote Stephan A., it ain’t a darn mongoose. This is a defensive unit that is missing heart, is missing a pulse, and can not, CAN NOT be relied.

What the Saints do to us is not rocket science. They use the SAME DAMNED formula each time they play us. Heavy reliance on the TE, enough rushing to keep the defense honest, and at least one WR hitting the play on the outside deep. And we have not figured that out yet!! Come on, man.

Whole picture….This team is only going to go as far as this offensive unit can take us. it has the upside to be so much better on the defensive side. All I ask for is consistency. And it is not there.
Sure, we get the turnover victories but we give up chunks at the wrong time as well. Pressure is not even in the equation.

Been a fan for over 40 years now. Have earned the right to be emotional. I have too much invested in this team. All I ask for is a little more consistency and the capacity to adapt to the changing dynamic of the game.

That is emotion, true that my friend. And I wear the badge with honor. And have nothing but respect for my brother and his opinion.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
12:42 pm

The sky is not falling, I agree with you. But this defensive unit can not continue to underachieve and underperform if we are to reach the ultimate goal. And more times than naught, underachieve is what it has done.

LRD

November 12th, 2012
12:45 pm

SW; Nice to have you back man!!!

Tackling… That is one of my biggest gripes about the game.. I dont have the exact amount, but it appeared to me, that yards after contact was a bit beyond the norm.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
12:48 pm

“The sky is not falling, I agree with you. But this defensive unit can not continue to underachieve and underperform if we are to reach the ultimate goal. And more times than naught, underachieve is what it has done.”

You mean against the Giants, where they held them to 7 points in the first half and was the only reason why ATL scored in the playoffs? Again, we always find negatives, but never look at the positives. The defense showed up against the Giants last season in the playoffs, the offense didn’t. I doubt they will have the problem this year.

This team is nowhere near 2010(offensively and defensively), and if you cannot see this… I do not know what to tell you.

Davidl3940

November 12th, 2012
12:48 pm

Michael Turner time has passed. No speed or power left.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
12:51 pm

The defense held the Saints in the second half to only 10 points, yet all we can harp on was the first half. No credit to adjusting and coming back to almost win the game. If the offense executed and scored in the redzone, we would be praising the defense for holding strong and giving this team a chance to win. But, I guess that’s just how it is, right?

That’s life. Always focus on the negatives and never the positives.

Tackling was atrocious THE FIRST HALF, yet the second half defense was extremely better. That’s all I am saying.

LRD

November 12th, 2012
12:54 pm

Oh, and with Julio out.. did we see any screen passes? I mean, is he the only one capable of catching and running that type of play?

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
12:54 pm

BL – you are one optimistic cuss – but, I agree – there is a distinct disconnect on trying for force feed Mike Turner up the middle. Why? WHY? Here is another point: Folks remember Brian Finneran? He was our 3rd down guy, and a good guy in the red zone – we drafted Meier to replace him – at least to me – but, we NEVER developed Meier – and, despite our superior receiving options – have been reduced to throwing to a tackle TE – that is the height of pathetic.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
1:01 pm

Paddy O

I feel that if this game didn’t wake up Mike Smith on how ineffective Tuner is in this offense, then nothing will. Rodgers needs to be the starting running back, period. Run from the shotgun, allow some zone blocking… turn this into a Peyton Manning offense.

Run the ball outside of the tackles with Jaquizz…. Tuner is done. I can no longer defend him or the offensive line with running the football.

The offense is still damn scary, though. I mean… very fun to watch. Matt Ryan is doing extremely well.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:02 pm

I see more negativity on this blog so far then the media itself.

BINGO BL. I saw posts on here saying they can’t see us winning a playoff game. It is like, wow. Meier? LOL, He never could stay healthy, is Meyer on another NFL roster?

Fact is, you got to have a back that can fall forward for a yard. We don’t have one. The good thing is we have 7 games to play with to figure something out.

Up until this season, Turner has been statistically productive, but not the pile pusher we need. But this year, he is not even being productive, I really think the FB was we drafted might have been helpful, but regardless, there are 30 teams in the NFL who would love our problems, but it biggest self proclaimed fans are wanting to hit the panic button.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
1:03 pm

2010….with an offense that was a machine. 28 TDs and 3700 yards from MR2, a thousand yards season from RW84, a Pro Bowl year from TG88, and a 13-3 record.

A defense in 201, that ranked 5th against the run (25th right now) and has show NO upgrade in the passing arena despite the so called upgrades on that side of the ball.

I’m seeing some positives and I acknowledge them. But the SAME inconsistencies are still in play defensively TWO years later. It is an issue, my brother.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:03 pm

Somebody posted comments from DeCoud – that boy needs to shut his pie hole. His missed tackle on the TD run looked like a 6th grader NOT wanting to tackle – how do you have safeties who don’t like to hit? I still say Dunta would make a decent safety. DeCoud now has 3 pretty iffy games; and, as much as i like Willie Mo – no bleeping way should be in single coverage with anybody.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:05 pm

So why give to Turner? Can you guy not equate filled gaps on every play with Matty Ryan career yardage day? You don’t think one might have a little impact on the other?

Falcons Rule

November 12th, 2012
1:05 pm

Hellz yeah I thought we played well. We jst got outplayed this time, but that doesn’t mean our season is over. Our guys just need to stop talking smack they can’t back up, and learn to play like pros.

If we can stop talking smack and stay out of the spotlight, the refs seem to let a bunch of holds and push-offs slide like they did lst night. If they don’t get called, good on us and screw the other team. But not being able to win despite that sucks. Especially with all the smack talk making us look like idiots afterwards.

Time to refocus and fly under the radar through the rest of the season. Lots of easy games ahead. Maybe we’ll finally get our shot; won’t have an easier chance than this year’s schedule, for sure! Just focus on football!

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
1:06 pm

“I feel that if this game didn’t wake up Mike Smith on how ineffective Tuner is in this offense, then nothing will. Rodgers needs to be the starting running back, period. Run from the shotgun, allow some zone blocking… turn this into a Peyton Manning offense.

Run the ball outside of the tackles with Jaquizz…. Tuner is done. I can no longer defend him or the offensive line with running the football.

The offense is still damn scary, though. I mean… very fun to watch. Matt Ryan is doing extremely well.”

AMEN, my brother. Totally agree with you. But please help me understand why this defensive minded head coach can not let his premium DC transform this defense to what it could be with a few moves and re-alignments. Most importantly, explain to me why this defensive minded head coach has not put his stamp on this defense given it was his so called pedigree in Jax?

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:07 pm

NO upgrade in the passing arena despite the so called upgrades on that side of the ball.

We missed on Ray whatever. It happens, TD tried to address it.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:09 pm

BL: son, you just can’t help yourself – you want to control the conversation. as stupid as that is, it is the same failing that smitty has. most of the gripes here are on the D and Turner – by a broad spectrum of fans. I think most folks are not surprised, but bloody disappointed. I stated previously, we played fairly well. We just lost TO LOUSY PLAYCALLING AT CRUNCH TIME. Turner and Johnson. I think Nolan – not having played NO all that much – took some suggestions from Smith on how to arrange his D – it was an EPIC failure the first half; the 2nd half is how Nolan would have done it himself. But yes, our defensive pressure was AWFUL.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:12 pm

BL – it looks sweet to you precisely because you are a pollyanna panderer. YOu and MB keep talking about this loss helping the team get better – the tripe flew after the GB shellacking. AT this point, this team should have NO growth to experience – just excellence delivered. As indicated, we shall see how we battle with the remaining 4 divisional games. I hope we go 3-1; would prefer 4-0.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:12 pm

Time to refocus and fly under the radar through the rest of the season.

Exactly, that undefeated talk becomes such a distraction. Let the pundits say I told ya so, move onto the next story, and allow Smitty to work on our issues. It is very obvious that we need to be able to push the pile, or only real shortcoming. You can scheme around this problem until the cows come home, but you will never overcome it. You just have to knock the other guy back every once in a while.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
1:13 pm

Despite his shortcomings at critical times, the RB that was Michael Turner is still averaging 4.0 per carry and could still have a shot at a thousand yard season. Yes,his time is nearing an end but he could still be a factor as the sun sets on his ATL run.

D3

November 12th, 2012
1:13 pm

BL — Good point regarding the negativity. I’m as guilty of that as anyone. I’ve tried to start to get better about that. I do like the way we fought back and clawed our way back into the game. This is a different Falcons team and we’re still 8-1, atop the NFC. You’re going to lose games in the NFL, it’s just the way it is. I thought this was as a good of “loss” as you can have. Given that situation last year, I totally expected us to get blown out. The RB and OL is the most frustrating thing to me. I’m OK with the defense because we simply ARE better than year’s past, just have to find a way to get to the QB.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
1:13 pm

“AMEN, my brother. Totally agree with you. But please help me understand why this defensive minded head coach can not let his premium DC transform this defense to what it could be with a few moves and re-alignments. Most importantly, explain to me why this defensive minded head coach has not put his stamp on this defense given it was his so called pedigree in Jax?”

Again, the Falcons defense did a great job in the playoffs last season, the offense didn’t. Remember the score? I am not worried about the defensive side of the ball.

The Saints will score on ANY defense in the league. The defense did their job in the second half and the offense did not take advantage of it. There is no excuse for a 4 and out in the redzone. All you can hope for a defense to do against QBs like Manning, Brees, and Brady is to get you stops…. and our defense did just that in the second half.

Also, I could care less about the ranked-yardage stats. It’s all about points allowed, and the Falcon’s defense is still top ten in that category.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:16 pm

BL: My only worry on Quizz is him getting worn down – which is why I push Snelling and Quizz as the backs – both can be flared out as receivers. I’d use Turner as FB – the man can block.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:16 pm

AT this point, this team should have NO growth to experience – just excellence delivered

No Growth? LOL. Ryan is looking like the MVP, he threw for a career day, don’t you somewhat coorelate that filled running lanes?

We are one misjudged pass from being 9-0, but no, we just need to start tossing unproven rookies in to protect our franchise QBs blind side. That’ll help.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
1:17 pm

Remember how many point the Saints scored on the 49ers in the playoffs last year?

They have a REALLY good offense… they are going to score.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:18 pm

MB- read the synopsis of Turner runs provided by Wings. That should get turner benched.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 12th, 2012
1:19 pm

Things were so different when we were 4-0~5-0. We were so far out front of the rest of our divisional foes, after each win, we would look back and yell, IS ANYONE THERE….knowone would answer, just our own echo. Last week, we let out another yelp… lo and behold, someone thought they heard something in the distance, knowone really paid attention, but noticed our echo was very faint.

After the lost to the Saints, we yelled out once more, IS ANYONE THERE…the Tampa Bay Bucs answered, YOU BETTER BELIEVE IT…and we’re bringing company (the Saints).

Don’t look now…We’re not alone…

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:20 pm

Quizz is a gimmick, he is great when he gets touches the D does not expect and does the ankle breakers, but his propensity to stop running when pursued from behind, or rationalization to run 10 yards in reverse to get gain 1 net would get REAL old REAL fast once defenses started to game plan for him to be a feature back.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:20 pm

matty- MR2 is thriving in a pass oriented offense – which JJ is a key contributor too. the arguments by the pollyanna panderers here is that MENTALLY this loss will help them down the road – that is somewhere between fundamental BS and hubris. but, if you want to ostrich – at least BL is in full agreement on the Turner negative impact on the offenses rhythm.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
1:22 pm

“BL: My only worry on Quizz is him getting worn down – which is why I push Snelling and Quizz as the backs – both can be flared out as receivers. I’d use Turner as FB – the man can block.”

That’s actually not a bad idea, and at least Turner will see more of the field… but it still doesn’t solve the lack of push from the offensive line. We need to get rid of the power run game scheme and adopt a more shotgun heavy/zone-blocking element. Need more sweep, tosses, ect. to Snelling and Quizz.

It also cannot hurt to use more bootleg plays in the redzone… let Matty Ice use his athleticism to get people open/create diversions. I mean, he is no Mike Vick, but he isn’t molasses either.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:22 pm

matty – ah, more pure BS. I’m done. go found a falcons blog for pollyanna panderers.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:23 pm

Somebody, that is very good. My biggest concern was us to keep winning and seal the division by game 12 and losing intensity and getting kicked in the teeth by a 9-7 team used to playing for its life every week. Competition is good.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:24 pm

So Ryan thriving is not due to team growth? Is this blog reserved chicken dodgers?

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:24 pm

BL- i agree – our offensive line gets no push; so, either use delayed draws or run off tackle; or simply throw screens. this was a tough loss against a blatantly inferior team. yeah, some was execution – but the last goal line was plain lousy play calling – that is on either Welcome Back or Smitty. At some point, Smitty needs to realize that wasting plays on offense bites you against GOOD teams. NO is now back on its feet. TB is GOOD. and Carolina – if Cam cleans up his turn overs – is also good. Our divisional games will be a good litmus test.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:25 pm

BL- that is something we have not done much this year.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
1:27 pm

D3

That’s why I never gave up on the Falcons during the game. Even when they were down by more than ten points. This team is different. I agree they have things they need to work on, especially the running element. This loss sucks, no doubt…. but there is no way that the old Falcons would have fought back like these guys I saw yesterday. I am still extremely happy with the Falcons so far, and look forward to how Mike Smith adjusts to our lack of run game.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:28 pm

matty- MR2 is thriving in a pass oriented offense

So Ryan is thriving due to a different offense since 2010. JJ is coming onto his own. And no growth?
Yesterday we have a career day, but filled running lanes has nothing to do with it? Man, sometimes you guys just don’t want to be rational.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:31 pm

NO is now back on its feet. TB is GOOD. and Carolina – if Cam cleans up his turn overs – is also good. Our divisional games will be a good litmus test.

Totally agree, competition is good. I want to play the best, I want to get kicked in the teeth and get ready for the playoffs. Hell, I don’t care of lose a couple more games and go into the playoffs used to playing for our lives. Not having any adversity is bad.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
1:32 pm

“NO is now back on its feet. TB is GOOD. and Carolina – if Cam cleans up his turn overs – is also good. Our divisional games will be a good litmus test.”

I know people are going to disagree but I am not sold on TB, just like I am not sold on the Saint on the defensive side of the ball. TB’s defense is just as bad… I mean the are feasting on crap teams, and what makes it worse… their offense is not as good. I am more worried about Carolina, to be honest. I am hoping for 3-1.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
1:36 pm

MB

I am sorry, man. But, I cannot defend Turner. In 2010, Turner was almost a gimme when we were a couple yards from the endzone… not anymore. We need to adapt to our players’ strengths. And, this offensive line is more suited for zone blocking/shotgun runs… then power I formations. Turner would not fit into that scheme, because he is a downhill back… and we are just not getting any gaps to form with the current offensive line. This is where coaching adjustments come in.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:36 pm

“NO is now back on its feet. TB is GOOD. and Carolina – if Cam cleans up his turn overs – is also good. Our divisional games will be a good litmus test.”

it is the NFL, one of those teams is gonna make a run for a WC spot, it is called momentum. You don’t keep it for 19 games, that is why it has never been done. I swear I think people don’t like competition.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:36 pm

the growth you folks were asserting was emotional and mental. I don’t see growth; I see the removal of shackles.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 12th, 2012
1:37 pm

With all due respect to Mike Nolan, he most certainly deserves it…but, last year around the same time, our defense was statistically rated around 10th in the league. I’m not saying I want BVG back, I’m just sayin…

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
1:37 pm

Good banter, gents. It was kept civil for once… I wonder why?

Anyways, be blessed and try to keep things positive. 8-1, baby!

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:39 pm

I don’t I want to crush the opposition. One reason I’ve always liked the 84 Bears.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:39 pm

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
1:40 pm

“With all due respect to Mike Nolan, he most certainly deserves it…but, last year around the same time, our defense was statistically rated around 10th in the league. I’m not saying I want BVG back, I’m just sayin…”

Points per game, people. Points per game. Yard percentages are like corvettes for old people. Yeah, it looks nice and shiny… but you’re still old. Falcons were stopping the run because everyone was passing instead… all perspective.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:40 pm

I don’t defend Turner, he is slow, and I expect to see him be used less and less, he has lost the productivity he had. But we can’t rely on scheme to overcome our OL getting pushed back 3 yards into the BF. There is never 1 reason why you lose. Turner touched the ball 13 our of 120+ plays, he never turned it over. He is not WHY we lost.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:41 pm

when I ran a pizza store in AThens, my goal was to put the other guy(s) out of business.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:41 pm

Paddy O, Me too on the 85 bears, Sure, but the NFL is a little different today.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:42 pm

goal was to put the other guy(s) out of business. And, were you successful?

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
1:44 pm

he is the reason. we failed to score on that last goal line. that comes down to 3 items: Turner; bad play calling (Mike Johnson as TE? really? stupid cute), and MR2 throwing the ball slightly off to RW.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
1:48 pm

Paddy, if he scores, it just changes the complexion of the game, it does not assure a guaranteed result. Had we scored with a minute and a half left, you don’t think Brees would have given it a shot? We also lost because Roddy misjudged the the ball.

It is the outcome as designed by the NFL rule book. Pinball Football.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
1:53 pm

D3,

As my esteemed brother has reminded me today, emotions are a powerful part of who I am. But I am glad that I have BL to keep me focused and in a constant state of thought.

He may not agree with me (and he doesn’t) but he is always respectful and insightful. He is my brother from another mother.

D3

November 12th, 2012
1:54 pm

BL / Paddy — Good points. The run play selection is really terrible. I still believe that Turner should be getting his touches cut way down. I still think that Turner could be of some use and if he’s a true team player, he would suck it up for the team and play some fullback. Problem solved. But anyway, those playcalls are terrible. He’s like 5-7 yards behind Ryan and I saw him one time run a frackin’ counter. Are you kidding me? Arguably one of the slowest starting RBs in the NFL is running a counter? It’s not a knock against Turner, per se, but rather that he simply doesn’t fit in this new offense.

E43

November 12th, 2012
1:54 pm

I don’t think the running game is that complicated to figure out. In my opinion, none of our running backs have the speed or quickness to get to the outside anymore. Basically, defensive lines will pinch on running downs. I don’t think that the Oline is at fault because the RB’s should be able to beat that pinch on the outside but they don’t. Turner used to run counters and beat the pinch. Instead, our RB’s run right into walls. Dunn did the exact same thing once he lost most of his speed at about the age of 30 something? Meanwhile Norwood had no issues averaging 6 ypc behind the very same Oline.

I’m not saying that they should bust down doors and get Norwood back on the team. I know that Antone Smith’s kryptonite is definitely not outside runs. I think the Falcons should at least give him a few caries. Worst case scenario is that they burn their top pick on a situation they didn’t even research enough.

Anyone remember when Julio Jones took a pitch and ran it for a first down?

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
2:00 pm

pizza fast did go out.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
2:01 pm

E43, what I am saying is that finding a versatile, effective back will be critical in the 2013 off season.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
2:01 pm

nah, not on Roddy – the ball was about 5′ too right – if MR2 had lead Roddy a wee bit more – OR, Tony G was open on that play. but, that is the problem with precise execution. occasionally, it does not happen.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
2:02 pm

if we score, we have a lead. far more likely to win if you have an actual lead near the end of the game.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
2:03 pm

SW

For sure, bro. I’m glad to have you back in the mix. You are the example on what good debate is.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
2:07 pm

It is good to be home. And all I want is for my Falcons to give me that shot, that realistic shot, at the Lombardi. We may not agree on how to get there but damn it, we ALL want to get there.

tdawgmom

November 12th, 2012
2:09 pm

My first Falcons T Shirt was and still is a no. 33, given to me by my son and daughter n law. I love watching Michael Turner get clear and make those long, productive runs. Having said that, those moments just do not occur very often; they are at the very least far and few between. When our career is not productive, we just have to accept the inevitable. That”s what Coach Smith needs to do. Michael Turner’s time is over. It’s time for a younger running back with fresher legs. It just drives me literally insane when I see Turner being given the ball on 1st down every damn time and he either gains a yard or loses yardage. You have this talented, intellectual quarterback on the field that sees and knows what needs to be done. You also have this talented new offensive coordinator that realizes Ryan’s talents. For Gosh Sakes!! Please, Coach Smith let them take the Falcons to the next level! I love you, but your are driving me crazy.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
2:15 pm

He looked like he had a beat on it, but then it went over his head. He looked like he was making an adjustment to the throw, but would have been hit in stride over the shoulder had he just kept going.

Fact is, the ball was over his head, he slowed down. I guess like everything else, we saw it different, lol.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
2:21 pm

Roddy was running backwards, the ball was over his head. There is no reason I can think of for a receiver to be running backwards, unless he is compensating for a underthrown ball, but since the ball was was 5 yards over his head, that is not the case.

Had he just kept running, has an over the shoulder grab, granted, not a optimum play you want to win a game, but it is a play Roddy makes generally.

Wings

November 12th, 2012
2:32 pm

BL – I feel that if this game didn’t wake up Mike Smith on how ineffective Tuner is in this offense, then nothing will.

It will not wake him up. Two years ago, almost 99% of the posters here were saying the two coordinators were serious problems. It took Smitty that long to react and probably by pushing from AB. You need to back to the 2010 games and look at some of the posts. Turner had the zero and negative yards then. If you examine the stats of the games lost in 2010 only, you will see the terrible running efforts of Turner.

BL and MB, both of you need to respect other peoples opinions. If you can’t, maybe the two of you should have your own blog until you grow tired of each other and recognize you both are exactly a like. BL you are what you accuse other of being. SW has EARNED the right to post anyway he wants to post. You need to keep your “knee jerk” comments to yourself. Neither one of you get it no matter how many cage members tell you.

Wabe

November 12th, 2012
2:36 pm

Todd McClure on struggling run game: ‘More to it than five guys up front’

—–

That right there should send a STRONG SIGNAL to Smitty/Koetter about not what we the fans have to say about Turner, but what his own teammates are feeling. They’ve lost confidence in him just as we have.

Wabe

November 12th, 2012
2:39 pm

“That’s two totally different ballgames,” McClure said. “That’s what [ticks] me off more than anything is you guys are going to write about how bad we are up front and that we can’t get in the end zone. But there’s more to it than just blocking up front, and that’s all I’m going to say about that.

“I get really frustrated when I hear things and read things knowing there’s more to it than five guys up front but we take the brunt of the blame. I don’t want to talk about that anymore because I don’t want to say anything I regret.”

The Falcons managed 46 yards on just 18 carries against the Saints, who were the worst team in the league against the run entering the game. Atlanta running back Michael Turner, who was dropped for a loss of one yard on third down during the penultimate possession, gained just 15 yards on 13 carries.

McClure didn’t elaborate on the issues in the running game but said the struggles are about the offense overall not just the line.

“It is in every aspect of it,” he said. “But we get the ball on the one, we are expected to get it in. I just get frustrated sometimes the past couple years. There’s more to it than just lining up and blocking the guys wherever they line up. And that’s it. I can’t talk about it anymore.”

Wings

November 12th, 2012
2:40 pm

E43 – Anyone remember when Julio Jones took a pitch and ran it for a first down?

JJones took a pitchout last week against the Cowboys and ran for 18 yards. He ran around the Cowboys best defensive player Ware who got to Matt Ryan often.

Arno

November 12th, 2012
2:41 pm

I do not blame Turner one bit. Turner has been a known factor to everyone for weeks. This loss is on the coaches. Painful to see interim coach Vitt have his players better prepared!

Yeah, the Falcons will be told-you-soed by the media– but the Saints/Falcons game was the closest score of the weekend.

Wabe

November 12th, 2012
2:41 pm

Please Smitty, get the freakin’ message. He pretty much took a shot at Turner. He might’ve said he don’t wanna say anything he regrets, but that’s a pretty obvious jab at Turner’s inability to hit the holes.

Turner carried it 13 times for 15 yards. Quizz had more yards than that on one simple run where he made a move in the open field to break one for about 18-19 yards. The proof is in the pudding.

D3

November 12th, 2012
2:42 pm

Wabe — Wow, seems like a not so subtle veiled shot at Turner. Either that or Koetter / Smitty. Can’t imagine he’d be talking about Matt Ryan, the receivers, or Gonzo. Yeah, Turner is just done. I said it in the off-season and I still stand by my belief.

Wings

November 12th, 2012
2:43 pm

Wabe good post.

Wings

November 12th, 2012
2:44 pm

Wings

November 12th, 2012
2:48 pm

Arno exactly. A coaching failure.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
2:59 pm

http://blogs.ajc.com/atlanta-falcons-blog/2012/11/12/atlanta-falcons-todd-mcclure-on-struggling-run-game-more-to-it-than-five-guys-up-front/?cxntfid=blogs_atlanta_falcons_blog

Wabe posted it first, but I think everybody should click on this link just once, LOL.

There is no doubt where McClure’s ire is leading. And once you hear it from the O-line’s leader….what else is there to say, really?

Take that one however you will.

Time to make a change. McClure needs to repeat this to Koetter and Smitty. Or leave a copy of that article, printed out…taped to their office windows.

Just sayin’….

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
3:00 pm

Wow, is it good to have Seminole Warrior back.

More flavor to pour back into the Cage melting pot!

Arno

November 12th, 2012
3:14 pm

Smith will not take kindly to the locker room venting to outside ears– so McClure must be dealing with a pretty intense level of frustration…

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 12th, 2012
3:22 pm

SW, your “disconnect” theory may have legs…and starting to take its first steps, per Todd McClure.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
3:23 pm

Wings

Earned? This is a blog.

Also, have you seen SW and I with our convos? We love each other like brothers and never disrespect each other. There you go spewing nonsense again and trying to start something out of nothing. Lol

Learn to read before you criticize me for false info.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
3:24 pm

The thing about the defense…

I get what is being said about discipline and it certainly makes sense.

I think there’s an equally concerning issue – execution up front. A few thoughts to chew on, and I realize you very well could chew them up and spit them out – ;)

1) The DL is just not there. And we can break this down further in the next point.

2) Babs isn’t what he was (age), Peters is legit but probably playing at about 65%-70%…something I warned of before. He may not reach even 90% before the regular season is over, but we’ll see. Walker is a good backup. The fact that he is performing as well as the starters is less a testament to how good he is and more a testament to how degraded our starting DTs are. Jerry is a 1st round bust. Never really materialized. Travian Robertson is possibly stronger than any other guy in that unit, but isn’t ready and we wouldn’t even know if he WAS because Smitty is not going to go with a rookie unless he MUST, as he did with Corey Peters. Just ask Peter Konz, but that’s another story…

3) Abe gets held a lot, but his disappearing act is nothing unusual. Ray Edwards is a free agent bust. Really hate to say that because he is strong and has a little speed, and I thought full health would get him where we need him. But I also realize there is another reason why our DEs can’t get the job done – they aren’t always in one-on-one battles because our DTs rarely occupy more than one blocker. I’ve literally seen Kroy Biermann double-teamed out there play after play. And he’s our smallest (but fastest) DE. There always seems to be either a mammoth OT or an OT and a helper ready to take him on. Happens to Abe as well at times. Nobody has seen or heard from Sidbury or anybody else.

4) The linebackers. I notice the problems occur when Weatherspoon isn’t on the field. He’s our guy. He’s fast, intuitive, and a natural playmaker.

Here’s the deal on Stephen Nicholas – he has emerged because of Weatherspoon. Spoon accounts for so much and has to be accounted for on so many plays that it leaves Nicholas free to chase things down and make plays of his own. He couldn’t do that next to Lofton, who was a straight up run-stuffing tackler who would hit anybody that got close, but couldn’t cover an ant with his shoe. Weatherspoon can literally be anywhere, do anything. Nicholas has benefited from that.

And so it is no strange thing that when he is playing next to Dent, he can’t perform as well.

Speaking of Dent, he is exactly what Lofton was. And that’s what he was trained up to be. So really…why be disappointed in him? Somebody has to work with him on coverage. But he wasn’t even allowed to play much this year until somebody got injured…his seasoning has come in fits and starts, but he’s doing what he was kept around to replace – tackle ball carriers, support the run.

Mike Pete makes plays against the run in spots, if he’s on the field. He’s all but out of the game. We have nothing else. Robert James is a forgotten man.

5) I won’t get into the backfield because it’s known what the deal is. Willy Mo is struggling…don’t know why. He and Decoud were kicking arse early in the season. Our CBs are all veterans except McClain (who is darn good, by the way) but this is exactly where the discipline issues are. Hard to explain. Very hard. Dunta and Asante are being straight up wild out there. This game illustrated that more than most.

6) Bottom Line – there is not enough healthy individual talent in key areas in the front 7, and not enough discipline in the back 4.

Teams can’t run on you up the middle and off tackle if your front four can at least hold the point of attack and stack the line of scrimmage…and our defensive line simply cannot/is not doing that right now. Our historically best past rusher is quickly becoming just that – history.

Our best DT is Corey Peters. I say that because I’m working off of what he has become before injury vs. what Jonathon Babineaux has become due to age. It’s a close call between the two, but Peters still shows and ability to bat passes down despite his lack of health and when he gets his legs/strength back, he won’t get pushed off the ball. Problem is…and I repeat…Peters is nowhere near healthy. He’s just healthy enough to play “some” snaps. And we are playing him because we are desperate. Let’s just be freakin’ honest about that.

The LB corps is lost without Weatherspoon. I think we have forgotten about it, but this is why the injury to Tatupu was truly devastating. Tatupu had the mind, the fire, the instincts to do much of what Weatherspoon does for this defense. Hell, he had done it for Seattle when healthy. Losing that type of player and then being left with only one other type like that (Spoon) means you better not lose that one guy. And you see what kind of effect it has had. Sometimes the effect can’t be readily seen on paper. We’re a different defense with Weatherspoon on the field.

SW is right….we need more LBs. Good ones. Ones that aren’t one-trick ponies.

Overall, we need more guys that don’t rely on other guys to be able to do their own jobs right now. Because that is exactly what we have right now. Our DEs (except Biermann who should really be playing LB) can’t do anything unless our DTs are performing well. Our penetrating DTs can’t do their job unless another bigger DT is next to them and performing well. Our LBs are lost unless our best LB is on the field.

And I’m betting Nolan understands all this infinitely more than we ever will.

D3

November 12th, 2012
3:33 pm

BR — @ 3:24 PM…….perfectly said brother. So in what you just posted, what’s a bigger need with our 1st round pick: DT or LB?

crowmeat

November 12th, 2012
3:50 pm

Lets all face it..the birds have been lucky most of the year! Made saints out of Kotter and Nolan..The best game they played and won!? The Denver game when Nolan threw out all the different defensive fronts and drove Manning NUTS! For some unknown reason Nolan has refused to use that scheme again!! We had our chance’s too seal this victory..all we had to do was “cash in” at the goal line!
Ryan still can not survey the field and find the open receiver..Gonzo was open like a book all day, even on that last possession, did you see him shaking his hand in disgust because he was wide open and Ryan try’s to force it to White who was covered!?
Look folks, if you don’t have the run game to offset the defense and the pass game..you will not get the results you want!! So, my questions are these: How do you go from top shelf run game to the worst run game in the league, in 1 season, when you have basically the same players?
Why is D. Robinson playing in front of R.McClain..Robinson get beat bad Every week!? Why is A. Samuel still here? M.Turner? Why can’t the offensive line get a “push”? Why does the D get no pressure on the QB? Why can we Not stop the run up the gut?
It goes on & on and I personally believe we don’t have the right players in the key spots..Nor do we have the right brain trust in O & D coach’s..Yes Smith says the same ole tired b/s from week to week, BUT do you see the corrections from week to week? NO!!

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
3:55 pm

I would go with a tackle, a really good one just impact the game so much more. A really good tackle can impact a game more than a LB. At Tackle makes DEs and LBs better, that that impacts our secondary.

I leader LB is very important, but we have on with Spoon.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
3:57 pm

Big Ray

Great analysis, and I want to add on that. The real issue of the defensive line is only the QB pressure, not the inability to stop the run. That’s where the discipline of the LB/CB/S comes in. The gaps were filled and the RB was dead to rights in most of their touches… but they couldn’t tackle and make the plays. In turn, you force the linemen to play the gaps instead of getting to the QB unless it’s an obvious pass situation.

Also, Mike Nolan relies on zone blitzes/disguising coverages to get pressure on the QB, instead of relying on the defensive line. Problem is, he has to hold on the blitzes half the game because the players werent disciplined enough to stop the run.

To be honest, it was just a poorly executed game. They did much better the second half and that’s why the Saints only got 10 points.

I agree that Edwards is a bust. Jerry is washed up, with some flashes in the pan. Need a LB, as well. I felt Dent did a great job, but a LB is needed for depth. Yet, the defense this year is better than we had in years past. It’s the Saints… they have a potent offense.

I do agree that not having Spoon is a huge hit, but he will be back next week.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
4:02 pm

The Denver game when Nolan threw out all the different defensive fronts and drove Manning NUTS! For some unknown reason Nolan has refused to use that scheme again!

Maybe because he does not need it? I hope we don’t have a reason to put that on tape until we get to the playoffs. I do agree, I saw it against the Chiefs, and against the Broncos then it went away.

LRD

November 12th, 2012
4:02 pm

McClure… man o man.. the one thing the Falcons cannot afford, and Thomas D has done a good job thus far (as far as we can see) is a divided locker room being led by the old man in the center.
In some ways, what he had to say, needs to be said, but that is something McClure probably regrets having said on the record and not something said behind closed doors.

BUT then maybe Turner’s ego and pride will kick in and make him prove his critics wrong.. that is if he is fast enough to catch the comments

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
4:09 pm

And regarding Clabo, that is why I assume that it is not always Smittys Stubborness. If a coach is not putting his players in position to win, he loses the team. If he has a better guy on the bench, he loses the team. He has not lost this team in 4+ years, but I do sense he will if he does not institute some changes, but not looking for anything wholesale.

Actually, more than a DT or a 235 pound RB who can fall forward and push the line, somebody with fresh young legs.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
4:10 pm

Matty B

You can’t run that type of defense with Dent out there. It’s meant for versatile backs like Spoon. That’s probably why you didn’t see it often. It also didn’t help that the Falcons weren’t in many 3rd and long situations, since they couldn’t stop the run.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
4:13 pm

True BL, but we did not see it much in other games since Denver. Again, the more we use it, the less effective it be. It is high risk, we did it against Carolina on the go ahead TD in the 4th quarter and got burned. You just can’t use that too much.

D3

November 12th, 2012
4:17 pm

Not too awful much in terms of likely free agents @ DT, but here’s a guy to keep an eye on……..

Terrance Knighton (JAC) – NT – Knighton has been among the Jaguars few bright spots over the last couple years after being selected in the 3rd round out of Temple. Knighton has been known to put on extra pounds in the offseason, which can be a concern, but when in (relative) shape, he’s among the best run-stoppers in the league. In game tilted towards passing and stopping the pass, it’ll be interesting to see the value of a young, strong run-stopping nose tackle.

26 years old, 6′3, 330 lbs.

Also keep an eye on Michael Johnson, DE @ Cincy. Although they’d likely keep him, he would be worth taking a shot on. Even though I assume Ray Edwards deal probably prohibits that.

In terms of the draft, there’s quite a few big boys this year…….

Star Lotulelei – 6′3 – 320 ——— Long gone by our pick

John Jenkins – 6′3, 358 ——— As a Dawgs fan, not necessarily sure he’s worth a first rounder.

Jesse Williams – 6′3, 320 — 1st rounder

Kawan Short – 6′3, 315 — 1st or 2nd rounder

Sylverster Willaims – 6′3, 320 — 2nd or 3rd.

Anyone under 310-15 lbs, forget. We have plenty of “light butt” DT’s.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
4:31 pm

matty – you and I are talking about different roddy plays. the winning drive PRIOR to the last saints possession is where we HAD TO score – and I believe the last pass play was up the middle to roddy, deflected. That was the game right there. Somehow, the Saints handed us another opportunity – and that is where you are talking about. I think Ryan’s arm has continue to get stronger, and simply surprised Roddy by its capability. It was an odd play with Roddy running backwards.

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
4:35 pm

Let me begin by saying that I absolutely HATE losing to the Aints. I remember many seasons where my sole consolation was “at least we’re not New Orleans.” Then we got to the Super Bowl first, but blast it, they won one first. This is the perspective from which I write.

This was NOT a bad loss for this team. First, they did not do the little things that they have done consistently since MS became head coach. They beat themselves with too many little (correctible) mistakes. Since the game came down to the last play, the players got a powerful learning tool in why consistency with the little things that can be controlled (beyond physical ability) matter. The Falcons, in the MS era, have been a team that does not usually beat itself. In this game they beat themselves. This is correctible, and I trust that MS and his staff will do so! The Aints are still undisciplined and resultingly gave the Birds ample opportunity to pull out the game.

Second, we were missing key players who are assumed to be back (or more healthy) before the playoffs. Yes, the Aints were missing Sproles, but our team is a little different with Spoon and JJ at full speed. That provides hope for a different result in big games going forward.

Third, this game came at a good spot in the schedule: playoffs already a comfortable liklihood. (Not many expected that this early.) The coaching staff has seen vulnerabilities exposed. They have sufficient time to plan and scheme for how to best use the available personnel to stregthen our vulnerable areas. After this loss, they should have a very enthusiastic group of learners to work with. They can be shown on film that if they correct just a few of their mistakes, it can make a difference in the outcome of the game. Good lesson to learn and a good time to learn it. We have always known that this year will be judged by what happens in the playoffs.

In terms of our personnel issues, for this year we have the players we have. I trust this staff to get the most out of the personnel available. They know they need some form of running game to keep teams honest in the playoffs. They will do what they think gives them the best chance to win with the guys they have to work with.

Longer term, I am personnally comforted by the fact that we have AB as an owner. I can envision him watching the game with TD and saying “the right tackle position is hurting the team, we need to do something about that going forward.” (For example.)

I hate losing to the stinkin’ Aints, but I am still very optimistic about this team now and going forward!

john self

November 12th, 2012
5:01 pm

The falc

ons need jonathan dwyer as their featured back. He does not stop when he hits the line. Mr blank get in touch with the steelers now and see wht it would take to get him.

john self

November 12th, 2012
5:02 pm

Enter your comments here

falcon21

November 12th, 2012
5:02 pm

You guys have been on a roll today, good stuff. SW, darn glad to see ya.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
5:06 pm

The falcons need jonathan dwyer as their featured back. He does not stop when he hits the line. Mr blank get in touch with the steelers now and see wht it would take to get him.

Yup. We need an RB that can get a yard by himself more times than not. I am not sold on Snelling in that role, he hits the old, but he does not carry guys.

BobbyDawg

November 12th, 2012
5:14 pm

Matty Ice is tough. He has to be to take the pounding that some of these d dish out. That being said the next time we just have to get a yard to win a game I vote bootleg. It’s something the opponent hardly ever sees and MR2 is pretty quick out of the hole. With 8 men in the box he’d probably walk in.

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
5:27 pm

P.S. – TG is a beast! It has been fun watching the latter part of his career. He has spent years working very hard on his body to stay at his Hall of Fame caliber play for so long. And he’s smart about taking hits. He’s the kind of guy I want to go into battle with.

Big Lou

November 12th, 2012
5:41 pm

Man

I can’t wait to see how the Falcons respond next Sunday. Thrash is being thrown on them from everywhere. I feel bad for the Cardinals.

Ken Strickland

November 12th, 2012
5:45 pm

CAGERS-Admittedly I don’t have much to go on, but I believe our continued failures on 3rd/4th and short rests squarely in the lap of HC MSmith. Over the yrs he’s insisted on using his biggest RB, and running to the same side, inside the OTs, on every attempt. Remember last yr when we had a 3rd or 4th and short and Mularkey had JRogers in the gm, and Smitty called time out and replaced him with MTurner?

Whenever DEFs see MTurner in the gm in short yardage situations, they know it’s going to be an inside run and LBs come in low to fill any gaps. Unless you have a power blocking OL, or an OL that has no trouble making holes, it’s best to either go over or under the DL. MTurner hasn’t shown he’s capable of doing either, but JRogers has certainly demonstrated an ability to go under and around DLs. We should definitely take a long look at JSnellings ability to jump over the DL.

MTurner is still a load when he gets up a head of steam, but otherwise he’s become rather easy to bring down. When it comes to our RB situation, its time for Smitty to stop going with BIG(MTurner), and start going with BETTER(JRogers and JSnelling).

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
5:46 pm

That being said the next time we just have to get a yard to win a game I vote bootleg.

I thought about that too, but at 8-0, it ain’t worth the risk. If we can agree that anything is NOT wrong with this team, it is MR2. Let him break a leg….Now, maybe we can go wide, a toss to Quizz….

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
5:47 pm

Haven’t gotten through all the posts yet, but getting the undefeated monkey off our back helps us get back under the radar a little. That is not necessarily a bad thing. The most important thing for this team now is don’t lose back to back and hit their groove late in the season.

Ken Strickland

November 12th, 2012
5:50 pm

D3-At the risk of being redundant, I’ll say GREAT ARTICLE, as always. Tell me, what positions do you think we’ll focus on with our top 2 picks in next yrs draft, based on what you think our greatest needs have been so far?

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
5:50 pm

Bengals 31, Giants 13. I guess the Giants are done….(snicker).

BobbyDawg

November 12th, 2012
5:58 pm

Yeah, the bootleg would have to be for that special occasion like in a playoff game. No need to put your team’s life on the line if it’s not a life or death situation.

Paddy O

November 12th, 2012
6:03 pm

Giants typically go through a slump during the boring parts of the season. If they qualify for the playoffs, watch out.

Ken Strickland

November 12th, 2012
6:03 pm

Also, after reading the question that was posed to OC TMcClure about our OL run blocking problems, and reading his response, I began to wonder. He said the OL wasn’t the issue and made reference to play selection. I know he wasn’t taking a shot at new OC DKoetter, who’s done an excellent job of calling the plays.

Therefore, it has to be a shot at the conservative and predictable approach that’s characterized HC MSmith, particularly in short yardage situations. In short yardage situations, we always run the same player(MTurner), the same play(open handoff), in the same area(between the OTs), usually in the same direction(to the left), and usually with the same results(failure).

Smitty has got to keep his GRUBBY LITTLE HANDS, as BIG RAY once put it, off the OFF.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
6:10 pm

I would keep Turner in, and play action to him up the middle every play, but not give him a single carry….I bet we put up 35 points in the 1st half.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
6:34 pm

crowmeat ,

A couple of statements you make kill the rest of what you say:

Ryan still can not survey the field and find the open receiver..Gonzo was open like a book all day, even on that last possession, did you see him shaking his hand in disgust because he was wide open and Ryan try’s to force it to White who was covered!?

That’s odd. If Ryan can’t survey the field and find the open receiver, then how did he manage to pass for 411 yards? Ok, let’s try that again…

Secondly, the best QBs will miss the open guy from time to time. TG may have been disgusted about being open, but what about when he was open with 16 seconds to go, Ryan put it right on his hands…and he dropped it? Would have been a first down, would have stopped the clock, and would have extended that drive, giving us another chance. TG blew that one, not Ryan.

Third…on the long pass to Roddy White – Ryan threw the ball long, where only Roddy could get it. Roddy slowed down, then tried to speed up while running backwards. He blew it. He keeps running, turns his head in time (instead of turning his whole body while watching the ball), he makes the catch…TD…game over.

That alone makes your rant off target.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
6:40 pm

Ratty White has a pedigree of a LOOSAH!l ,

I know you’re just a troll and probably won’t show up again, but I genuinely want to thank you for posting. I haven’t laughed so hard and so freely all day long.

The fact that your team is 4-5 and ours is 8-1 puts the lie to the idea that your team is better..but then there are these little inconvenient facts.

You lost to Carolina. We beat them
You lost to Kansas City. We DESTROYED them
You lost to Washington. We beat them
You lost to Denver. We beat them

It’s okay, you just got everything backwards. We’re better, we’re winning. You’re still losing (4-5…hello…). By the way, I hope y’all like Joe Vitt. Because that’s your new head coach for the forseeable future. Sean Payton will leave that miserable bile-filled swamp for greener pastures…most likely in Texas…

Cheers!

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
6:48 pm

D3 ,

I’ll agree with MB . Give me a big, strong, talented DT. We know you have to win the battle at the line of scrimmage. We haven’t been able to push the pocket in quite some time, at least with any sort of consistency. A bit DT does that. Such a guy also will often tie up the Center and a Guard, leaving the under tackle a chance at speed/gap penetration.

We can get good LBs in later rounds. Dent is a guy we should keep around and develop…get him started heavily on pass coverage…he knows how to do the run support thing. There are always more “workable” LBs available in the draft…some guy who gets overlooked and what not…than there are credible DTs that can get started in your rotation right away.

Good DTs also make your DEs more effective.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
6:49 pm

Big Lou ,

Very good stuff on the tackling issue. You’re right…we have a lot of plays where the LBs or more specifically the DBs were in position but missed horribly. Decoud said so on the radio..acknowledging also that they cleaned it up in the 2nd half.

Yeah, looking forward to the return of Spoon. He doesn’t miss tackles much and gets fired up when he or other guys do. Spoon’s speed, angle to the ball/ballcarrier, and overall versatility from sideline to sideline cannot be overestimated.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
6:50 pm

Not to mention his “nose” or instincts.

darrell starks

November 12th, 2012
7:09 pm

Todd Mcclure is not the answer no more, Okay we made a change with Konz now it time for change at center, Falcons are not able run the ball is because of the lack of strength up the middle, Turner has no speed to hit out side so his only alternative is up the middle, SO GUEST WHAT WITH NO STRENGTH UP THE MIDDLE ON THE OL YOU WILL NOT BE ABLE RUN THE FOOTBALL.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
7:12 pm

Yea, linebackers are sorta like runningbacks, their value has diminished, and you can find workable ones in later rounds, a puzzle piece. A DT is the foundation we lack.

It would have been pretty funny had he caught it. If TG caught that ball, we would have had at least 2 more chances to throw it in the endzone, and with Iceman, you just never know….But he can’t find the open receiver.

darrell starks

November 12th, 2012
7:13 pm

OL

HOLMES, BLALOCK, KONZ, CLABO, BAKER,

This strength on OL will allow the Falcons to run up front.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
7:13 pm

Holmes is not a good run blocker.

darrell starks

November 12th, 2012
7:15 pm

Quizz need get ball more than Turner after watching the both in backfield after 9 games.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
7:16 pm

Holmes has pretty good pass rush technique, but his run D sucks. Why else does a monster tackle with good pass technique be a “reach” in the 3rd round?

darrell starks

November 12th, 2012
7:18 pm

Matty Bicep are you serious did you see him in preseason ?

HOLMES IS A BEAST BROTHER

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
7:20 pm

I want J Dyer. Is the trade deadline passed?

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
7:22 pm

He is is a beast I agree, but his run block is suspect. He was pretty good in the preseason going against other team 3rd stringers. We will find out this week, if he is pushing people around in practice, he will be out there.

darrell starks

November 12th, 2012
7:23 pm

Matty Bicep you can have Emmit Smith in backfield, if your running back is getting hit in the backfield then you have and Major issue on the OL.

GO ALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!

falcon21

November 12th, 2012
7:30 pm

You said it Darrell,

Sick & Tired Of Being Sick & Tired

November 12th, 2012
7:32 pm

D3 – Great analysis of the key issues and I totally agree with everything you’ve pointed out.

The Saints used 4 different RBs during the game and the Falcons continue to only use primarily Turner. I still can’t understand why they keep doing the same plays with Turner and expect a different results…….NOT GONNA HAPPEN!!!!!

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
7:38 pm

Feeling a little ignored here. Ya’ll want me to go away?

DePlane

November 12th, 2012
7:38 pm

1) Simple Sack – how bad of a loss is this: just a loss or a reason to believe the Falcons are the worst team in the NFL?

In the scheme of things, this loss should be a wake up call. It isn’t time to throw the baby out with the bath water, but it sure is time to change the water. The Falcons are obviously not the worst team in the NFL, but they are certainly not the best.

2) At what point did you get a bad feeling on the game? How tough was blowing a good start?

I got a bad feeling after we failed to score a touchdown and settled for three and then Ivory made our D look like they were in a circus stunt on his way to an easy 7. That was tough, and instead of being up 14-0 all of a sudden its 10-7 and the momentum has swung.

3) Is this Michael Turner or Matt Ryan’s team? Are there still handcuffs on Ryan?

It is Matt’s team, when they take the cuffs off.

4) Please, please help fix this anemic pass rush.

This was a dissapointment. Seems like I watched Brees stepup and sidestep time and time again while the rush slid on by him. The point of attack always seemed to be on the outside leaving him plenty of space to step up into. When they did collapse the pocket, dude is so slippery and knows where to move, meanwhile Jimmy Graham is seperating and Brees finds him or somebody open. We bit on the pump fake, play action and were fooled when we thought it was pass and it was run.

5) Why has the Falcons pass rush remained so terribly poor?

Its tough when your premier pass rusher is 34 and asked to do it all by himself. Does Sidbury, Matthews or Massaquoi have any thing to help? Or are they just taking up space? Who is Ray Edwards? Or more appropriately, where is he. There is too much wasted space on the roster with players who either never see the field, or don’t play up to their potential. Wouldn’t you be terrified to get in the game for a play, screw it up and never get to see the field again? Players make mistakes, and they have to be given the opportunity to learn. How can they do that ridin’ the pine? Sure, the coaches know them best and play who they think gives them the best chance. But what happens when those players don’t perform? Nothing! The other guys don’t have a chance.

Did Davis give up on the route on that bomb that was picked? Probably. Bet we don’t see him for a while. Yet two weeks ago he proved he can play. He just made a mistake.

6) How about those Turner playcalls right up the gut?

I’m sick of those. I espoused last week that I finally saw the reasoning behind doing that. To keep defenses honest. However, I’m totally flip-flopping now. Those are bone-headed wastes of valuable plays. With an arsenal like we have and as much as we are passing now we should have goal line series completely built around the passing game. Period. If you already know the result you’re going to get, why the hell do you continue to run the most predictable play in the world?

A wise man once told me “If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you always got”. Dang he was right.

7) Anyone else at punt returner?

So, is Franks being told to fair catch everything? Have the gunners on opposing special teams been so good he’s been forced to FC most of the time? I don’t know. But I do think he has more ability then we are seeing. HD to me is frail and would get eat up if we put him in there every time.
Who else ya got?

8.) Thoughts on the Mercedez-SuperDome officiating?

Home field bias. HD clearly caught that ball on replay. Head judge: “I don’t know, looks like he caught it” Upstairs: “Yeah, but you ruled it incomplete on the field”. Head Judge: Yeah, I guess I can let it stand or I might get mugged on the way out of here”.

9) Please explain the Curious Case of Michael Turner.

It’s a mystery. A real Agatha Christie novel. An inside job. Who the eff knows! Hey, you guys remember that time in your life you knew you were wrong about something and you stuck to you’re guns no matter what and wouldn’t admit it? That’s the Falcons and Michael Turner right now. I heard HCMS on the radio “Well, it’s not just one guy, its all three levels”. Hey Coach! It’s one guy, plus a coupla more guys! But mostly its one guy.

10) Has Albert Einstein pegged one Coach Mike Smith?

It’s hard to argue with your analogy D3. Maybe Coach is insane! lol! The likely story is that he is fiercely loyal, bull-headed stubborn, and slow to change. But he has proven already that he is willing to change and I hope that he realizes it now instead of later. I wonder if he has a quarter by quarter plan for working in some of the other options. I wonder if there is a pre-conceived plan on who will play, for example if Turner gets injured? There must be. Might want to try that plan sans injury to see what it will yeild.

11) What happened to Mike Nolan and his defense? Yikes

I think when they game plan for each opponent they determine what they think will work and go with it. When it doesn’t work, I give credit to Nolan for making adjustments. But they had to know Graham would be a big target. They had to know the Saints would try and run the ball early. But instead they got caught unprepared and it bit them in the arse. We literally suck at stopping the run, period.

12) Promise yourself a prize if you can ignore the MTV Sports / Entertainment Tonight media-elite-talking-heads-experts for a few weeks………..or maybe ever.

I promise I won’t let those low down, good for nothing, talking heads get to me. The game is played on the field. I saw it and I don’t need them to interpret it for me. Bottom line is we lost to the hated and wretched Saint’s. It hurts today as much as it did yesterday and it will hurt tomorrow. But it ain’t the end of the world and there’s a game to play next week. Has it burst the bubble? Yes. Should we have won that game? Yes, there is no doubt in my mind. Roddy is right; they GAVE them the game on a silver platter no less. But we get another shot at those bastards in our house and I beleive the outcome will be different.

In the mean time, the Falcons gotta lot of splaining to do at Flowery Branch, and better do some soul searching and decide who they really are.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
7:40 pm

I agree with you Whynot. Never want to lose, especially to the Aints, just need to get past the Undefeated talk. It becomes such a distraction.

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
7:41 pm

DePlane

November 12th, 2012
7:49 pm

D3, blog monster alert! I usually don’t respond directly to all your questions but this time I did and it got eaten!

falcon21

November 12th, 2012
7:51 pm

“Hit their groove late in the season”, I totally agree Whynot Us.

darrell starks

November 12th, 2012
7:52 pm

Are the Falcons a flawed team ?

RANK 19TH ON DEFENSE IN PASSING

RANK 25TH ON DEFENSE IN RUNNING

Falcons must get better on defense specially against the run.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
7:59 pm

Agree with you 21 and W, now time to lick our wounds, get off the news, let the undefeated talk stop, and remember our goals.

I saw ESPN and they were doing the same old falcon schik, and Carter said, “I think Atlanta is going to be a force to be reckoned with in the Playoffs”.

falcon21

November 12th, 2012
8:05 pm

Yep Matty, it’s time to make some adjustments and get on with the season. The loss is out of the way and I hope Smitty learned a little something from it.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
8:10 pm

Actually 21, if we are gonna lose, I am glad we lost exactly like this. If we lost by turning the ball over a bunch, it could be brushed off as a bad day, but this is causing soul searching.

It exposed our weakness to get a yard, and I think it is reaching a fever pitch.

Also, in years past, Turner was statistically productive that can justify him getting the ball, but he is not this year. He is not in that 4.5 YPC range.

falcon21

November 12th, 2012
8:23 pm

Oh yes we have problems in more ways than one. We will go with what we have, that is the Smitty way and has been for years. 8 and 1 is great but a loss in the first round would suck. I guess we can hope for a bye.

D3

November 12th, 2012
8:27 pm

Whynot — Certainly not my friend. You’re always appreciated in the Cage. Sometimes the flow of the Cage is kind of weird. Sometimes we just post, others we respond to certain people, but your excellent comments and insight are always welcome. Not too worried about losing to the Cardinals RE: your comment about the losing back-to-back. Smitty I think is undefeated after a loss or something like that. I am worried about our upcoming rest of the schedule. No gimmes in there and if we all of sudden lose to Tampa Bay, true worry would / could start to set in. Smitty usually finds a way to get things fixed, so let’s hope that’s the case. Hate having all these division games bunched all up at the end.

DePlane — Post is out.

D3

November 12th, 2012
8:33 pm

Ken — Thanks. I’ll elaborate on it a touch more tomorrow, but I think it’s finally time to draft a dominant DT that is well over 315 lbs. It’s so much easier to build around a core guy like that instead of the other way around. There’s a plethora of big boys in this years draft. I would then say RB or CB in the second round. We may be OK for one more year with Samuel, DRob, McClain, and Owens for one more year, but we’re going to have to invest in CB at some point. I also really believe we’re going to have to cut deep (Turner, Grimes, Babs) and spend somewhere in free agency. More on it tomorrow. Gotta hit the pillow.

Ken Strickland

November 12th, 2012
8:37 pm

We’re now seeing the negative side of playing 3 CBs and 2 LBs. Don’t get me wrong, it can work to perfection, but in order for that to happen we have to somehow get better production from our current DL, or we have to seriously upgrade it. I think our OL situation will be resolved as soon as OT LHolmes is ready, or is given a chance to start, and the decision is made to finally replace TMcClure.

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
8:39 pm

Thanks D3. Not looking to turn this into a rah-rah blog, but after a couple of hours it seemed like my comments had been ignored. I understand that some are less optimistic about this team, coaching staff and front office than I am. That is legitimate. But nobody wants to try to butt in on a conversation if they believe that their input is going to be ignored. I am not oversensitive. Call me an idiot. Just don’t ignore me if you want me to continue participating on occasion. BTW, I finally finished reading all the comments and enjoy the knowledgable fans here.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
8:39 pm

Whynotus ,

Good posts. You should post more. Then we remember you and realize you’re not a troll…and read more of your posts. ;)

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
8:41 pm

And D3 is another fan just like the rest of us. He does this blog “pro bono.” So kinda hard for him to keep up with all of us, and the fact is…we’re all talking to each other. So conversations get all kinds of mixed up.

Matty Bicep had to aggravate the shiz out of a handful of us before we realized he was here. Now he’s one of the crew…. :lol:

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
8:46 pm

Thanks Big Ray. Suggestion noted. I post when I have time and something to say. Sorry if I got obnoxious there… :) This is the best Falcons blog I have found.

JB Falcon

November 12th, 2012
8:52 pm

Wow, left the old post last night and it’s taken me over an hour to catch up. Looks like everyone has posted some very good ideas and questions and possible solutions. The game itself has posed some weakness’s that are definitely going to have to be addressed. We’re still in the driver’s seat so it will be interesting to see what the FO will do to counteract our obvious flaws.

falcon21

November 12th, 2012
8:54 pm

Whynot Us, I did respond to your post but failed to welcome you to the Cage, my bad. welcome to the Bird Cage and you are right, this is the best darn Falcons blog going, thanks to D3.

JB Falcon

November 12th, 2012
8:56 pm

Whynot, Welcome! Pull up a chair.

SW, glad to see you back!

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
8:58 pm

Thanks falcon21. D3 is what got me here. I will continue to read him, regardless of how often I post.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
9:03 pm

D3 ,

My concerns with the remaining schedule have to do with the 4 Divisional games we have. We know we can beat Carolina, even though they’ll roll up plenty of yards on the ground. Tampa beat us last year, though…and those guys are MUCH better this year. They are far more disciplined, far more focused, and have weapons they were previously lacking. We can’t go into a game against them with a lack of discipline on defense or we will get ROASTED. We have two games against them.

Of course, we have our rematch with the Saints in our own dome. The main thing is to focus and buckle down. Despite the records, none of these games are gimmes, just like you said. Tampa is flying high and enjoying the success. They’re above .500 now and they are legitimately so . Three wins in a row…albeit against the loser Raiders and Chargers..but the Vikings are a legit team, and they’ll probably beat Carolina before we meet them.

We just can’t take them lightly. Doug Martin has turned out to be a pretty good RB…something we have trouble with. Vincent Jackson is a legit deep threat and #1 WR. Josh Freeman is not a high yardage guy, but his yards per completion is leading the League and his TD-to-INT ratio is slightly higher than Matt Ryan’s. Not to mention he’s thrown for 18 TDs (5 INTs), a legit stat.

It’s not that we can’t beat these guys…it’s that we can’t afford sloppy tackling and blown assignments against them.

The one good thing is their young defense isn’t stopping anybody. Their ranked 28th overall.

But here’s the ironic part – They’re 1st against the run. Almost nobody runs on these guys. But they’re last against the pass. Meaning they can’t generate a pass rush, most likely.

We should have a field day against them. But you have to wonder about that when we are committed to running the ball. Ryan can shred them. Probably throw 4 TDs. But we will run the ball to make sure the pass stays open and if we come out there with Mike Turner, they’ll eat that up and we’ll stall one drive after another.

Gotta make changes before then…

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
9:05 pm

BR, thanks for making me feel part of the club.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
9:06 pm

Whynotus ,

You’re not obnoxious at all. ;)

I actually remember you, but people are creatures of habit. Once we “get to know” each other, we talk more often. Some of us seek others out more than the rest of the group. We “fight” on the regular too, but don’t let some “outsider” come in here….. :lol:

It’s all good, looking forward to more of your posts, and yes…we all have other things to do, so understand if you don’t have time to post, we just heartily welcome intelligent football fans of the Falcon variety.

Roger

November 12th, 2012
9:07 pm

Seems it is obvious to media elites, ATL fans, and everybody else that Michael Turner’s skills are in serious decline. So why can’t the Falcons coaches see it, and if they are seeing it why aren’t they doing something about it? It’s almost like they have blinders on, or are in serious denial. How many -1 carries or sluggish runs into piles of defenders do you have to see before you make the call that the guy is a relic?

As a loyal Falcons fan I’m tuning in to the next game as usual, and if I see Michael Turner again taking a handoff and sluggishly running into a pile of defenders, I’m gonna faint. I mean, the playoffs and Superbowl are at stake here, people. Let’s get serious!

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
9:11 pm

@Big Ray (9:03 post) – Well said!

JB Falcon

November 12th, 2012
9:12 pm

BR, spot on about the Bucs. The stats also showed that the Aints were also weak against the run and the pass and you see how that worked out.
Gotta make changes before then…BR
You got that right!

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
9:16 pm

JB ,

Sometimes I just skim over all the posts. So many good ones, then I find one I just have to respond to, then I lose my place….you can get stressed out trying to keep up! LOL.

I wish everyone could have heard what ESPN’s John Clayton had to say about the Falcons. He said when you have a record like ours you can afford to sit back and assess where you need to tweak, such as determining who our short yardage RB or goal line RB should be. He said when you don’t have a great record like that, you don’t have time to tweak anything because you are too busy filling up crater-sized holes.

That does lend some perspective. We got new Coordinators. That has paid obvious dividends even if we, in our genius football minds, can find ways to do things better than they can do them. :roll:

We drafted a few guys at a few positions. We have more drafting to do. More free agent moves to make. More sacrifices and cuts to make as well. It’s coming, it’s inevitable. But it can’t all be done overnight. We can only win or lose the games in front of us. Can’t play postseason games until the postseason comes. In the meantime, tweak this, work on that, fix that.

Some things take a while to change. Like moving from your starting RB to a new guy, or finding the right balance of how to use your RBs. I think we about have the WRs worked out.

Considering how many problems we as fans can find, you’d think we’d have a worse record. But we don’t. We are 8-1 and that is IN SPITE of the problems.

I hate Smitty’s slow as hell methodical attitude when it comes to change sometimes. But I have seen that he can change, and that he is not easily satisfied. I don’t know if anybody was more pissed than him after losing to NO. I mean, the look on his face…well, time for some soul-searching about certain issues.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
9:17 pm

Matty Bicep ,

Right on, bro’!

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
9:18 pm

BR, nothing wrong with our division playing tough, we need the competition. Nightmare scenario #1 is going 16-0 and being one and done. Ain’t got to worry about that anymore. As Smitty said, they take the season in quarters, they are 0-1.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
9:19 pm

Whynotus ,

Thankyou, sir!

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
9:22 pm

MB ,

I think your point about the record being a distraction has more merit than it has been given. Humility is hard to maintain when you have yet to take a hit. You begin to feel invincible.

I think that is one reason why Smitty was so upset when Asante and crew celebrated the interception to the point of where they drew a penalty. Not only was that a stupid penalty, but it belied their issues – the game was early and Brees is never to be underestimaged. If he has 30 seconds to work with, his team can score. Our guys got on their high horse…then had it shot out from under them.

What’s worse is it was our veterans. Smitty was so right…and how must they feel about celebrating now , having lost the game?

Humility. Comes in different forms, some more painful than others. But very necessary.

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
9:23 pm

Turner has definitely lost a step. However, his game has always included an element of being stopped frequently for little or no gain. He isn’t popping as many big gains as he used to, but he is still popping one every once in awhile. Smitty knows he needs to win in the playoffs this year. They have seven games left to figure out the best way to develop a semblance of a running game with the tools at their disposal. I’m not gonna bet against my team finding a way to do what they need to do after this kind of start.

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
9:26 pm

@Big Ray (9:16 post) – what he said!

Chop Buster

November 12th, 2012
9:34 pm

Jay Glazer reporting Falcons are set to release Ray Edwards. Wow! But doesn’t surprise me.

http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/blog/eye-on-football/20957288/report-falcons-set-to-release-defensive-end-ray-edwards

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
9:37 pm

Didn’t see that coming??? I even remember seeing him make a good play in the NO game. Is this for real?

Die Hard Falcon

November 12th, 2012
9:39 pm

This was a really painful loss to watch. I went to bed at 7pm last night, literally physically ill after watching the sewer-city aints blemish our record.
I am very concerned about our ability to pick up the 3rd or 4th and short or goal to go situations, we will NEED to be able to do this in bigger more important games, especially in the playoffs.
I have been a big defender of Turner, but I agree w/ D3, he looks as though he’s not even trying half the time, we need to bring in someone w/ some attitude who runs w/ ill intentions when he hits the hole or the wall, just to have a true wrecking ball.

On Defense I don’t know why we cannot generate a pass rush, or why we only have forced 1 turnover in the last 3 games, it’s like we just forgot how to flock to the ball or something.
Besides that stand just inside the 2:00 minute warning, I was also sick on the play after we got it back when Roddy got behind the defense; if he hadn’t turned to face the ball, and would’ve just kept running, I think he would’ve caught it and scored.
I just want to forget about this game it made me sick, I’m already tired of the pundits claiming the Falcons are a fraud, RISE UP!

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
9:40 pm

Roger ,

I don’t know. My guess is you keep “going with your horse” until you know the horse is simply no longer able. At least it’s a change that can be feasibly made. I reckon Smitty and his staff are/were going to keep their #1 RB in play as long as they could. Turner had regressed last year, despite what the stats said. But this year, he has regressed a good bit from even that .

At some point, you need to make a change. It’s not always easy to know when that change should occur…or how.

Look at it this way….we’re just talking about changing RBs.

In NY (Jets), Philadelphia, and other places…their talking about changing QBs.

falcon21

November 12th, 2012
9:41 pm

Nice find Chop, wow!

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
9:42 pm

You want players who can make plays. Edwards has not made enough of them, but he has made some. If this ist true, the coaching staff must believe that they have young unproven talent that can make at least as many plays as Edwards has. Interesting…

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
9:44 pm

Still do not believe that there is a disconnect at the Branch.

Check out what McClure had to say today…

http://blogs.ajc.com/atlanta-falcons-blog/2012/11/12/atlanta-falcons-todd-mcclure-on-struggling-run-game-more-to-it-than-five-guys-up-front/

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
9:44 pm

ChopBuster ,

Thanks for the link. There it is…real changes being made…even if they’re not ones that you see coming. Somebody is hard at work in Flowery Branch.

Here’s the real question…what’s the next move?! What are they planning?

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
9:46 pm

@DieHard Falcon – Agreed that it always sucks losing to the Aints.

Chop Buster

November 12th, 2012
9:46 pm

Whynot I checked FoxSports and CBS and it’s on both, as well as on the Falcons message board saying Jay Glazer tweeted this.

Chop Buster

November 12th, 2012
9:47 pm

BR that’s what I’m waiting for…who is going to fill his vacancy? One of the other DEs (Massaquoi or Matthews), another RB?

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
9:48 pm

Seminole Warrior ,

My brother, it’s already been posted. We are all over it, though we have missed you sorely.

Did you see what was posted above your post? Ray Edwards is history…something is up. Changes being made.

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
9:49 pm

@Big Ray – we’ll just have to wait and see. …Of course, since we’re fans we will debate and speculate what we believe they should be planning! :)

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
9:51 pm

Thanks for the good info @Chop Buster!

Wabe

November 12th, 2012
9:51 pm

Wow, Edwards gone…

Something on the horizon that we should know about?

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
9:53 pm

Chop Buster ,

Wish I knew. You never can tell with the KGB operatives in Flowery Branch, lol.

Edwards may be a simple victim of a bigger or different move. It may be that his roster spot isn’t the only thing that needs to go. I hope all or most of his guaranteed salary has already been paid.

We could be going after another RB. Or an O-lineman, or a D-lineman for all I know.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
9:54 pm

Whynotus ,

This may sound crazy, but I fee like a kid about to go trick ‘r treating…

falcon21

November 12th, 2012
9:54 pm

Kinda want to see more of Massaquoi here. Dude is quick.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
9:54 pm

McClure is showing the leadership that this team desperately needs. Someone has to call out Mike Smith and this approach. And why not have the crafty old veteran do it. He knows he is on his last ride so what does he have to lose? Great move, Mud Duck. I totally agree with you.

Edwards first. Next, maybe Robinson or Samuel. Hell, maybe even Clabo. High priced players that are not living up to the standards.

I can not wait to see how Smitty spins the Edwards release. And given the statement today by McClure, I wonder what Edwards will have to say when his time comes to comment.

Could Smitty be losing a litte of his luster in the locker room? Stay tuned. Things may get interesting.

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
9:56 pm

Off to sleep. Thanks for letting me join in the conversation. G’night Cage.

Wabe

November 12th, 2012
9:56 pm

Trade deadline’s come and gone…

What FA’s are there really out there?

No way they just decided to get rid of him without something else being put into place. Makes no sense to me.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
9:56 pm

That is what I like about TD, MS, and the staff. It may take them a while, but they will “admit” to having made a mistake (though not in words) and will go about fixing it.

Whatever this move is…and I have trouble thinking that the release of Edwards is all that is happening…it’s a calculated, planned move. Has to be. There is not much “spur of the moment” stuff that comes out of the Flowery Branch or the FO. Even the Julio Jones trade was well-planned in advance. It came as a shock to US, but it was very much a planned event.

Matty Bicep

November 12th, 2012
9:58 pm

That is what I like about TD, MS, and the staff. It may take them a while, but they will “admit” to having made a mistake (though not in words) and will go about fixing it.

It is the process.

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
9:58 pm

@Big Ray (9:54 post) – Have fun my friend!

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:00 pm

BR,

Missed it and thanks. Been preaching it for a long time and now to have a solid leader in the club house like Mud Duck verify the possibility is huge. Stay tuned. More to come on this I think as the crafty vet was very careful not to call out a fellow teammate or throw anyone under the bus.

Love the wake up call that was the Edwards release. I would love to know who made the call; TD or Rich because I am sure it was not Smitty. This is not in his DNA I think.

His $12 million in guaranteed money is already paid so there should not be a cap hit, right D3?

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
10:00 pm

SW ,

It will be interesting. Smitty doesn’t give much away to the press, though. I don’t know if he’s losing luster in the locker room. Remember, McClure made it clear he was angry with the press for associating the entirety of the running game problems with the offensive line and nobody else. He said “you guys will write it this way.”

He may have been calling out Smitty (or Koetter), or maybe Turner himself. I don’t know. Maybe you’re right and all roads lead to Smitty. But if he’s losing locker room luster, then we should be worse than 8-1, I think. We don’t show signs of implosion from what I’ve seen.

As for Edwards, WTF can he say? Dude has been the least productive defensive lineman not named Peria Jerry. Seriously.

falcon21

November 12th, 2012
10:00 pm

Have a good one, Whynot Us. I hope you change your screen name or handle, LOL.

Whynot Us

November 12th, 2012
10:01 pm

Can’t believe it… Berman just gave kudos to the Birds! OK, really checking out now.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:02 pm

BR, I am hoping that Nolan is setting the stage for a 3-4 transition.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
10:02 pm

SW ,

You really think so? Because if it wasn’t Smitty’s call or he didn’t at least agree with it…then there’s more than a disconnect. If somebody higher than Smitty made that call and it didn’t have anything to do with a financial transaction, then I have to say Smitty is not long for his position. That’s all I can think of on that front.

If Smitty doesn’t make that call and TD or McKay does…and they don’t have plans to bring in another free agent…or something like that…then Smitty isn’t losing the locker room. He’s losing his office.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
10:03 pm

SW ,

Oh man…you are SO speaking my language with the 3-4 transition talk. I have waited and waited for this. Can’t happen this season, but it sure can happen next season.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:06 pm

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
10:06 pm

http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/8625620/ray-edwards-cut-atlanta-falcons

I have no idea if this means anything different. Why wait until now to cut a guy you have guaranteed to pay a couple mil to? I still don’t think this move stands on its own. Even if it just means more PT for another guy on the roster (Sidbury, maybe?).

Must be a more long term move…as SW suggested. But still….

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
10:08 pm

Payoffs is right….but all of this will be forgotten by the masses if the Falcons become and remain a perennial powerhouse that wins playoff games…and a SB.

Here’s the thing. As much as Blank wants to win a SB, he also wants to host one. Or two. Or ten.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:10 pm

BR,

It will be interesting to see how it is spinned. Why release him now? You know it will raise eyebrows. You know questions will be raised.

They did not think enough of Biermann to leave him in as the starter long term, thus the move to get Edwards anyway. SIdbury is in witness protection and there is no way that a rookie (Matthews or the Troy University kid we drafted) is ready to step in right in the middle of a playoff run.

I think that the front office is probably seeing the success of the Houston 3-4 and TD knows that he could get the players needed to take off in that scheme. This upcoming draft is loaded with them. And some of the key pieces are already in place on the team.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:12 pm

Mud Duck’s comments and this move suggest that there is an issue, a rising element of discord, at the Branch.

Think about it. When have you EVER know McClure to vent to the media about anything? Hell, he was quiet during the Vick and Petrino scandals. If he said nothing then, you know he really must be pissed to comment so strongly now.

Just saying…

Michael

November 12th, 2012
10:13 pm

First, D3 you nailed it regarding Turner. We greatly appreciate the quality he gave us but his time is past. I almost kicked in my TV after Douglass caught that ball on the 1 yard line and I’m screaming for them NOT to put Turner in the game and give him the ball. And what do they do? Give him the ball 8 yards behind the line of scrimmage and he actually loses yards. Rodgers is quicker and Snelling has proven he can run hard between the tackles. Why not them? And yes, let’s give the speedster Smith a chance.

As for the return game, I was thinking the same thing you were. Why is this guy fair catching everything? They need to give Chris Owens a chance. The guy has tremendous speed and vision. Why does Smith hate this guy so much? Or, they should let Antone Smith give it a shot. Anything is better than waving for a fair catch all game long.

As for the defense, I’m not too displeased. Once again, Nolan did a masterful job in making halftime adjustments only giving up 10 pts in the second half. They were also hurt by not having Spoon out there covering Graham. He is the only linebacker capable of adequately doing that, so not having him crippled what Nolan was able to scheme. Given those constraints, I would say he did excellent considering the hand he had to play. Also remember Peters is not yet fully back to full strength. And, he wanted the trio of Grimes, Samuel and Robinson specifically to match up with the Saints receivers. The loss of Grimes cancelled that as well. Given that his D has faced Romo, Manning, Rivers,RGIII, and Cam, I’m not ready to shift the burden of this loss to his shoulders, not even a little.

As for the O-Line, I have to say I did see a few holes at times, but unfortunately, by the time Turner got to them, they had been filled. As McClure stated (recent post by ESPN’s Yasinskas) it’s not all on the OL.

At the end of the day, Mike Smith is a totally incapable head coach. I wanted him out last year and nothing has changed in my view. He is about as worthless as a milk bucket under a bull. Perhaps instead of taking notes on the sidelines during games for Monday meetings, he should actually watch the game, motivate his players, and when necessary, pull a Bill Parcells and get in Matt Ryan’s face when he does something stupid. He lacks the leadership skills to aid players in elevating their games to another level and developing a cold, calculating killer instinct. I don’t say this because they lost one game. That has always been my assessment of Smith.

At the end of the day, it’s just one loss and the additions of new coordinators will make the difference this year between losing and winning once we get into the playoffs. Rise up!

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 12th, 2012
10:15 pm

Have to admit, I’m not entirely surprised of Edwards release. IMO, I don’t think we will make a deal, or bring in someone off the streets. I think we will bring up Travian R. to help stop the run…and try out Mattews or Massaquoi at DE. IMHO.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:17 pm

BR, I have no problem with him wanting to host the Super Bowl. But the cost to the average Georgian is not viable at this time. In a time when everyone is tightening their budgets, how in good faith can we look to spend $300 to 600 million dollars of tax payer money to build a damned stadium?

If there are issues with the Dome, then why not remodel it and update it to satisfy those issues? Give the State a sizeable check towards those renovations like he did before in excahnge for more revenue. Also, pick up the tab for the new College Football Hall of Fame that will be built on GWCC land near the Dome.

It is not the “ice storm” that cost ATL another Super Bowl. It is not the issues with the Georgia Dome that cost us another game. Hell, the NFL told Tampa that RJ Stadium is not viable anymore. If you have ever been there, you know they are full of crap!! Ray Jay is a fine venue!!

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:21 pm

http://www.atlantafalcons.com/news/article-1/Transcript-Mike-Smith-Monday-News-Conference/0effe9f1-e16f-4df8-8063-63a9f4178ac3

These comments do not sounds like a head coach that was looking to release his starting defensive end by the end of the day.

Wabe

November 12th, 2012
10:22 pm

Man, SW talkin’ bout 3-4 defenses has me geeeeeeeeeeeked.

Been wanting it for a while, but, still plenty of season left, and we gotta make noise *this season*.

falcon21

November 12th, 2012
10:24 pm

As much as I agree with you SW, the new stadium is gonna happen. Our concerns or worries don’t mean crap.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 12th, 2012
10:24 pm

Edwards was expendable…and if this move was not facillitated through Smith, It was meant to put him on notice…and other players that aren’t performing to their capabilities.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:25 pm

If his partner Bernie Marcus can give $250 million dollars for the construction and equipping of the Georgia Aquarium, surely AB can give up the same to facilitate a comprehensive overhaul and refresh of the Georgia Dome.

Hell, it only cost $185 million ($114 million FEMA dollars) to refurb the SuperDome and it is hosting the Super Bowl this year.

Just saying..

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:28 pm

Wabe, it would be a gift to make that transition. And it would work in ATL. Trust me. The 3-4 is the way for this team to go defensively. The talent is out there to grab in the draft and secure it for a quick transition. Wade Phillips did it; MIke Nolan can do it too.

F21, I agree. The stadium is on the way as are the PSLs. My days as a season ticket holder are numbered. And the Falcons are going to find out that PSLs are not a wise move in the ATL market in my opinion.

Truth, I certainly hope so.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 12th, 2012
10:31 pm

Yeah SW, I’m starting to buy in your “disconnect” theory too.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:34 pm

Truth, we will see. But the TeePee simply calls them as I see them. There is something brewing at the Branch.

Wabe

November 12th, 2012
10:35 pm

If anything, I hope this sends a message to Smitty…

The guys upstairs can see whose not performing. So, being so insistent on this loyalty you have to guys who aren’t performing ain’t gonna cut it [IE - M. Turner]. Shake things up, or we will for you.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:39 pm

Wabe, I feel you. But I want to hear from the Branch tomorrow. How will they spin this? And most of all, I want to hear from Edwards. I am sure he was shocked and will most likely say he is nothing but a sacrifical lamb.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
10:39 pm

SW ,

Agreed on the stadium…but once Roger Goodell began meeting with some folks about this new stadium/dome…I knew the fix was in. You have a million valid points, but you’re preaching at the choir, I’m afraid.

On the 3-4 defense…I pray you are as right about that move as you were about us getting Sean Weatherspoon. Seriously. (Let’s hope you don’t have a Ziggy Hood moment, LOL…I still think we missed on that one at the time, but I guarantee we wouldn’t have used him properly either).

I have no idea what the deal is with Smitty and this release. He’s not much of a talker and I can’t see why he’d have anything to say about releasing a starter/veteran. Schultz’s article is somewhat revealing…he talks about how few snaps Edwards was playing for us this year, particularly in light of what Nolan has been able to do with Biermann. Hmmmmm.

I don’t know if Smitty will even try to spin this one. I couldn’t guess at how much or how little he had to do with Edwards’ release.

But I do know that if he had almost nothing to do with it and it was predominately about Edwards’ production…then Smitty is losing a hold on the power he’s supposed to have. That’s why I’m not so sure about this one way or the other.

You can’t have a HC in a tenuous position and have the team succeed in spite of it. Just doesn’t work that way. But I guess that since we won’t have the info, all we can do is choose to believe whatever we choose to believe. I don’t know what to believe.

But we will know something soon enough…

I agree…kudos to McClure for telling it like it is without telling on someone.

Michael

November 12th, 2012
10:39 pm

Before the season began, I suggested they move to a 3-4 scheme with Biermann as a Kevin Greene type standup DE/OLB type to rush the passer with Spoon on the strong side, Dent and Nicholas on the inside. You play to your strengths and that is far better than what they are doing in hindsight.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:40 pm

As far as a running back, the TeePee has had an early eye on Stanford’s Stephan Taylor. I like what I see in him as well as his upside/versatility.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
10:44 pm

You also have to wonder how much input Mr. Nolan had on this.

How well do he and Smitty see eye-to-eye?

See, now we have opened up the conspiracy theory pot. Of course, it’s not a “theory” if it’s real…

But I’m not gonna go there right now. We’re dealing with the KGB…we can speculate til our nads fall off, but that will get us nowhere (except our minds off of the lone season loss, I suppose).

I’d have been more interested if Turner had been kicked to the curb. As it is, THAT is what really needs to happen. Probably won’t, though.

My guess is that if Smitty and his staff are listening and really seeing what they should on tape, they’ll start games off with Quizz behind the quarterback.

I mean, wasn’t it Mike Smith himself who said he thought Quizz was a three-down RB? Time to put your money where your mouth is.

I’d even try Snelling in that role to shake things up. Leave/save Turner, if he’s to remain on the roster, for the second half and big leads.

Big Ray

November 12th, 2012
10:45 pm

Anyway, I’m out for now.

Wonder what will be said tomorrow. Or the next day. Or whenever. Wonder what else will happen?

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:46 pm

Michael, Try this one.

Bier Truck at the strong, Spoon and Dent inside, and Nicholas on the outside. Dent, I think could be a force inside in the 3-4. Correct me, UGA fans, but that is where he exploded onto the scene with UGA, right?

Spoon can play any LB position and the other two are better in coverage with Bierman the best in run defense and blitzing from the strong side. And Nicholas would be a nice compliment at WLB.

Nicholas is not in the mix for me in the 3-4. Took light in the paints, not effective enough in covera

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:48 pm

BR, you know I have been on that disconnect train for well over a year now.

Nicholas would be an interim for me in the 3-4; would move him to special teams where he could be my ace in the mold of Coy Wire a few years ago.

SeminoleWarrior

November 12th, 2012
10:48 pm

Breaking right myself, Cage. See you all on the other side.

Coop

November 12th, 2012
11:04 pm

I am surprised by Edwards release. I agree with others it was a sign to put the team on notice. I think Smitty gets fired if the Falcons don’t play for the NFC championship and at least get real close to winning. I have a sense that Arthur is tired of Smitty’s excuses. Maybe he’s saying win, or I’ll grab Gruden.

Coop

November 12th, 2012
11:15 pm

Ok, I’m not a huge fan of Edwards. Never really thought it would work. Digressing, all the problems with any D start with DT. I’ve been preaching this for 5 years going back to when I wanted Dorsey over Ryan. Anyway, DEs are normally only as affective as the anchor in the middle.

Regardless, this move is a bit disturbing. Cutting a guy 9 games into the 2nd year of a 5-year deal smacks of problems. We’ll almost certainly have dead money next year if not longer…

He’s not the worst DE we have…

He’s good for backup or trade in off-season…

Either he pissed someone off, or we are making a roster move. If the latter, what? Was it just to save money? Surely there is someone else we could cut to make a roster spot (James, Cone, etc.). Or was this simply to send a message? Again, couldn’t we cut Clabo or Turner to send a message? Less costly, right?

Finally, who the hell are we go an bring in who isn’t already on the roster?

No, something is way off here. This could be FB knee-jerking or the signs or fracture in the locker room.

Maybe Lofton was right…

Smitty has me concerned.

darrell starks

November 13th, 2012
12:13 am

Coop, I totally agree you cut Ray Edwards in the middle of the season, this make no sense at all.

You already is struggling with the lack of depth on defense why cut another body with only 7games remaining ?

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

darrell starks

November 13th, 2012
12:20 am

Sidbury Time ? Finally after 4years maybe he could shine or are the Falcons trying get Steven Jackson ? I hope both.

IF THE FALCONS STEVEN JACKSON TRUST ME THEY WILL GO 2 SUPERBOWL THIS YEAR.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!

Michael

November 13th, 2012
12:57 am

SW,

Yeah I wrote Dent should be inside, not outside. But I still like Biermann outside on the weak side with Abraham. That way, for the LT, it’s pick your poison as to who you choose to block. And if the offense rolls over help, it creates problems for them up the middle for Peters and Babineaux to capitalize. Spoon is better in coverage because of his atleticism…lind of a Derrick Brooks type who can play run and cover a TE. And if they float Moore a little more toward the line, he could cause even more havoc.

DHunt

November 13th, 2012
1:03 am

I really am going to try to keep this short and sweet. And I apologize in advance that I haven’t had time to read all the exceptional responses thus far, but seeing as how it’s already up to seven pages, I guess I have a weeks worth of reading to catch up on. Another great installment D3, and let me commend you for not going off the deep end while still hitting some nails squarely on some heads.

1) It’s not a bad loss by any stretch of the imagination. It’s a division game, on the road, against a team that has played well below it’s potential for most of the year, and said team had everything to prove in this one and brought their A game. Yet, but for several totally unforced errors, The Falcons played more than well enough to win. Anyone who reads more into this loss than that, has an ax to grind and and agenda that involves hating the Falcons.

2) I honestly never had a bad feeling about this game. The whole time I expected that we would find a way to win. I didn’t really think we would lose until Tony G dropped that last pass. We gave up the lead after a good start, and I think we did an excellent job of getting back in a position to still win the game.

3) This is obviously Matt Ryan’s team. That also means Matt Ryan has to take a lot of the critique when the team doesn’t perform up to standards. Matt Ryan had over 400 yards so to some people that means he had a helluva game. But playing from behind for most of the game will tend to allow you to pad some passing stats (one reason why the Falcons defense is low in that department, because other teams have played from behind all year). And I know there were extenuating circumstances, but MR2 had several chances to win the game yesterday, and he didn’t make it happen. Both passes into the endzone on that fateful goal line situation were not placed where they should have been to give Tony and Roddy a chance to make the play.

4) Firing Ray Edwards won’t do the trick. We’ll see if the personnel change is accompanied by some schematic changes. I still think Jerry was playing better than Vance or Cory, just based on the fact that he routinely got into the backfield. The entire line (except John A) is getting stood up far too often.

5) The Falcons defense has got to want it more. The line needs to step it up, and we can’t let receivers run free for quick passes. We also need to send extra pressure up the middle more often.

6) Turner up the gut is fine when it works and anathema when it doesn’t. Turner getting hit 2 yards in the backfield is not necessarily a Turner problem, although a case could be made that he should be able to see that penetration and avoid it, which he seems incapable of doing. I can’t believe the same line that made him a 1300+ yd running back is all of a sudden totally inept, so I have to think he has lost the ability to do whatever he was doing over the past few years. I’m more than willing to give the next man up a shot to get the job done.

7) The coaches aren’t stupid. When the game was on the line, they put the guy back there who should be back there. And even though he wasn’t able to make the big play happen, we all knew he at least was going to give it a try. I wonder, especially with Julio being dinged up, if they are willing to make that a full time thing now, but I doubt it.

8.) When you can’t even get a replay showing what the penalty was, and you can see that the official making a bad call is completely out of position to make said call, it makes you wonder what is really happening. But we’ve had to overcome the officials in a number of games this year; they don’t respect the Falcons any more than the media. They didn’t cost us the game.

9) Time to make a change. And again, other than the one failed shot at the goal line, the Falcons did not have Turner on the field when the game was on the line. That indicates that they know they have better options. Time to give those better options a more opportunities.

10) Coach Smith does not call the offense or the defense during games. He isn’t even holding a play sheet. Stop blaming him for what goes on in game. If anything, I wonder if it wasn’t his call to keep Turner out when the game was on the line, and to put HD back to catch that punt instead of Franks.

11) Some great adjustments were made at the half. The sAints only had 41 yards rushing in the 2nd half, and other than the one big play by the Jimmy Graham, which was actually a big blunder by Willie Mo for biting so hard on the underneath route, the defense shut down the sAints most potent offensive weapon as well. Nolan played it a bit too safe against Brees in the first half, but a lot of that was execution, and Nick was totally mismatched against Graham for far too long which basically gave the Saints 14 first half points. Hopefully that part of the learning curve will not be repeated.

12) Tuning out all the media for the entire week. Didn’t even realize Ray Ed was gone until I saw someone post a half nekkid photo of him on FB. The media mostly picked the Falcons to win this week (even though most of the Cage picked this as a loss earlier this year). The media has once again been made to look foolish by the Falcons not doing what they should have done. We can expect nothing but disinterest and disgust from them for the rest of the year, until we win that first playoff game. So be it. The road to the Super Bowl still runs through the GA Dome.

That qualifies as short for me. I’m out.

Big Ray

November 13th, 2012
1:28 am

We’re 8-1 and just cut a guy who was doing practically nothing for us.

Yep, things are coming apart at the seams and doom is on the way.

Pardon me, I’ll step to the left and wait for the nuclear explosion. See ya after the fallout.

Big Lou

November 13th, 2012
2:21 am

Big Ray

Lol! The sky is falling! There is mutiny in the locker room. As the world turns…

I just think it was a message, to be honest. What better way to get others to preform than to fire one of your underachieving peers? I bet you there won’t be missed tackles against the Cardinals. I bet there will be a little more push on that Oline. I bet a certain RB will hit that hole faster than when he was speeding that night of the arrest.

Zero tolerance is being shown. Bout time this organization grew some cajones.

Matty Bicep

November 13th, 2012
6:04 am

My theory, Nolan had it with the guy, and probably wanted to cut him 4 games ago, but they did not want to take the cap hit. If there was contention, it was because the underling coaches wanted him gone, the players leaving their guts on the field were feeling dissed because they are killing themselves, and you got a prima donna half @zzing it. Fact his, he only played 14 plays last week, 4 on ST. I would love to see the tape of that, I bet Nolan went to Smitty and said, I don’t want this guy on my team.

Second, Mr Edwards is a Magic City guy. Anyone see the picture of him and his GF and his Underwear model calender? Puhleese.. Who else got a DUI going home from Magic City? I wonder who was with him that night. Hmmm. Any of this starting to make a little sense? Sure, a high priced free agent not putting in the effort, partying it up a Magic City? Maybe a little message to Mr Turner embedded in all this? You know, high priced free agents not giving it their all?

Next, we have some talented D ends on the roster that might get a little playing time, who might be motivated, and who might get a few snaps. Sidbury? Massaqui? Mathews? Hell, we got too many DEs. I disagreed with D3 about the “give the new guy a shot, what can it hurt” about our LT position, but Baker is leaving it on the field giving the effort, if I have a high priced FA who is suppose to be a leader dogging it, what could it hurt.

Got to hand it to he Mud Duck, what leadership, and Smitty and TD for reading the signals, and took action.

All you guys trying to read this as a rift between TD and our coaching staff are silly. If there was one, it is because Nolan wanted him gone, but TD did not want to take the cap hit.

Finally, remember how MT7 ran after the DUI? He came out and ran like the old M7, I say the odds are about 50/50 MT7 makes is on the roster by playoff time, he is down to his last chance.

honest_abe

November 13th, 2012
6:50 am

hey i was right about one thing. edwards sucks. 1 out of 100 ain’t that bad. :)

Wings

November 13th, 2012
7:28 am

honest abe, wow, you were right. And hello!

Wings

November 13th, 2012
7:30 am

It’s great that Edwards is gone, but M Turner needs a direct message too. On the bench.

From one of the other blogs, this was a funny post:

As for Turner, when his # got called on that last 3rd down, I couldn’t believe it. The Saints must have tampered with Matty’s earpiece.

Wings

November 13th, 2012
7:40 am

Smith is getting some complaints from ESPN re too conservative and timid:
http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/8622858/the-falcons-seal-their-own-fate-rest-week-10-news

John Waynesworld

November 13th, 2012
7:46 am

Hey, every NFL team has their Stanford Routt or Jake Delhomme in Free Agent fails, and every year every NFL team can hear the sucking sound which is millions of dollars of cap money going down the drain. In Ray Edwards case, the comparison would be closer to Dana Stubblefield going from the 49ers to the Redskins, leaving one team riding a wave of acknowledgment and immediately crashing into invisibility. For us, Edwards will be a salary cap reminder for a couple of years.

The good news is that we have some serious overachievers at the DE position, so we won’t be lacking in effort. If I were TD and Smitty I may even bring up Micanor Regis from the PS and try more 3 DT looks. The D line obviously need more beef with balls, and the release of Edwards is evidence of that.

Wings

November 13th, 2012
7:51 am

I watched the first half again. The thing that is obvious about the run game can be seen on the first play of the game.

As many said last year and the year before, the other defensive teams know when Micheal Turner will run the ball.

On the first play, NO sent what looked like three LB’s at the snap of the ball toward the middle of the back field. There was no other direction for Turner to run. There is no way for the OL to block all of these defenders. The left and right were “walled off” and he goes down for -3. The play design and predictability is terrible. It continued this was throughout the game.

harleyman

November 13th, 2012
8:26 am

D3-Thanks for the well thought out article. Really appreciate the coherent grammar and feedback unlike some of the other Falcon reporters. Keep up the good work.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 13th, 2012
8:36 am

@MB-6:04am comment:

“Maybe a little message to Mr. Turner embedded in all of this” Turning the phrase “emBEDded” and Magic City (M. Turner) in the same sentence is priceless.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 13th, 2012
8:57 am

@Wings 7:51am comment:

“As many said last year and the year before, the other defensive teams know wheen Michael Turner will run the ball”

I don’t necessarilly disagree with that…but, more importantly, IMO, the defensive teams know WHERE, rather than when, he will run the ball. They know he will try ploy it up the middle, don’t have the speed or agility to bounce it to the outside.

Unca' Bob

November 13th, 2012
9:14 am

From what I have read R Edwards had become a distraction and was apathetic with his attitude.

There are no decisions that come from the Branch that are made in a vacuum. That’s why it’s call an organization.

elephanthead

November 13th, 2012
9:15 am

I thought I was the only one who missed Eric Weems. I can’t figure out what Franks problem is, but he looks terrified to run upfield. I’m afraid he may cost us a close game with something stupid like a fair catch on his own 3 yd line like he has already done.

The defense look more VanGorder-ish every week. What happened to the defense we saw in the first 3 games? Attacking, weird confusing looks, etc?

The OL obviously needs to be addressed. I know I’m not the only one who sees McClure getting tossed like a salad. The penetration that kills Turner is coming between the guards, and that can’t continue. This is what you get when you dont use you high picks on quality linemen.

As far as the use of personnel, look at what the Patriots do. They will have a play or 2 that is designed to fit whatever backs or receivers they have in the game. You think Danny Woodhead or Julian Edelman would ever see a snap on this team? No way. Antoine Smith, Snelling, Quizzy – they all have SOMETHING they could bring to the table if the coaches would find a way to use what they have. But no,… Not going to go off on MT today since everyone on this blog knows the deal o him.

They are still on the good track, but the coaches need to take a hard look at who is not performing (I’m looking at you O-Line) and replace as necessary – without regard to seniority of feelings getting hurt. Block or sit.

Coop

November 13th, 2012
10:06 am

MB – for someone who bags on every opinion you don’t like with the notion that, “you don’t know what’s going on at Flowery Branch” oyu sure o portend to know a hell of a lot. But then, nothing is ever wrong. Every decision is always best. Heck, even when we lose it’s for the best of the team. Your idea of logic is anything that supports your point regardless of how ridiculous or how often you contradict yourself.

BR – you and BL can laugh all you want, but fractured locker rooms are not unheard of. My suppostion of conjecture could certainly be wrong, but there is a ton about this move that smells bad. Call it a hunch. I’m sure in your line of work, you’ve had a hunch before. Sometimes they’re right, sometimes not. But hey, no one at FB EVER gave misinformation or used the media to get THEIR story out. So, you guys are right, I’m the one out in left field.

D3 – Good read. I did watch several members of the Cage vacilate between this game pointing out serious problems and, nah it’s all ok. Heck, we’re 8-1! Life is good. Go back and look at what has been said since LAST year. We can’t runthe ball and we can’t get to the QB and Smitty gets too conservative too often. Things are better this year, but the NOLA game showed that we still have flaws that good, playoff eams can expose.

I know, the regular season means nothing. I kow, we’re 8-1. But it sure as hell seems that a few of us have said that team is gpoing to exploit our flaws and it would cost us. Well, it just happened.

Finally, some members like SP and myself (and others) have taken heat from JJ, BR, SW and others about engaging with other members, specifically BL and MB. I sat back and watched for a few days and thought about those comments from the OBCM. I don’t think that my opinion or SP’s opinion, or any other’s is less (or more) important than yours. Some on here have been accused of HATING the team, not being fans, and wishing the Falcons would fail. To me, that’s a fairly blatant personal attack and I feel that our retorts to this idiocy is warranted. But if the OBCM don’t like it, then scroll on past or ask D3 to block us. But I’m not listening to censorship when I’m defending myself from being called non-fan.

Coop

November 13th, 2012
10:12 am

D3 – Blogmonster

Paddy O

November 13th, 2012
10:14 am

regarding the FO make spur of the moment changes: occasionally, a guy will do something egregious and get the heave ho – I remember a kick returner named Jennings when Smitty first got here – muffed a punt and got the cut; and then there was Polite just a couple weeks ago. I’m sorry Edwards got cut – I liked the guy in Minnesota – but, the Allen affect apparently did pump up his numbers. Honestly, after watching Beirman play the last couple years – he is really a high quality player. I’d like to see the Octopus come on the field – he was pretty stout on the run. I’m also glad McClure finally blurted out essentially that the RB stinks and can’t hit holes while they are there. MIKE TURNER FOR FULLBACK!

Paddy O

November 13th, 2012
10:18 am

SW: Unfortunately, you were not posting here when the Falcons switched up and went with 3 DE defensive front. I think we are moving faster than expected toward the 3-4 – so, we will see if our thoughts on the current personnel being able to play that are correct. but, we are very light at LB.

D3

November 13th, 2012
10:29 am

Ray Ed Cut — I’ll be back for plenty more a little later, but for right now, here’s the way I read the contract……..

5 years / $27,500,00

Let’s see how this pastes from excel:

YEAR —BASE SALARY x S. BONUS — MISC. x CAP HIT
2011 x 2,000,000 x 800,000 x x x ______2,800,000
2012 x 3,000,000 x 800,000 x 750,000 x 4,550,000
2013 x 5,500,000 x 800,000 x 750,000 x 7,050,000
2014 x 5,000,000 x 800,000 x 750,000 x 6,550,000
2015 x 5,000,000 x 800,000 x 750,000 x 6,550,00

$11 million guaranteed
Signing Bonus: $4 million
2012 Option Bonus: $3 million
2015 Escalator: $2.5 million based on sacks

Paddy O

November 13th, 2012
10:33 am

dhunt – i agree, regarding the way the Falcons played the entire game, it was NOT a bad game. The Falcons did fairly well – but, losing to the Saints – especially considering our records, was BAD. Also, I think the Cage owes Weems an apology – we (most here) took him for granted – and did a very good job – both on returns and as our burner down the field on our kicks.

D3

November 13th, 2012
10:47 am

So here’s the way I read it, it appears that we’re going to have to eat $4.65 million next year. Woweeeeee, that’s a ton of dead money. I said it earlier this year that I thought we would be stuck with Ray Ed for another year purely for the money. This has to be a locker room issue. If you remember it was a little but a risk bringing him because of all the

Zoomie

November 13th, 2012
10:47 am

I’m a little tired of seeing the O-linemen show their behinds when questioned by the media, with smart-aleck retorts like “you guys” being thrown at the writers. This week, it’s McClure; previously. it’s been Clabo showing his rear.

These guys are not above criticism. This isn’t a chicken (RB) or the egg (O-line) type question, this is a matter of the existence of the species itself (a Falcons running game) being a myth. There’s no denying Turner’s ineffectiveness, and there’s no ignoring the Atlanta O-line playing the running game 2-3 yards deep in their own back field — fairly consistently!

Turner has no quickness, no lateral mobility, and any speed he has takes five yards to ramp up. On top of that, he’s been a disaster in the screen game DK has tried to bring on board. I can’t believe we’re going to have to sit and watch this travesty play over and over for the rest of the season. It’s time — past time — for a change. A big change. A meaningful change.

While not the only one being beat, Clabo is the one who stands out the most in being beat consistently on both run and pass downs. Again, I believe a statement to the O-line should be forthcoming, and Clabo should be that statement. At least Baker is playing better on pass downs this year; however, in reviewing the DVR’d games, I’ve noticed both the left and right sides of the line being blown off the ball on run downs. As a unit, they aren’t getting the job done, and for the second year in a row.

If McClure, as the grizzled, veteran leader of this group, is seeing something different, and it’s a matter of coaching, play-calling, scheme, technique, or whatever, I’m sure we’d all like to hear it. Right now, what we see with our own eyes is lack of production by both the primary RB and the O-line in general. They’re ALL failing to get it done.

Some of the other things being discussed (defense, offensive execution, coaching decisions, etc.) are tweakable. The lack of a run game, with its ineffective RB and anemic line play is beyond tweaking, it needs to be fixed, rebuilt from scratch, made-over, SOMETHING! Time for DK to earn his paycheck.

This team has no chance at a championship run with the current condition of its run game. One dimensional ain’t good, whether that single dimension is run or pass . . .

LRD

November 13th, 2012
10:52 am

Too bad we couldnt have traded Edwards for a running back ….. just sayin..
but goes to show, no one is safe on the team… Smitty just put the team on notice.. Turner needs to take this to heart…

Geo

November 13th, 2012
10:56 am

Wings — “As many said last year and the year before, the other defensive teams know when Micheal Turner will run the ball.

On the first play, NO sent what looked like three LB’s at the snap of the ball toward the middle of the back field. There was no other direction for Turner to run. There is no way for the OL to block all of these defenders. The left and right were “walled off” and he goes down for -3. The play design and predictability is terrible. It continued this was throughout the game.”

Thank you for pointing that out. We tend to criticize players on bad plays, when the real fault is bad playcalling. Did you notice when NO had the ball on their last possession and lined up for obvious runs up the gut, what happened? Running back stuffed, nowhere to go.

I thought we had put the Turner up the middle offense to bed this year. Now it rears its ugly head and the offense sputters and clanks in a too familiar manner. Looks like the stubborn hand of Mike Smith to me. His approach reeks of conservatism and fear everytime he gets in a big game. McClure was likely as pissed about that as he was about TipToe33. I don’t see how we can win the big games with the way Smith coaches. I hope he proves me wrong.

Hamad Meander

November 13th, 2012
10:56 am

D3 – couldn’t agree with you more on the offensive line changes and that Turner is done. When you weigh 260+ lbs as a running back and seem to go down with the slightest of touch, you aren’t an asset to this offense anymore. I like what you said about Chris Ivory – how is it the Saints can pick up RBs from the dump heap (Ivory, Thomas) and make them look so good?

As far as the offense goes, do we have a better set with (3) WR, (1) TE, and Jacquizz Rodgers? This seems to be our most successful set, and I’d like to see more of it. If we are going to win the short yardage game, go with even bigger guys up front. How about Hawley as a fullback in that set?

I am glad to see they made a move with Ray Edwards. Why continue with what isn’t working? Let the young guys on the roster tep up and make a name for themselves.

I still believe in the Falcons and after the week we had, weren’t surprised to lose to the Saints, but now we have to get back on the winning track and not let one loss derail the mission of playoffs with homefield.

Geo

November 13th, 2012
11:04 am

Just wondering, did we run any screens last Sunday?

We line up Julio in the backfield for the Turner fake-pitch to Julio play, but gave it to Turner for no gain. Would have liked to see it again, with Julio getting the ball. Playcalling sucked.

D3

November 13th, 2012
11:05 am

………computer cut off.

He was a touch of risk because of his personality and the falling out he had in Minnesota. Maybe it was just that Nolan was sick of him and wanted to clear the way for the younger guys in Cliff Matt, El Sid, and Mass. If that’s the case, I applaud it. You also have to give credit where it’s due on TD. He may make a mistake, but he either makes another move to correct it or doesn’t make that same mistake again.

So with that said, here’s my take on the Ray Ed move……….

1) — First of all, I’ll have to stand up and eat some mighty fine crow. I’ll take that crow with some whine and hot pepper sauce. I never thought that Edwards would be an elite DE, but I did think he could come and at least get close to his 8 sacks he had in Minnesota and be a good #2 DE to Abe. I was pretty dead wrong. It turns out that Edwards was completely the beneficiary of the Williams Brothers and Jared Allen in Minny. That crow tastes mighty fine.

2) — Maybe it was simply a case of Nolan getting sick of the dude and let him go to clear the way for some younger guys that we’ve all been wanting to see for awhile. When Babs starting playing DE in that 3 DT front and Ray Ed only got like 17% snaps against the Cowboys, I knew something was up. I meant to bring that up, but just forgot.

3) — Eating that $4.65 million is a tough pill to swallow. That’s what happens when you make bad signings. I thought it was an OK signing to be honest, so I can sit here and say that Dimitroff made a huge mistake. Sometimes free agent signings just don’t work out. Clearly, we didn’t have hardly any beef in the middle to help free him up and Ray Ed depended on that. Also remember that TD went hard after Charles Johnson as the first option and made Carolina way overpay.

4) — The cap situation just got even trickier. Cutting Babs now is completely out of the question. If anything, this may have cleared the way for him to even move to play more DE in 4-3 fronts, as he’s been doing in the 3 DT setup, or maybe even move to a 5 technique in 3-4 looks, while he doesn’t have the ideal height, he does have the ideal weight. So now, if you want to spend ANY money in free agency, cutting Turner is a must and letting Grimes go is also a must.

5) — Maybe this is finally El Sid, Cliff Matt, and Mass’s chance to make some plays. We’ve all been wanting to see Sidbury’s pass-rushing skills be used. Same goes for Cliff Matt and Mass. Perhaps, Nolan felt obligated to give Ray Ed every chance in the world to fit in his system and get better and finally had enough.

6) — Speaking of, Mike Nolan and Smitty are in this for the long haul. One reason Nolan likely took the job is that he knew how good Smitty’s job security was (something he’s definitely lacked the last few years in Denver and Miami) could finally have several years of drafting “his players” and developing them in his system. We can talk about disconnect all we want, but Nolan deserves a chance to draft his own guys and use them accordingly. Lord knows BVG had 4 years of drafting his guys and developing them (or lack thereof). Nolan’s already done pretty darn good with guys already on the roster.

7) — There’s really on two names worth a darn coming up in free agency and one is 31 (Osi) and the other probably won’t make it to FA (Michael Johnson). Even if we wanted to sign a FA DE, we won’t even have the money. I think it’s time we sucked it up and developed guys who we believe to have talent. I want to see Biermann, Sidbury, Matthews, and Mass on the field at the same time in some capacity (hello 3-4?).

8.) — Then of course there’s the locker room thing. Sure, the grumblings were probably getting pretty bad, and this where I may get smashed, but I think that’s been one of TD’s and Smitty’s best traits. A locker room is something that is a very important thing and is very delicate. If they saw something they didn’t like, they made a move to fix it. Can’t say I have a problem with that, but just be aware that it was a very costly mistake and will severely limit you in free agency, etc.

Wings

November 13th, 2012
11:07 am

Geo thanks. We ran the Smitty offense on Sunday.

D3

November 13th, 2012
11:08 am

Zoomie — Great point RE: the OL and Turner getting offended, especially McClure. I said all the way back from the set of the off-season that McClure’s time should be up. Hell, we didn’t re-sign him until like a complete month after free agency started. Core guys you’re counting on don’t stay on the market that long. I thought from the start that either Konz or Hawley should take over the reigns.

D3

November 13th, 2012
11:11 am

As far as the offense goes, do we have a better set with (3) WR, (1) TE, and Jacquizz Rodgers? This seems to be our most successful set, and I’d like to see more of itHamad

Absolutely! This is what our base offense should be…..period. We have to play to our strengths and our strengths are Matt Ryan and our receivers. Throw to set up the run. Loosen the defenders and quicker type guys can make people miss. When we try that with Turner, it’s a joke.

Arno

November 13th, 2012
11:17 am

Falcons outgained both Philly and Dallas on the ground– no? That is why the CS is talking fixables.

Matty Bicep

November 13th, 2012
12:11 pm

Edwards saw his playing time reduced, and you know he became a distraction, It was a clear message to MT7 that:

* Be ready to accept a reduced role, if you bitch, your gone.

* Since you showed us after your DUI that when you want to, you can run hard. IF you do get another carry, but better run like it is your last, because it might be.

* Although Ray Edwards have an underwear modeling career backup plan, somehow I don’t think you will get that opportunity.

DrunkWino

November 13th, 2012
12:48 pm

Just a thought about this from a Saints fan,

Is there some sort of performance anxiety going on? You keep hearing the 11 out of 13 and the 2-7 records, the constant trash talk from the players that seems to just keep rising every game, the use of the word “hated,” so much above. It happens. You hear it about players (he’s not clutch,) and teams (can’t win when it counts,) all the time in every sport. It might be a mental block and not a sign that you team isn’t ‘for real.’

It just really seems like the Saints are in the Falcons heads, players and fans. I get the arguments about getting no respect, since well, you’ve got a point. Really, when you are the least penalized team in football, you are one of the best coached teams in football. Mental mistakes seem rare this season for your team and, go and look this up if you want, it’s not offense or defense than wins, it’s the most disciplined team that has the best chance to win. When you don’t see things like mistakes in coverage, dumb penalties, no turnovers, solid tackling, and consistent assignments executed; you tend to see teams that are playoff regulars with a decent shot at a SB win.

I wouldn’t get too worked up if I were you. Hell, if it is some sort of mental block, maybe it’s imperative for everyone to let it go. Even Lofton looked like he’d been practicing his postgame comments all offseason.

DrunkWino

November 13th, 2012
1:01 pm

Enter your comments here

D3

November 13th, 2012
1:02 pm

Coop — Posts are out. I feel ya. I try to be objective as I can in my opinion of the Falcons and our Dawgs. I can tell you that if we play like we did against the Saints in the playoffs, we will be 0-4.

Wings

November 13th, 2012
1:19 pm

D3 what really gets me are the people who don’t recognize Sunday’s performance was so much like previous ones especially the GB game 2010.

Big Lou

November 13th, 2012
1:29 pm

Coop

Can’t speak for Big Ray, but I was jesting overall. I have no idea what’s going on either. Yet, the Falcons wouldn’t be 8-1 if there were issues in the locker room. Ray Edwards wasn’t being used anyways.

As far as your post defending what you bring to the table, I really don’t understand why MB and I are always put in the same category. I only lash at SP for his musings and insults on our coaching staff. Not to mention, it’s in the past right? Why are you bringing it up? I’ve moved on, bro.

It also seems you skim across convos like I have with SW, Big Ray, and others and neglect the fact that I have conceded many times to be wrong or agree with them. Heck, I was agreeing with Paddy O yesterday about the Falcon’s lack of run game. I wonder why I have no issues with them. I guess they just ignore how ‘azzholish’ I am. Lol

Big Lou

November 13th, 2012
1:35 pm

Wings

You mean the game where the Falcons got blown out in the playoffs? I could of swore we were a yard away from winning Sunday. I can’t believe you don’t see a different fight in this team. I think most posters on here agree that there are issues, but we aren’t just tossing up this Falcon’s team like the ones in the past.

Past Falcons:

Good run game, inconsistent pass game. Good run defense, horrid pass defense.

New Falcons:

Bad run game, stellar passing game. Bad run defense, above average pass defense.

Running the ball and defending the run is easier to adjust. Just ask Gren Bay how it worked out for them in 2010, when they won the Superbowl.

DePlane

November 13th, 2012
1:51 pm

DePlane

November 13th, 2012
1:54 pm

Ya’ll get off each other up in here! Geez…call a truce and leave it alone. I don’t see anything so egregious by anyone it can’t be forgotten and everybody just move on.

D3

November 13th, 2012
2:06 pm

A good article RE: the Ray Ed cut from Knox Bardeen………

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1407129-atlanta-falcons-moving-forward-without-de-ray-edwards-will-be-easy

I 100% agree and I could give a d@mn less about Ray Edwards. The only thing I care about is the money we look to be eating. D-E-A-D M-O-N-E-Y!

Falcon 34

November 13th, 2012
2:09 pm

Good ol’ Pat Y with his usual bias garbage…………

After a four-week run in the top spot, the Atlanta Falcons have fallen to No. 2 in the latest ESPN.com Power Rankings.

The Houston Texans have moved into the No. 1 spot after Atlanta’s 31-27 loss to New Orleans on Sunday. The voters were unanimous in putting the Falcons at No. 2, but I’m not so sure that’s the right move.

Yeah, at 8-1, the Falcons and Texans are tied for the best record in the NFL. But, at least for the moment, I’m not so sure the Falcons are actually better than teams like the Bears, 49ers, Ravens, Packers, Broncos and Patriots. Can the Falcons be the best team in the NFC or in the entire NFL when all is said and done? Yeah, it’s possible, but they have some work to do. Right now, they’re very good, but not great, which is pretty much what they’ve been all season.

Someone said it earlier. Pat Yastinkas

Arno

November 13th, 2012
2:21 pm

@ DrunkWino 12:48

Our heads are just fine. But thanks for your concern.

Provocation and counter-provocation thrives in the sports world, players and fans. As much as we applaud classy attitudes, the jibes are just too entertaining and we like to push them as far as we can. But calling out D3 on repeatedly using the term “hated Saints” is not quite legitimate. He is stating for us what is a simple fact. Still– It would be regretable if the term hurts the potential of enjoying a convo with a decent Saints fan. I’m supposed to say here– “but there aren’t any decent Saints fans.”

Big Lou

November 13th, 2012
2:25 pm

Trust me, DePlane. I’m with you.

WU (Whynot Us)

November 13th, 2012
2:26 pm

Just dropping in to start catching up on whassup in the cage today. Can’t stay on, but @DHunt (1:03 post) was excellent!

Big Lou

November 13th, 2012
2:29 pm

Pat Y is a tool and can’t wait for the Falcons to prove him wrong…

or watch AB make heads roll!

Coop

November 13th, 2012
2:38 pm

BL – I have no specific beef with you. I don’t recall you and I having any issues. I was speaking to a larger issue I see of folks referring to SP, myself, Paddy O and others as “non-fans” or “haters” when we critique the eam or organization. So I lumped you into that group because of your runs wit SP.

To be clear, I don’t agree with most of your opinions, but I respect your takes. I think you may overlook ome issues I consider more important. I hink you do that because the 8-1 record. Just my assumption. I believe that winning can hide what needs fixing and lead to first round bounces. So I get that we disagree and that’s cool. My issue is with comments I’ve seen (not specifically from you to me) like, “y’all won’t be satisfied no matter what”, “you’re not a real fan”, “you must hate the team”, “people think they’re smarter than the coaches”, etc.

You don’t agree with my critiue and opinon, fine. But I don’t challenge anyone’s fandom. I’ll challenge their logic, but I’m not attacking their love of the tem.

WU (Whynot Us)

November 13th, 2012
2:41 pm

@PaddyO (10:33 am post) – Well said! D3 thanks for working on the salary cap info! Be back to read more tonight…

D3

November 13th, 2012
2:42 pm

Arno — I know, hysterical, right? I use the term “hated” because I hate them more than any other team in sports. With their classless, tasteless, showboating, whiny @ss, crybaby selves the minutes something doesn’t go their way. I use the term hate because I in fact do…….hate them. Worse than the Yankees, Phillies, Eagles, Cowboys, FC Barcelona, etc, etc.

Coop

November 13th, 2012
2:45 pm

DePlane – Great read from Grantland. I admit, at the time, I thought Smitty was doing the right thing NOT going for two. But the article makes an intriguing point. Regardless of the decision or outcome, his point that Smitty manages the game accoring to a “book” seems dead on. That’ll get you a winning record and into the playoffs more than not, but will it ever win a Super Bowl? Would Smitty ever onside kick to start the 2nd half?

For the whole Cage, oes anyone remember the last faked punt? Faked FG? I don’t. Have we atempted any in the last 4.5 years? I want to say there was one fake punt, but I can’t recall. I know we’ve tried at least one flea flicker (this year I think). Here’s the bigger question… does that mater? In all seriousness, do y’all think Smitty simply won’t allow those plays or has neverfelt the need, or what?

Finally, someone above said Smitty never calls O or D plays. He doesn’t carry a call sheet. That’s true, he doesn’t carry a sheet. However, they’ve shown him on NFL Films giving directions to MM and BVG. He was ‘miked” up and he was telling MM, “run it again”… “pound the ball and run the clock”… “short passing here”. Perhaps that was just a few games, but I do get the sense that Smitty influences the style of play if not the specific play call.

Coop

November 13th, 2012
2:47 pm

D3 – I only hate the Cowboys more… but that’s a geographical problem.

JB Falcon

November 13th, 2012
3:06 pm

D3, losing $4+ mil on RE isn’t so bad when you think that we could have signed Mario!

Zoomie

November 13th, 2012
3:10 pm

@DrunkWino (who I’m not surprised, given his noniker, to proudly proclaim himself a Taints fan):

Taints.
Swamp rats.
Hate.
Definitely.

D3

November 13th, 2012
3:13 pm

Coop — Totally agree. I could be taking an enormous leap here, but I believe that most times you see those TWP’s (Turner Wasted Plays), that’s all Smitty. And even though we can’t see or hear it, you can just imagine Smitty’s hyper-conservatism smothering everything in those coaches meetings. I’m sure I’ll get criticized by some, but I’d venture to say that anytime you see something conservative, good chances are Smitty had something to do with it. It’s not like it’s his first year, we know what Smitty looks like when we see it.

RE: the grantland article, yeah it’s a good point and Bradley wrote something similar a few days ago, and it does depict a coach stubborn to change, but I say the same thing I said in the playoffs vs. the Giants: if you can’t get one yard on 4 plays from the 1 yard line to win the game……you don’t deserve to. The play of the game wasn’t the failed 4th and 1 in my opinion, but the 1st down call that see Turner get the ball 4-5 yards behind the line of scrimmage and lose 2-3 yards on the first play.

JB Falcon

November 13th, 2012
3:26 pm

The grantland article makes a good case against MS. While we were desperately tring to get that 4th and 1, we could have just kicked a FG and had a whole new situation. MS left us no choice and NO knew it. If nothing else we could have played for the tie and maybe went into OT.
I know Smitty has his seven minute excuse but those sheets are “averages.” Doesn’t matter now anyway but, I’m like Coop, we need to start playing like we want to win just a tad more than we’re doing now. imo.

Matty Bicep

November 13th, 2012
3:30 pm

MB – for someone who bags on every opinion you don’t like with the notion that, “you don’t know what’s going on at Flowery Branch” oyu sure o portend to know a hell of a lot. But then, nothing is ever wrong. Every decision is always best. Heck, even when we lose it’s for the best of the team. Your idea of logic is anything that supports your point regardless of how ridiculous or how often you contradict yourself.

It is quite simple, as the Saints fan pointed out, we are 8-1 and talking like we are about to throw in the towel. Man, it is competition and I just go into it thinking I am going to win, not worrying about losing. The outcome is not a foregone conclusion, and I know I won’t go in with 100% of anything.

But really, I will say this, the only REAL difference I see between this team and past Falcons teams is Matty Ice. Before, I saw a pretty good QB who was not ready to take a team on his shoulders, but I think we do now. It is not because he “choked”, or his weapons, he just was not ready.

But I think he is now. I my heart, that is what I believe. Look at the QBs we lost to in the Playoffs, all might be in the HOF. Playoff football is about the QB putting that team on his shoulders and winning, not about the freaking coaches. It is about the man. I don’t “blame”any won for what happened, but I know what has to happen for us to win, and Ryan has to take us there.

As for my conjecture on why Edwards was cut, you are right, it is conjecture, but if I were Turner, I would not be too comfortable.

D3

November 13th, 2012
3:33 pm

JB — That’s a good point. I didn’t really think of it like that. However, knowing Smitty, we wouldn’t have even tried for the touchdown at that point. I knew there’s a reason I started getting heartburn when HD didn’t score.

Matty Bicep

November 13th, 2012
4:00 pm

It is sorta funny though, I hear a lot of folks saying that Smitty can’t make changes, or admit mistakes, so he cuts Edwards, admits a mistake, makes a change, and then it turns into it being proof of some sort of disconnect and sign of another negative.

As Rocky Balboa said in Rocky VII. “If I can change, and you can change, Smitty can CHANGE”.

BobbyDawg

November 13th, 2012
4:17 pm

I think old Ray went out on the town in NO Saturday night and took about half the team with him and they all felt bad and played like crap on Sunday and he got his @$$ fired for it. That’s what I think ! GO FALCONS

Coop

November 13th, 2012
5:02 pm

obby – That’s the best explanation I’ve heard et. Run that by MB though, he’s the only one who know’s what Smitty is thinking.

Wings

November 13th, 2012
5:55 pm

Coop one of two who know everything.

Matty Bicep

November 13th, 2012
6:00 pm

Smitty and I are tight.

Sportaree

November 13th, 2012
6:29 pm

I’m still trying to figure out what McClure really wanted to say about the running game.

D3

November 13th, 2012
6:37 pm

Sportaree — Good to see you man. There really seems to be only two options I think. He either was calling out Turner for being slow as molasses and not hitting the hole, especially since Quizz does way more with the same offensive line. Or he was talking about run play-calling either by Koetter, Smitty, or both. I mean really, did changing one lineman (2nd round draft pick Konz, who was the best CENTER in the draft) and getting a new OL coach expect to get a much different result? Not to mention Turner being one year older and slower.

Unca' Bob

November 13th, 2012
7:04 pm

Sportaree,

November 13th, 2012
6:29

I understand Mud Ducks lack of comment and at the same time what I don’t understand is why bring it up? Speak up or shut up. Do not bring something to the fore front that you refuse to address.

Geo

November 13th, 2012
7:05 pm

Falcons-New Orleans on NFL Replay tonight at 8 for those who can stand it.

D3

November 13th, 2012
7:11 pm

UB — Great point my friend. Hate those halfway “comments.”

Birdman

November 13th, 2012
7:15 pm

Eve Cage

Hope all are blessed and well.

I think letting Ray go was maybe not only his performance . But also a statement to some of the other players to tighten thinks up .And yea Turner could one of those players.

Does anyone think they possibly could be thinking of picking up someone on the wire ? Maybe even an RB if there is one. If Atlanta could open up that part of there game more. There offence would be unstoppable .

Just a question !!

Birdman

November 13th, 2012
7:15 pm

Arno

November 13th, 2012
7:19 pm

@ D3 2:43

Sorry– I meant to say you are stating for ALL of us the simple fact. The Saints really had to work hard to get to the top of your list. They managed to do it.

falcon21

November 13th, 2012
7:35 pm

No play Ray was a mistake from the beginning but I thought he was a great pick up at the time, I was wrong. AB gave no play big bucks to get sacks, it never really happened. I’m sure they tried to trade him but no one is going to pay him that kind of money for so little production. They had to cut their losses, no choice.

Wings

November 13th, 2012
7:39 pm

Big Ray we need your analysis of the latest “Turner had no where to go” article.

JB Falcon

November 13th, 2012
7:42 pm

BM, I’m wondering the same thing you are. There has to be some underlying reason for letting RE go midyear. I think maybe it is the money for future use or maybe he just wasn’t worth a sh!t or Nolan saw no use for him or maybe they are going to try to buy someone else, BUT, there is no FA’s available? How many maybes and ifs is that?
Whatever Mud Duck was trying to elicite into the public had an effect on the FO. OR did his comments have anything to do with it? I personally don’t think Adrain Peterson could be effective behind out line so that makes me wonder even more about MD’s comment. If it ain’t the OL. what is it?

Unca' Bob

November 13th, 2012
7:45 pm

falcon21

November 13th, 2012
7:35 pm

I feel we all had hopes with REd. Some one will have to absorb the cost. Just glad it’s not me.

JB Falcon

November 13th, 2012
7:46 pm

AP could “not”.

falcon21

November 13th, 2012
7:46 pm

Paddy O

November 13th, 2012
7:55 pm

Just read DOL’s interview with Welcome Back. That interview is PAINFULLY disturbing. He actually stated it might just be luck that Quizz had some nice runs while Mike Turner got stuffed so chronically. Does welcome back not understand that Turner being back there means really only one type of play is coming? If he does not, the Falcons are screwed.

Sportaree

November 13th, 2012
8:02 pm

falcon21, Turner is facing the same fate as Edwards, its just a matter of time.

DePlane

November 13th, 2012
8:07 pm

Sportaree, I have to agree with you on that one…

falcon21

November 13th, 2012
8:09 pm

Yep Sportaree, he gave us a few good years and I thank him for giving us his best. He is done now IMHO.

DePlane

November 13th, 2012
8:12 pm

Agree on RE D3…dead money.

Paddy O

November 13th, 2012
8:14 pm

geo- thanks for the heads up! see you fellas tomorrow. the ray edwards cut makes no sense at this point of the year – unless he went into the coaches office and said, play me or cut me.

Ken Strickland

November 13th, 2012
8:14 pm

This isn’t rocket science we’re dealing with here. Common sense should tell anyone that after 3yrs of running the same play and the same runner in the same short yardage situations, that DEFs know what to expect with Turner in the gm. Our total unwillingness to pass to him or run him outside in short yardage situations makes it a helluva lot easier for DEFs to figure out what’s coming.

What we’re doing in short yardage situations now is what we routinely did under Mularkey as part of our overall OFF.

DePlane

November 13th, 2012
8:14 pm

Yastinkas….haha!

DePlane

November 13th, 2012
8:15 pm

KS, spot on. If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you always got.

DePlane

November 13th, 2012
8:18 pm

It is said that Ray Edwards was apathetic in the locker room. That is cancerous to a winning attitude. Could be that reason alone he was let go. These coaches are not going to accept anything less then a good attitude and hard work every day. It is a strange mid-season move, but every player who is not giving 110% is now on notice they will not tolerate mediocrity.

That guy stole millions of dollars from the Falcons. To have a crappy attitude on top of that musta really P.O.’d somebody.

Birdman

November 13th, 2012
8:23 pm

Sportaree , JB,. 21, DePlane

Agreed .

Coop

November 13th, 2012
8:32 pm

So in FFL, why did I get a loss against Nookah if we tied?

SeminoleWarrior

November 13th, 2012
8:43 pm

What an interesting two days over in the Godfather’s blog. First, Mud Duck called out the invisible element while standing tall for the offensive line.

Today, DK states that MT33 had no chance. That there were too many runners in position.

Interesting…..let’s see what tomorrow brings in the Godfather’s blog.

falcon21

November 13th, 2012
8:51 pm

SW, I don’t know if you can pick up 92.9 in your area but if you can it is darn good sports radio. I heard a DOL interview today.

SeminoleWarrior

November 13th, 2012
8:56 pm

F21, I can not get it here in middle GA. What were the highlights?

falcon21

November 13th, 2012
9:05 pm

Believe it or not but DOL was dogging the Falcons on their play. The man actually spoke honestly about our Birds, just as one of us would do.

SeminoleWarrior

November 13th, 2012
9:10 pm

Wow…. Props to the Godfather for having the guts to be straight forward and direct.

WU (Whynot Us)

November 13th, 2012
9:37 pm

After catching up on the chatter in the cage, just wanted to mention I particularly liked the 3:30 post by Matty Bicep. Y’all have fun…

JB Falcon

November 13th, 2012
9:43 pm

Please ya’ll, go to DOL’s blog that was posted at 7:32 this evening. The most perfect example of our shortcomings coming from DK himself, ” It’s hard to do all of those well all of the time.”

http://blogs.ajc.com/atlanta-falcons-blog/2012/11/13/atlanta-falcons-koetter-on-struggling-run-game-mike-turner-had-no-chance/?cxntfid=blogs_atlanta_falcons_blog

It’s hard to do??? What the F do you think the Falcons are paying you for Mr. Offense?? We know that MT sucks and the OL sucks but don’t some on here and say it’s “hard”! That’s what I say when I’m in the mood!

Our team has some problems and they need to be corrected and we expect the FO to do it. It’s hard my azz, life is hard so if you want it get on it!

That, my friends, was the last beer talking.

WU (Whynot Us)

November 13th, 2012
9:44 pm

Didn’t notice any mention of it here, but DOL is reporting Falcons signed Toone and Coffman today. Toone takes RE’s spot and Coffman replaces the injured Gallardo. The also signed someone to the practice squad (maybe a TE, I don’t remember).

WU (Whynot Us)

November 13th, 2012
9:45 pm

G’night cage…

falcon21

November 13th, 2012
9:48 pm

Nice reporting WU, thanks man!

falcon21

November 13th, 2012
9:51 pm

JB Falcon

November 13th, 2012
9:53 pm

WU, we know who you are, “why not us” just sounds like “poor pitiful me”.

WU (Whynot Us)

November 13th, 2012
9:56 pm

JB Falcon – noted. I’ll think on it.

Matty Bicep

November 13th, 2012
10:30 pm

Please ya’ll, go to DOL’s blog that was posted at 7:32 this evening. The most perfect example of our shortcomings coming from DK himself, ” It’s hard to do all of those well all of the time.”

Well, his team is 8-1. What the hell do you want from the poor guy? He is working his @zz off, Ice had the best game ever as a pro, he was one misjudged bomb of being 9-0, and the poor guy is getting ripped. Man, you guys need antidepressants.

His statement tells me he is pushed to his breaking point, why the @@@@@ to we want to do that to the poor guy? He has done a hell of a job, especially with Ryan, and you are ready to buy him…I don’t question anyones fandom, but CMON MAN. Does this guy need support from the fans, or do we want him to have a heart attack?

Matty Bicep

November 13th, 2012
10:31 pm

Matty Bicep

November 13th, 2012
10:48 pm

Great players make great plays in big games. All a coach can do is put him in position to do it, but in the end, it is up to the player.

We have had some players make great plays, but our players have not made great plays in big games. Brooking flubbed coverage, Ice threw a pick 6 in a critical juncture of a game. Nobody did anything against the Giants, we just were not good enough.

Now, is Ralph Norwood a great kicker? Nope, he missed the biggest kick in his life, you can blame Marve Levy for coaching and putting the game on the back of his kicker, BUT HE PUT NORWOOD IN POSITION TO BE GREAT. Norwood failed, coaches can’t make players great, they can only put them in position. From there, it is about competing, Norwood was not good enough.

The Time is NOW ( formerly Whynot Us)

November 13th, 2012
10:50 pm

Enter your comments here

Matty Bicep

November 13th, 2012
11:09 pm

Saw this on another blog regarding MV7’s prospects of starting in the NFL again. Thought it was funny.

He’s no puppy and he will be 231 dog years next season. Not your lead retriever anymore, but he still won’t just roll over. Give him a bone as a backup and he might just escape from the doghouse and take a bite out of a defense. As Vick himself would say- still some fight left. Sorry about the dog jokes, but they’re just too doggone easy.

Matty Bicep

November 13th, 2012
11:26 pm

How about Eli Manning? Is he great, yep. Why, he has 2 rings. Coughlin put him in position. But you can’t give Coughlin credit for drawing up a scheme where the QB shakes off a few tackles and tosses up a bomb where a guy catches it on his helmet. No, that is a great player making a great play, you need those to win big games.

The Time is NOW ( formerly Whynot Us)

November 13th, 2012
11:26 pm

Hi cage! Couldn’t sleep so decided to pop in. I will lose the Whynot Us once y’all get used to the new moniker. Whynot Us probably comes from the angst of being a Falcons fan from the beginning. Let me explain.

I have been a Falcons fan since their first game in ATL. Went to the Pittsburgh game the first season. Tommy Nobis was my little league hero, and I was good enough to get his number. Unfortunately, little league was the peak of my athletic prowess. (I have deceptive speed… I’m a lot slower than I look.) I’ve seen everything the Falcons have put on the football field, and more of it has been bad than good, but I’ve been a fan through it all. There were always glimpses of hope. I was there when General Lee and the Gritz Blitz beat the Vikings in ATL on Monday Night Football. Was fired up with Bartkowski, Big Ben, William Andrews and a slew of others. I was ecstatic with the Super Bowl run of ‘98, thinking we finally had a REAL football coach. Then there was the excitement of the early Vick years. But through it all, my team never won consistently. Shoot, they didn’t even have back to back winning seasons for 4 decades! The media, of course, has never given the Falcons any respect which irks me greatly. But given our history, the truth is we haven’t earned it.
But they were still My Falcons, and I held out hope that someday I’d actually have a team I could be proud of and an organization competent enough to become a winning franchise that was always a factor that would have to be reckoned with.

Then came the ultimate low of the Petrino season. Here I am looking at a REALLY BAD team that’s going to have to rebuild from the bottom up. I was bummed, but being a Falcons fan I felt like I’d been through this before and would just have to do so again. I was enthusiastic about the draft the year AB hired TD and MS, but to be honest I was not particularly enthusiastic about either hire. I did my research (more than normal) and waited for draft day. When it arrived, I was ambivalent about Matty Ice and Baker but thought the rest of the draft was an unmitigated disaster. I was not pleased. I thought I might be at my breaking point with the incompetence of my chosen team.

But then something happened. This really bad team with a rookie quarterback and a backup running back from SD started winning games. Even went to the playoffs. Then they had 2 winning seasons in a row. Now 4. My team had become contenders. I became convinced that if I had been in charge it probably would have dumped the team into another Marion Campbell chasm. At that point I decided I didn’t want to play GM anymore. These guys have given me the team I’ve always wanted – a consistent winner. A team that is a contender. I am enjoying the dickens out of this!!!

Here we are at season five. The rookie quarterback has grown up, and has shown a potential for pulling out games late. Could this kid be another Joe Montana (bad example for skills, but a clutch guy calling the shots at the end of the game)? He gets in a tight spot and he throws it to a first round pick WR who is still in his prime, or to the hotshot young WR that we gave up a bunch of picks to get, or to the Hall of Fame tight end still playing at an elite level at the end of his career. This is our year guys! Does this team have flaws? Yes. But ALL of ‘em do. The NFL is designed that way on purpose so that everybody has a chance. The system is set up where (in theory) no one can win with dominant talent in all phases of the game. Every team has to make choices. Then it comes down to who gets hot (or stays hot) at the right time. The time is NOW!

This team may not be the first Lombardi trophy team from the ATL, but I like our chances. Lets do it now if we can, while continuing to build this organization into one that I can be proud of every year instead of every once in awhile. I will remain a fan regardless, but its much more fun when you’ve got a winning team. I can say that based on experience.

Thanks to JBFalcon for getting me thinking about this. Thanks for putting up with the rant.

The Time is NOW ( formerly Whynot Us)

November 13th, 2012
11:27 pm

Blogmonster.

The Time is NOW ( formerly Whynot Us)

November 13th, 2012
11:28 pm

Matty Bicep – think you’ll like the post that just got ate. Check it out later after it gets recovered. Too much work to try to redo it now.

The Time is NOW ( formerly Whynot Us)

November 13th, 2012
11:32 pm

Matty Bicep (11:26 post) – well said.

Big Ray

November 13th, 2012
11:39 pm

WHAT MAKES THOSE SITUATIONS SO CHALLENGING?:“They are challenging because you need one yard and everybody knows you need one yard. That’s what makes it challenging. It’s like you’re trying to make one yard and they’re trying to defend one yard. Maybe we ought to just pretend its third and 10 and we might be better off.”

I do recall saying that it might be a mental thing….

The Time is NOW ( formerly Whynot Us)

November 13th, 2012
11:42 pm

Good point Big Ray. Boy I hate the blogmonster…

The Time is NOW ( formerly Whynot Us)

November 13th, 2012
11:52 pm

It’s fun to be a fan of a team that finally consistently matters. To steal a line – these are the good old days. The last five years have been a blast compared to the first 40 years of the franchise. Does my team have flaws? Yes they do. But its fun rooting for a team that you honestly believe has a chance every time they take the field.

Big Ray

November 14th, 2012
12:00 am

http://blogs.ajc.com/atlanta-falcons-blog/2012/11/13/atlanta-falcons-koetter-on-struggling-run-game-mike-turner-had-no-chance/?cxntfid=blogs_atlanta_falcons_blog

Well, you can take this as Koetter “not knowing what the hell he is talking about”, or you can take this as DOL’s typical sordid and pathetic try at sensationalism, or you can just take it as “coach speak.”

Let’s break it down coldly and methodically, though.

1) Fact – there were several plays where Turner really did have no chance. Defenders were right on him, he wasn’t going anywhere. But was it just because there were a bunch of defenders right there, ready and waiting for him? Yes and no.

2) I think Koetter knows damn well that for Turner to be successful, you have to block the scheme and play right …or he’s toast. This is NOT an indictment of the OL, or even Koetter himself. He just admitted that they blocked the defensive look wrong. In fact, not once does Koetter call out the OL. He says on one play that “we didn’t execute”, which means as an offensive unit, the job wasn’t done. But he doesn’t say who didn’t do what.

Then there is this “There’s always multiple parts. Sometimes we have checks on. WE are checking for different looks. The very first one the other day, we just didn’t block it right. We blocked the look wrong. We either didn’t prepare them good enough or they didn’t recognize it good enough. Translation = he was fooled on that play. And more than just that one, I’d say. Or, Ryan failed to check down properly. One way or another, somebody didn’t have the OL blocking assignments in place. Whether that goes more on the OL or more on the CS is anybody’s guess, but if nothing else Koetter acknowledges that part of it is a coaching issue.

3) Koetter acknowledges that Quizz did a heck of a job on that 18 yard run. I’ll say it again, another way – Koetter gives Quizz credit for that run. He doesn’t say anything about the blocking being right, correct, or good on that play. He doesn’t say ANYTHING about the blocking on that play. What he DOES say is they needed another run like that.

To me, that speaks volumes, even if it’s coach-speak…which is very much mostly what he does in this interview.

We can’t expect the CS to share with us what they are thinking behind closed doors. Especially not THIS CS. Smitty is pretty secretive, he’s going to expect that from his entire staff.

Case in point: ” We’ll see how it plays out. Touches on this team are always going to be an issue because we have so many good skill guys. One guys increase in touches is going to come at the expense of another guy. Who is that? That’s the million dollar question.”

Coach speak. Not going to reveal anything. Can’t do ish about that. Bottom line – I think blocking assignments or no, they need to roll with Quizz because of the simple versatility as a pass-catcher that he brings.

You can fool the defense more when they don’t know if that guy is going to run the ball, catch the ball, chip block and then catch it….they won’t know. And unlike Jerious Norwood, Quizz is difficult to hurt or to cause a fumble. He’s short, stout, tough…and shifty.

So put him in the game early, often, and enough to keep scoring, keep fooling the defense. Defenses fear the Mike Turner punishing run, but most good DCs with enough tools already know how to stop it.

How else can you explain the Saints stopping us cold on the ground? They knew when Turner was in the game that there were only two things he could do – run the ball and be slow going to the hole doing it (and not change direction), or block a rusher. That’s it. Simple gameplan, if you ask me. No versatility, no fooling anybody.

The Saints knew when Turner would run, and they didn’t have to worry about any extravagant blocking schemes. All they had to do was fill the box.

The Time is NOW (formerly Whynot Us)

November 14th, 2012
12:04 am

Big Ray, you ROCK. Excellent post.

The Time is NOW (formerly Whynot Us)

November 14th, 2012
12:07 am

Well, couldn’t sleep so I came to the cage and wrote my signature post. Tired of waiting for it to be resurrected from the blogmonster, so I’ll try to go get some z’s. Later cage…

Big Ray

November 14th, 2012
12:16 am

Now here is where coach speak, flimsy excuses, and “Disconnect Theory” all collide.

How anybody can see this OL as capable of opening holes the way they did in years past is beyond me. So I don’t buy that part, no matter what any coach says. They can’t look at tape this year and tell me that they think our OL is every bit as capable as before in the run game. Especially “post Dahl.”

How anybody can look at Michael Turner and say he is the same RB he was 2-3 years ago is beyond me. He’s not. Simply isn’t. Can’t turn, can’t get to the edge, can’t adjust.

Now you take Dirk Koetter, who, although life was tough in Jacksonville…scraped together a living off of a particular type of RB. One that could gash a defense on runs, but could also do that on passes.

NOW ….

Picture this scene –

A bride at the alter with a veil. She’s not very attractive. Seems slightly apathetic. Didn’t bother with the makeup.

A bridesmaid a few spots away from the altar, looking kinda lost and a little sad. She’s not the world’s biggest hottie, but she’s better looking than than half the chicks in the room…more so than the bride…

An uneasy groom who seems to be in no hurry to lift the bride’s veil, and is mumbling the words/vows….all the while casting quick, furtive glances at the bridesmaid on the edge of the scene.

A bride’s father in the first row, holding and fondling a loaded double barreled shotgun.

Want to know who is who?

Bride – Mike Turner
Groom – Dirk Koetter
Bridesmaid – JaQuizz Rodgers
The shotgun-totin’ Father – Mike Smith

I’m just sayin’…..

Big Ray

November 14th, 2012
12:17 am

The Time is Now ,

LOL…thanks…I’m in a bit of a humorous mood. Stay tuned…

Big Ray

November 14th, 2012
12:55 am

Coop ,

BR – you and BL can laugh all you want, but fractured locker rooms are not unheard of. My suppostion of conjecture could certainly be wrong, but there is a ton about this move that smells bad. Call it a hunch. I’m sure in your line of work, you’ve had a hunch before. Sometimes they’re right, sometimes not. But hey, no one at FB EVER gave misinformation or used the media to get THEIR story out. So, you guys are right, I’m the one out in left field.

Finally, some members like SP and myself (and others) have taken heat from JJ, BR, SW and others about engaging with other members, specifically BL and MB. I sat back and watched for a few days and thought about those comments from the OBCM. I don’t think that my opinion or SP’s opinion, or any other’s is less (or more) important than yours. Some on here have been accused of HATING the team, not being fans, and wishing the Falcons would fail. To me, that’s a fairly blatant personal attack and I feel that our retorts to this idiocy is warranted. But if the OBCM don’t like it, then scroll on past or ask D3 to block us. But I’m not listening to censorship when I’m defending myself from being called non-fan.

I’ve re-written a reply to this rant about two dozen times and deleted each one…because what I had to say right off the cuff was just not going to make things better.

I may advise folks to cool down because fighting on this blog (I don’t mean arguing, I mean fighting) is a waste of time. But, since you feel that I’ve unjustly given you heat for engaging BL and MB…in spite of the fact that I’ve done the same…then I’ll not say another word to you about it.

Being called a non-fan…I have never had anything to do with this to my recollection and would like somebody to prove me otherwise.

As for the actual subject at hand:

1) Perhaps all you saw was my light-hearted silly comment. Perhaps you missed the previous comments back and forth with Seminole Warrior. I don’t know. But if you put that comment with all the previous ones, you should not come to the conclusion that I believe everything is fine and dandy in the village of Falconville.

2) I have no hunch about this move because it shocked me and I really have no idea what to think. The only dots I can connect right now is that we have two new Coordinators, an unspoken (at least to us) mandate from Arthur Blank (yeah…I don’t buy the part about Smitty’s seat not being hot one bit, sorry), and guys being cut in the middle of the season. Did it not strike anybody as odd that Smitty/TD do NOT have a history of making these kinds of moves? Not since both took over in their present positions have prominent guys like Polite and Edwards been cut in the middle of the season. What’s your hunch on that?

3) Not once did I say anything about this NO game NOT exposing our flaws. I think I was as vocal as anybody about those issues. But apparently that got missed as well. Do I think we have common issues that we had last season? Yeah. I’ve only spent all season saying that. But I also see (or so I think) solutions.

That’s all I gotta say about this right now.

We can discuss this sh!t or we can fight about who is pissing on who’s opinion. Personally, I’m all for the former, and I refused to engage in the latter anymore. I’m sick of it.

Big Ray

November 14th, 2012
12:59 am

It also strikes me as ironic that with the first loss of the season comes a blow-up amongst Cage Members.

Irony thick enough to chew on. Thank God the team isn’t like the fans. Or they damn sure would not be 8-1.

Let me amend that statement, seeing as how I can’t prove that the locker room isn’t disintegrating, nor can I prove that it’s NOT disintegrating, and apparently saying that you have an opinion to either degree is going to get you blog-lynched….

Oh to hell with it….

[...] Atlanta Falcons: Birds Fall to Saints All the media-elite-talking-heads may very well be ecstatic, the Falcons finally lost & they lost to everyone's favorite darlings, the hated Saints. But hey, it's only the regular season &, as we all know, the regular season doesn't matter, right? The … Read more on Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog) [...]

BobbyDawg

November 14th, 2012
4:37 am

Post Dahl — I’ll have to remember that one. How the head cheese in the Falcons office could let big Harvey get away is beyond me. I guess they figured that he wasn’t ready to make the big bucks so they let our running game walk out the door. Then they turn around a year or two later and pay Ray Edwards big money to come in and be a great pass rusher. I love my Birds but sometimes seems that they can’t tell a diamond from a rhinestone.

BobbyDawg

November 14th, 2012
4:41 am

PS — I always thought Screen Pass was a great name !

Birdman

November 14th, 2012
5:59 am

Morning Cage
Seems some in here have a lot on there minds . Great reads from a lot of you . I can promise you that the ones making the paychecks for this team with all the bells and whistles going off in there heads don.t think about are care what is being said on this blog. But it is a fans blog not a players are coaches blog.
8 wins in a row !! That is something to be proud of .But 3 years in the playoffs and can,t get past the first round is not.What good is it to be hot and not matter in the end.Even if us as fans don,t like the end results. We still keep watching them play.

All have a blessed day

Wabe

November 14th, 2012
7:15 am

I took Koetter’s comments simply as ‘coach speak’.

Despite what we all think about Turner, they’re not just gonna do him like they did Ray Edwards. Why? Simple. Despite Turner’s struggles and having lost a step, he has actually performed for the Falcons throughout his time here in Atlanta. Yeah, his best days may seem like a longggg time ago, but the mere fact that he’s had a couple games this season where he’s broken out in the 4th quarter will keep Smitty/Koetter/TD open to him getting carries.

I think what Koetter said doesn’t really tell us what he’s feeling. He knows Turner’s lost a step. And, coaches aren’t gonna let one player take the brunt of the blame. They’ll chalk it up to ‘it’s a team thing’. I remember when our secondary was getting abused a couple years back and Mike Smith would constantly have to answer questions about the secondary. How would he respond? Smitty: “It’s more than just the guys on the back end. The guys up front have to do a better job of getting to the opposing QB to take some pressure off the guys on the back end.” Now, he makes a valid point. But, it doesn’t excuse the fact that our secondary was clearly not cutting it. But, coach speak doesn’t pin it all on one guy, or one group of guys. Coach speak emphasizes team work, etc. I’m sure Smitty knew it was mainly the secondary. Why else would they go out and sign Dunta Robinson to a monster contract in the offseason? They knew all along what the issue was. But, they weren’t gonna speak up about it to the media, they’ll keep that stuff to themselves.

So, with this Turner issue, I think it’s the same bit. They know what the issue is, but they’re not gonna come out and throw Turner under the bus. They’ll give us the ‘coach speak’, but what they do in this upcoming game and the games to come will speak volumes regarding what they feel the real problem is. Should they continue to ride Turner, they’re thinking it’s O-Line issues. If Quizz’s carries start to increase, that ‘coach speak’ doesn’t tell us what they really felt.

Wings

November 14th, 2012
7:36 am

Big Ray I knew you would cover it from all angles. I never expected the wedding story; it was great.

When I read the Koetter article, I was kinda piss@d. Does the Falcons’ upper echelon of coaches think the fans have not seen what has transpired in the past few years, and do they think the fans aren’t capable of seeing problems. Michael Turner is part of the problem. Football players don’t improve with “old” age.

Then I concluded it was not Koetter’s message but it was Mike Smith’s message. Koetter was delivering it for Mike Smith as noted by the shot gun reference in your wedding story. According to BM, many jumped on the messenger and BM defended Koetter. And here is the rub with BM and BL, both want to control the opinions of all others. How can “you” say anything negative, etc……

I suggest that BM reread Coach Ken Strickland’s post shown below again. The cage has its history of identifying problems with the team, and it has a good record of being RIGHT.

Ken Strickland:
This isn’t rocket science we’re dealing with here. Common sense should tell anyone that after 3yrs of running the same play and the same runner in the same short yardage situations, that DEFs know what to expect with Turner in the gm. Our total unwillingness to pass to him or run him outside in short yardage situations makes it a helluva lot easier for DEFs to figure out what’s coming.

What we’re doing in short yardage situations now is what we routinely did under Mularkey as part of our overall OFF.

darrell starks

November 14th, 2012
7:47 am

Turner is not the issue,

Todd Mcclure is getting push around up front with his lack of strength, this allow for DT have controll of line of scrimmage allowing the hole to be clog up front, this is why the Falcons can not run the ball on short yardage.

Changes is need at center or adjustment.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

darrell starks

November 14th, 2012
7:50 am

On short yardage Coach need take Mcclure out and move Konz to center and let Holmes play guard with Mike Johnson at fullback and give the ball to Turner.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

darrell starks

November 14th, 2012
7:56 am

Special in the red zone inside the 10yards take Mcclure out.

BAKER, BLALOCK, KONZ, HOLMES, CLABO

On short yardage or in side the 10yard line.

Falcons must have strength up the middle for shortyards.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!

darrell starks

November 14th, 2012
8:02 am

Travian Robertson is the the only true NT on this team.

Will he started on Sunday ?

I most definitely hope so.

When your Rank 25th against the run then changes must be made on DL.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!

darrell starks

November 14th, 2012
8:08 am

3 – 4 Defense

KROY, BAB, TRAVIAN, PETERS, ABRAHAM

NICHOLAS, ROBERT JAMES

ASANTE, MOORE, DECOUD, DUNTA

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!

Zoomie

November 14th, 2012
8:27 am

I’ve always been intrigued with the goal-line stand, especially when it’s successfully executed against 1st-and-goal on the one-yard line. It’s a rare occurrence in the NFL. Typically, a team with 1st-and-goal on the one gets the touchdown.

Here’s my take on it: an O-lineman’s job is to block and move defenders. By virtue of them collecting a paycheck in the NFL, they are deemed to be among the best in the world at their craft. When you have these things in your favor: 1) you know the play and where the run is going and , 2) you know the snap count, no matter how good the defenders are and who’s in your backfield, if you can’t move the football one yard, THREE MEASLY FEET, when it has to be done, you have no business being a starting O-lineman in the NFL. Sounds harsh, but that’s what I truly believe.

Mud Duck, and apparently, the rest of the big-uglies, doesn’t/don’t like answering to the media. They darn sure should be answering to somebody!

PoolerSpirit

November 14th, 2012
8:58 am

Loved the note that Vick is soon to be 231 years old in dog years!

And Big Ray breaking down what Kooter said was another reason I have to read this blog every day.

Keep up the great work Cage…

D3

November 14th, 2012
9:20 am

Special in the red zone inside the 10yards take Mcclure out.

BAKER, BLALOCK, KONZ, HOLMES, CLABO

On short yardage or in side the 10yard line.

Falcons must have strength up the middle for shortyards.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!darrell

I love it. When you’re trying to get a push for one yard (if you’re bound and d@mn determined to not get creative with lack of OL personnel), why not have your biggest beast in there? Holmes is liek 6′7, 331 lbs and yet he’s on the sideline? Or better yet, not even activated. Einstein is my homeboy this week and I’ll keep saying it “when you do something over and over (exact same OL) and expecting different results (2011: NO in OT, Playoffs vs. Giants), that is the definition of insanity.”

LRD

November 14th, 2012
9:53 am

NFL replay last night.. watched the final series with the pass being knocked down in the end zone… and 1) Ryan was backpedaling throwing off his back foot.. no velocity on the ball allowed defender to close… 2) Pressure from the right side of the line forcing Ryan backwards. 3) Ryan steps forward into the pocket allowing him to move into the throw with velocity OR allowing a split more second to gland to his right and see Gonzo wide open. Frustrating watching it over and over and over… but water over the dam.

I am not overly concerned at this point. However, if we do not come out and score at least 14 in the first half of the cards game I will start getting a bit more worried. In some ways, I expect the cardinal game to be a (for lack of better descrption) a testing game.. where we will try some different looks to see what the results are…
With Tampa in a week and then short week to get ready for the Saints..and then Carolina , Giants… we have entered the crux of the schedule ( master of obvious eh?).

The Time is NOW (formerly Whynot Us)

November 14th, 2012
9:59 am

D3

The blogmonster got a long post of mine last night (page 9). Thanks if you can help when you get time. Know you’re working now.

Unca' Bob

November 14th, 2012
10:11 am

***FFL***

Coop,

Ties are broken by bench points.

Coop

November 14th, 2012
10:18 am

UB – Thanks for the FFL update. That, however, is a real kck in the taint to my playoff chances…

Coop

November 14th, 2012
10:24 am

Big Ray – Thanks for the response. First, I loved your take on DK, the OL, and Turner. Second, your wedding analogy was magnificent. I completely agree! At the end of the day, Smitty is the one holding the shotgun. Playcalling and execution may not be enacted y Smitty, but he is staring ovr the double barrels at those who do enact.

As for the rant, I was taking a broad rush and using several folks as examples. I didn’t mean to imply that everyone I mentioned had called everyone else a non-fan. I have no recollection of you ever questioning fandom.

Coop

November 14th, 2012
10:25 am

Zoomie – Well said.

D3

November 14th, 2012
10:26 am

Time is Now — Post is out my friend.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 14th, 2012
11:15 am

I will continue to advocate for Antone Smith. Antone, Jacquizz and Snelling are a better fit than Turner, IMO, in the new vertical attack style passing offense. Rather than me shooting off at the mouth, writing checks my azz can’t cash, I will put up a few eyebrow raising preseason stats that will show why I’m lobbying for Antone. There are know conclusive reg season stats on Antone, with this being his 3rd season with the Falcons, he’s only recorded a couple of touches in the regular seasons.

2010 Preseason Rushing

Antone Smith: 32-124 yds/att 3.9
M. Turner: 28-108 3.9
J. Snelling: 18-59 3.3

2011 Preseason rushing

Antone Smith: 17-124 yds/att 7.3
M. Turner: 18-54 3.0
J.Snelling 16-71 4.4
*Quizz Rodgers 27-120 4.4

2012 Preseason Rushing

Antone Smith 23-72 yds/att 3.1
M. Turner 18-49 2.7
J.Snelling did nor participate (injured)
Quizz Rodgers 22-85 3.9

Three year preseason averages for A. Smith, M. Turner:

A. Smith: 72 atts, 320 yds, 4.4 yds per

M. Turner: 64 atts. 211 yds, 3.3 yds per

Two year preseason averages for J. Snelling, Quizz R:

J. Snelling: 34 atts, 103 yds, 3.5 yds per

Quizz Rodgers: 49 atts, 205 yds, 4.1 yds per

I know these are preason numbers…but, IMHO, still a good barometer of production.

Matty Bicep

November 14th, 2012
11:19 am

Time, you said I would like you post, you did not tell me it would bring tears to my eyes.

“I was there when General Lee and the Gritz Blitz beat the Vikings in ATL on Monday Night Football”……………THAT was my introduction to the Falcons. It was that fall when I was told we were going to move to Atlanta, I was still living in NJ, and I was fearful. I remember my dad putting the game on TV and telling me this where we are going, and is “our” new team (not the Giants), and he said “things are gonna be alright”. My dad passed away 7-8 years later, way, way too soon, this is my very first memory of my dad and I bonded as men. I think I was 10, we were jumping around, screaming at our tiny TV, I was allowed to say up late to watch the game, I remember the room of the house I was in, my mom and sister coming downstairs saying WTF is going on like woman do when men are acting like men, it was me an him….and the Falcons. Man, I am gonna cry.
———
I was enthusiastic about the draft the year AB hired TD and MS, but to be honest I was not particularly enthusiastic about either hire….Ok, composure back…Ditto here. We got dumped by Parcells, got a “young and upcoming guy from a winning organization” (I thought of Dan Henning), and some nobody coach from a loser franchise. (figured we are going on the cheap, saving a few bucks).
—–
I did my research (more than normal) and waited for draft day. When it arrived, I was ambivalent about Matty Ice and Baker but thought the rest of the draft was an unmitigated disaster….I was curious to see what we would do, I was not as plugged in as you, optimistically I thought we were 2-3 years from 8-8; I was thinking post Smitty, I had little hope….But then I remember our first preseason game, and Ryan got the ball with 2 minute left in the half, and sorta milked it down the field, making good reads and working the clock. I remember having thinking, hmmm. By the end of the Pre Season I was sold on Ice, I remember telling my friend that this team is not SO bad, and might even go 8-8…He scoffed and said Ryan will get killed, we have no line. I agreed…..But Bordreaux worked wonders (not that chop blocking crap), MM, BVG….They brought us to respectability, they brought the process…They had a plan for the first time in 40 plus years.

So, the process has brought us:
From laughing stock to respectability in once season.
Back to Back winning Season.
The development of the best QB in Falcon history.
Now on season 5, we are still breaking new ground, even if we go one and done, get got our first 8-0 start.Nobody said the process would be complete overnight.

Sure I want it all, and I want it now, this is America, right? But I respect the process. Am I too optimistic? Maybe, but to quote the old man when I told him I was scared of moving to GA, “everything is going to be alright”. and he was correct.

Paddy O

November 14th, 2012
11:45 am

Big Ray – that may have been the funniest angle you’ve posted. and yes, Mike Turner is an ugly bride- looked hot when we started dating, got a ring, and let herself go. so now, she can barely push herself out of the chair to get to the chapel. but, daddy’s got that shotgun, so everything is ALRIGHT.

Paddy O

November 14th, 2012
11:48 am

darrell- Turner IS the problem – he has NO lateral agility; lacks speed to get outside (remember Bruce Carter running him down, despite both essentially starting from the same distance from the point of impact?). If Turner gets tackled by a D lineman who has penetrated out O line, hit the turf and simple trying to grab Turners ankles, and Turner can NOT avoid the guy on the ground, he is a ROLLING STONE. with very rough edges.

Arno

November 14th, 2012
11:48 am

Great stuff NOWtime and MB. My loyalty (with all its lean joys and frequent disappointments) goes back to the P’tree Bart days, so to have consistent success now almost seems unreal. And thanks to D3 and the AJC for this great blog. I mostly lie in the weeds here, but really appreciate the insights and intensity.

Paddy O

November 14th, 2012
11:56 am

Coop – wings has noticed what I have – a couple guys here WANT TO CONTROL WHAT YOU SAY. I’ve never called anybody a non-fan; I’ve pegged both you and SP as the most negative guys on here – both of you accept that as a proud fact and continue to post your perspective – most of the time I read what you say and look for evidence to support your positions – vast majority of the time you are correct – SW has summed it up by calling it a disconnect. A good read. ON our last goal line stand that failed – the play where Mike Johnson was subbed at a TE, Johnson ran a route to the right of the line; Tony G also ran a route to the right of the line, slightly deeper than Johnson – the Saint covering Johnson pullled off him and shaded Tony G- that forced MR2 to throw the ball a little shallower than he intended – allowing the Saint defending Tony G to deflect it – that was one of the worst designed play of the game.

Paddy O

November 14th, 2012
12:00 pm

regarding turner wasted plays – about 13 in the last game – against average and crummy NFL teams -you (Falcons) can throw away a dozen plays and still triumph. Against the top 25%, where the victory comes down to 2 or 3 crucial plays, those wasted plays come back and bite you – which if you are a cause and effect observer make be the key reason we lose come playoff time – we squander too many plays with Turner in playoffs – and those Turner plays ARE EASILY PREDICTED BY THE OPPOSITION. Watch for these WASTED plays in our games against our division colleagues.

Big Lou

November 14th, 2012
12:08 pm

Wabe

Can we stop the us versus them routine. MB and I are two completely different posters overall. Let’s focus on blogging and not on individuals.

D3

November 14th, 2012
12:09 pm

SOMEBODY — Preach it brother. That’s where I absolutely lose patience with Smitty, his stubbornness, and refusal to change. Just because you try something, such as giving guys like Antone Smith a few carries here and there, doesn’t mean you have to stay that way. If it doesn’t work, you can always go back to the status quo. I’ll never forget a few years ago when Gartrell Johnson (I think) got a quick pitch and took it almost 40 yards for a touchdown, and looked mighty fast doing it. Was he ever heard from or seen again?……….Nope.

Same goes for the offensive line. I said way back in March that if we trot out the EXACT SAME offensive line from a year ago, why in the Hades should we expect anything different? Blalock is the only rock on that line that shouldn’t have been in question. OK, so you don’t want to start rookie Lamar Holmes at LT on day one, particularly after his injury. Sure. OK, so you want to start Reynolds at RG and not Konz. That doesn’t mean that you are stuck that way forever? Mix it up. Bring in some of these guys when the game is out of hand. Get a look at them. I understand that 90% of your decisions you make in practice, but sometimes you just have guys that hit another gear when they’re in the game. But we’ll never know the difference, because Smitty doesn’t play them. Same goes for Sidbury on defense.

D3

November 14th, 2012
12:15 pm

Sure you guys have seen this, but like both of these moves……

Wide receiver Tim Toone and tight end Chase Coffman were signed to the Falcons’ active roster on Tuesday.

The team played tight end Tommy Gallarda, who suffered a shoulder injury against the Saints, on injured reserve, and signed tight end Andrew Szczerba to the practice squad.

Toone was signed by the Falcons as an unrestricted free agent on July 25. He was waived-injured by Atlanta on September 6, 2012. Toone caught three passes for 55 yards, including a 39-yard touchdown during the exhibition season.

Looks like Toone (hopefully) will finally put a rest to the Franks as PR era, what a failed venture. I’ve always liked the idea of Coffman and glad he’s getting on the active squad (whether he’ll be activated or not…..who knows. Not knowing Smitty). But for a team in desperate search of goal-line issues, Coffman can run routes and catch the ball. His issue has always been blocking. For gosh sakes, put him in instead of Mike Johnson at TE. Better yet, stop going jumbo at the goalline when we clearly don’t have the OL to do that.

Coop

November 14th, 2012
12:24 pm

Paddy – You’re correct, though, I’m not negative… Just realistic. :)

Paddy O

November 14th, 2012
12:35 pm

Heck, when things are going along APPEARING to be good, yet there are nagging continued problems – last 2 or 3 years – Ken Strick was mad as a wet hen – we were squandering out talent. Now, with us leaning more toward passing/WCO – he is a lot calmer/satisfied – and, the team is much more explosive. I still think the first half of the NO game was Smitty’s take on how the defense should have been arranged; once Nolan got a look at what Brees was trying to do, he adjusted so the defense worked. I saw Ray Edwards a lot in the 2nd half; so his release is VERY odd. wonder if the paper will actually interview Ray directly. find out what the coaching staff told him.

Greg Mendel

November 14th, 2012
12:36 pm

(With apologies to Big Ray:)

Minister: If any one can show just cause why this couple may not be lawfully joined together, let them speak now or forever… um, er, I see a hand raised in the back.

Bride’s Father: Sit down, Arthur!

Minister: Ahem…

Bride’s Father: You, too, Mularkey!!!!

Paddy O

November 14th, 2012
12:38 pm

consider – last year Turner had 1300 yards – about 81 per game – if in each game he had 25 carries, and typically had a single break out run of 40 yards; that mean the other 24 carries averaged 1.71 yards. Those are wasted plays. Turner is now an anchor on our team. He needs to be phased out. Remember Quizz with that burst around the right side of the line, I think he picked up 18 yards? Could Turner do that? Not this year.

Wings

November 14th, 2012
12:44 pm

D3 have you noticed no matter how many blockers are signed the running game doesn’t change.

JB Falcon

November 14th, 2012
12:55 pm

The time is NOW, excellent handle. A lot of us have been saying that since the very first game. That was a very good opening statement you made last night.Been there, done that , and looking forward to doing it some more.

MB, my blast on DK last night was, in no way, a reflection on my loyalty as a fan, although I can appreciate your thoughts on that. You asked if you were too optimistic? I don’t think it is possible to be too optimistic. I suppose optimism can be overdone to become a hinderence in the big picture but we are all individuals and have different levels.

I was glad to read the reason for RE’s release and am looking forward to the changes that will be made from here on out. I STILL want a Atlanta Falcon Super Bowl hat!

Wings

November 14th, 2012
1:05 pm

And just because one doesn’t defend or doesn’t criticize the Falcons in no way defines a fan.

I see things that could be improved and I criticize. I am not going to defend the players or coaches when I see things that are not done properly. I am a fan because I say I am a fan.

Matty Bicep

November 14th, 2012
1:11 pm

I like to spend the rest of the season on 3rd and 1 going play action to him and sending JJ, RW and Gonzo deep and letting matty take his pick. We get a couple of those, that will get teams thinking a little differently.

D3

November 14th, 2012
1:14 pm

RE: that interview with Koetter about the running game………it better be coachspeak, because if it’s a genuine feeling, than we’ll be seeing 0-4 in the playoffs. Sad, but true.

Wabe

November 14th, 2012
1:29 pm

Big Lou

November 14th, 2012
12:08 pm

Wabe

Can we stop the us versus them routine. MB and I are two completely different posters overall. Let’s focus on blogging and not on individuals.

———-

Not sure what you’re talking about here bro? I didn’t reference you nor MB in my post.

Arno

November 14th, 2012
1:45 pm

Koetter: Turner never had a chance. Which was Turner’s biggest obstacle– the NO Saints or the play calling? I don’t blame Turner– you can’t make a bowling ball into a soccer ball. They know what Turtner can do. Either use him properly or don’t use him at all.

Big Lou

November 14th, 2012
1:50 pm

Wabe

Apologies, I meant Wings, who obviously has a hard-on for me on this blog. I can’t get through one D3 post without him saying something about or to me.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 14th, 2012
2:01 pm

Big Ray definitely put things in perspective with that light-hearted (shotgun) wedding analogy.

Greg Mendel, awesome ad-libbing…too funny.

Zoomie

November 14th, 2012
2:14 pm

MT33 is like the Sta-Puft Marshmallow Man. He looks big and imposing, but he kind of just poofs up to the line, mashes into the backs of his linemen, then does the slow-motion melt in the back field.

If he does get an opening, though, he looks really scary to the opposing DBs, kind of like the giant, angry Sta-Puft man in the Ghost Busters movie . . .

(As you can tell, I’m getting pretty disgusted with the deja-vu we’re seeing in the O-line and running game; we’re halway through our second season with the same unaddressed issues!)

Matty Bicep

November 14th, 2012
2:36 pm

What angers me about the playoff red herring is it was created by the Vick camp to try and prove that MV7 is better than Ryan.

However, the more people who buy into it, to more pressure it puts on the staff to show something every game that “proves” something impossible to prove, the outcome of a football game that MIGHT be played in future will be.

Remember when the Browns kept fumbling and losing playoff games?

But as a fan, I am not buying into what the Vick fans created, that a playoff game is any different than any other game. I don’t want our coaches stressing and nutting up at 8-1. I think by endlessly talking about losing in the playoffs, the more we are part of the problem.

If I am wrong, I will stand tall, I am not afraid of some stupid made meaningless benchmark. It is not about winning a playoff game, it is about winning a championship game. A win in a wild card round does NOTHING to me any more than a bye does, it gets me to the 2nd round, and that much closer to the playoffs. I will NOT let the logic of Vick apologists effect my sense of logic.

D3

November 14th, 2012
2:46 pm

I don’t blame Turner– you can’t make a bowling ball into a soccer ball. Arno

That just got me a belly laugh my friend. Never heard that one. Well, by goodness, they’re evidently going to break their d@mn foot trying to make a bowling ball into a soccer ball. Funny, funny stuff.

D3

November 14th, 2012
2:48 pm

MT33 is like the Sta-Puft Marshmallow Man. He looks big and imposing, but he kind of just poofs up to the line, mashes into the backs of his linemen, then does the slow-motion melt in the back field.Zoomie

Man, ya’ll are just killing it today. Evidently Big Ray’s comedic shotgun wedding analogy has evoked a comedy competition here in The Bird Cage. Absoutely hysterical :grin:

Matty Bicep

November 14th, 2012
2:48 pm

BM defended Koetter

I did not defend Koetter, I said let the guy do his job. Really, after 9 games, and an 8-1 record the poor guy is at his wits end. Any other town, he is the toast, but here, OMG, he’s gonna lose. “We have a history of being right”. Somehow, I am sure if they do win, you will be “right” also.

The Time is NOW (formerly Whynot Us)

November 14th, 2012
2:50 pm

D3 – Thanks!

Geo

November 14th, 2012
3:01 pm

Matty Bicep

MB:
November 14th, 2012
1:11 pm
I like to spend the rest of the season on 3rd and 1 going play action to him and sending JJ, RW and Gonzo deep and letting matty take his pick. We get a couple of those, that will get teams thinking a little differently.

Agreed. I can’t understand why they never use the fact that the opposing defense sees the Turner up the middle formation and sells out to stuff it. Fake it to him! By the time they recover, there will be six on the scoreboard. Case in point: first play of the Giants playoff game. It was obvious they were like, “we’re gonna stop Turner and we’ll win that way,” and the Falcons were like “we’re gonna run Turner right at you and stomp your nuts and win that way.” The smart thing to do is to use the situation to your advantage. We could have gone play action on that first play and flicked it to Julio over the middle for a big gain. But Turner was stopped cold and we were like, “oh no, we can’t run, we’re gonna lose.” You’ve got to have misdirection. Give the other team something to think about. Make them worry about all your weapons, every time. We’ve seen how well it works this year. Koetter alluded to the fact that he would liked to go back to it, with the comment, “maybe we should treat 3rd and 1 like 3rd and 10.” Meaning not line up in the obvious jumbo package. Matt had a very successful QB sneak earlier in the game with the spread formation.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 14th, 2012
3:13 pm

D3, I know I sound like a broken record wanting to see Antone get a crack in a meaningful, regular season game. He (Antone) might put up pedsetrian numbers if given a chance, at worst, that would equal Turners production. I just beleive Antone can manipulate a crease…make positive yardage, opposed to Turner, staging himself 8 yards behind the line of scrimmage, trying to build up a head of steam for a 2 yard loss.

IMHO, Antone has the ability, agility and speed to take a 8 yard Turner run, Turn it into a 30 yard gainer. Just sayin…

D3

November 14th, 2012
3:15 pm

MB / Geo — I agree as well. The issue I think a lot of Cagers have an issue with is that someone (be it Smitty, Koetter, whomever) keeps trying to make us something we aren’t. We aren’t a power-football team and really never have been, but especially now, our strength is our QB and our plethora of awesome receivers (Roddy, JJ, HD, Gonzo, Quizz, DDavis19, Snelling, and even Palmer can catch the ball pretty darn well). Is Mike Johnson at TE really our best option? It worked one time on the first series, but they knew after that to look for it. Our goal-line should have all our best players on the field at the same time. JJ, Gonzo, Roddy, and HD shouldn’t even be a question. Pick your RB, but I’d go with Quizz and Snelling due to their versatility (who ever thinks Turner will catch a pass ever, much less near the goal-line?). As much as I hate them, take a look at what the sAINTS do at the goal-line.

Their best player (arguably) is Jimmy Graham and most times he’s split out wide. So already they have a mismatch nightmare and with good enough timing, he’s all they need. Throw in speedy backs who can catch the ball, tall Marques Colston, speedy Devery Henderson, and all-around good WR Lance Moore, it’s no wonder they’re so good in the red-zone. And with all that, they spread teams out so much that it’s so much easier for guys like Ivory, Sproles, or Thomas to take a handoff in the endzone.

Geo

November 14th, 2012
3:28 pm

I’d also like to challenge conventional wisdom. You need to run the ball, but you don’t have to have a dominant run game. The key is to mix it up and be somewhat ballanced, again, so the defense can’t anticipate. We were doing that. We weren’t gaining that much on the ground, but we were gaining enough. Plus, those quick screens and passes to Rodgers in the flat are as good as runs (always liked how Montana used his running backs like that). Pundits were looking for something to criticize, so they were like, they’re winning, but I don’t see a big ground game. I don’t recall GB having much of a ground game in 2010 either.

Also, another vote for Antone Smith. Since I haven’t watched preseason for years, I’ve never seen him run the ball. But the stats that were put up earlier have me shaking my head about that fact.

snacktastic

November 14th, 2012
3:46 pm

Lots of activity in the Cage after a loss…good to know all the fans haven’t jumped off the deep end.

JB Falcon

November 14th, 2012
4:00 pm

Amusing, Jimmy Graham, NFC offensive player of the week. New leader in NFL for dropper passes, Jimmy Graham.

falcon21

November 14th, 2012
4:16 pm

Matty @ 10:48p, just joking here but Ralph Norwood was a Falcon but I never heard of him kicking, I think he was an o-lineman. I remember Scott Norwood missing wide right in a very big game.

E43

November 14th, 2012
4:26 pm

Seminole Warrior- They could get a back in the draft easily. He… or she… very likely wont be starting next year unless there was an injury.

JB Falcon

November 14th, 2012
4:28 pm

“The elite runners in the game get the ball when everyone in the stadium knows they’re going to get the ball, and they still make their yards.”

That was Don Banks from SI, talking about Arian Foster. Quiet a contrast from us talking abut MT.

I do hope DK & Co figure out where to get one of those magic wands he was talking about.

Big Lou

November 14th, 2012
4:45 pm

http://www.atlantafalcons.com/news/injury-report.html

Sean and Julio did not practice today. If Julio came back to the game… I assume he will be playing against the Cardinals.

I still do not know why Sean is still not practicing. I thought it was a low grade sprain…

But, you know how the falcons are with injuries.

Big Lou

November 14th, 2012
4:53 pm

http://www.atlantafalcons.com/media-lounge/videos/Moving-Forward/0b9df284-7f42-4d9e-9d62-794a824d661d

Matt Ryan interview.

Arizona is coming off the Bye Week, as well. This game will be difficult for the offense. Luckily for our defense, they are doing horrible on offense.

Paddy O

November 14th, 2012
4:57 pm

Other commentary beyond the goal line bad play (execution or play calling, take your pick mish mash); who else thought it was rather idiotic to have Willie Mo covering Graham SINGLE COVERAGE – on that long pass play, with DeCoud ambling over to knock him out of bounds? Now, is that bad scheme or blown coverage?

Big Lou

November 14th, 2012
5:06 pm

http://www.atlantafalcons.com/media-lounge/videos/No_Consolation_in_Loss/6896aa8d-7c7c-4fd6-af67-3e4da2228722

Mike Smith interview.

Crap, no HD returning… but can we get somebody else? Toone, maybe?

The Time is NOW (formerly Whynot Us)

November 14th, 2012
5:22 pm

Thanks to Matty Bicep (11:19 am), Arno (11:48 am), and JB Falcon (12:55pm). JB, I owe you for the inspiration for the moniker, brother. And I want that hat too!

Just gotta dodge in and out here, but I want to go on record. I recognize that fans don’t want their team to be good, they want their team to be the best. I enjoy the banter and the various fan viewpoints here. But being good ain’t a bad spot to start from and it SURE beats what this franchise historically has been.

Later cage…

Big Ray

November 14th, 2012
5:32 pm

Coop ,

Glad to not be misunderstanding each other. I value your input. Perhaps your most dogged point has also been the most accurate – winning the trench war on both sides of the ball.

Glad you enjoyed the analogy…I’ve been saving that one, LOL…

Wabe

November 14th, 2012
5:32 pm

Honestly, I’m tempted to let Julio and Spoon sit this one out.

I know there are no ‘gimmes’ in the NFL. But, I honestly don’t see this game as one we can’t win with either of those guys out.

Especially Spoon. The Cardinals offense isn’t exactly lighting it up out here right now. They can’t block for anything. They can’t run it or throw it. I’d just let Spoon get an extra week of rest this week and use the extra days to get back to 100%.

I know the offense looks completely different without Julio. But, again, I don’t see us in a shootout this week vs. Arizona. I think we can manage to go minus Julio for a week here. Let the dude rest up and get back up to a 100%.

I’d rather have both guys 100% as we near the home stretch and get into the playoffs,

Big Ray

November 14th, 2012
5:35 pm

MB ,

What angers me about the playoff red herring is it was created by the Vick camp to try and prove that MV7 is better than Ryan.

Some folks might think you’re coming out of left field (or section H of the parking lot) but I say damn good point .

Big Ray

November 14th, 2012
5:35 pm

Greg Mendel ,

Never apologize for improv….that was great!

The Time is NOW (formerly Whynot Us)

November 14th, 2012
5:36 pm

Wabe you make an interesting and valid point. Nonetheless, I’ll feel much more confident if we don’t screw up and turn a “good” loss (if there is such a thing) into a losing streak.

Big Ray

November 14th, 2012
5:45 pm

http://blogs.ajc.com/atlanta-falcons-blog/2012/11/14/atlanta-falcons-tomlinson-faulk-weigh-in-on-michael-turner-run-game/?cxntfid=blogs_atlanta_falcons_blog

I really didn’t think much of what Faulk had to say, other than he’s telling the story right (except we’ve already done this years ago). The stats faulk puts up, I know I put on this very blog a year ago. That doesn’t mean I’m Mr. Super Smart guy, it means that Turner’s runs and how they come (one big run always brings up his paltry average the last couple of years) is not NEW news. Been that way for a couple of years.

I get what Tomlinson is saying…but I’m gonna call BS. Why BS? Because while what he’s saying may be true of Turner, it wasn’t always true.

Who the hell wants a RB that needs 20 carries per game to “get going?” Really? So by which carry can we expect him to “get going”? If that’s true, then why did Quizz produce immediately? Dude had 3 carries. The first two went for 5 yards or so apiece. The third one went for 18 yards. He never saw the ball again on a running play.

So if “getting into a rhythm” is the magic potion…then guess what? You should use the guy who gets there in 3 carries…screw the guy who needs 18-20 to “get there.”

Because that is exactly what is happening. I can tell you right now, Turner is averaging roughly 16-18 or so carries per game by now. Certainly no less than 15. So I’m just not buying it….if he can’t get us something in a handful of runs here and there, time to bring a new threat to the table.

I’m going to keep saying it over and over…Put Quizz in there in the first half. He’s a double/triple threat guy. He can bounce it to the outside and/or make guys miss. He can catch out of the backfield. And he can line up like a slot receiver. Turner can do none of those things. Line him up there in the second half or after you have a sizeable lead, and let him pound the heck out of the defense.

But…if he “can’t get going” and it starts to cost you in the form of “3 and outs”…then be smart. Be proactive. Mix Quizz and Snelling in there.

Cutting Turner’s carries in favor of the pass game is a one-trick pony type of move. The smart move involves determining when he gets his carries.

I’m also not saying that Turner shouldn’t ever play in the first half. Just that he shouldn’t be the primary RB unless there is a clear advantage to employing him in such fashion. As it stands now, that is not the case most of the time.

The Time is NOW (formerly Whynot Us)

November 14th, 2012
5:51 pm

Great post, Big Ray! I like the idea of a fresh Turner in the second half. OK, I really outta here now.

Big Lou

November 14th, 2012
6:40 pm

Wabe

Cardinals have a way better defense than the Saints… just saying.

JB Falcon

November 14th, 2012
7:22 pm

Wabe & BL, both good and different points. For what it’s worth, in the rankings last week the Falcons were #1 and NO was #22. This week the Falcons are #2 and AZ is #22. As numbers go, I don’t think AZ has a chance.
I agree with Wabe as far as we do not need to start either player but certainly do not put them on the injured.out list. Let them dress and sit.
I also agree with BL as far as never look a gift horse in the mouth. Look at what NO did.
OR, go with my gut. Make AZ wish they had never made the trip but do not jeopardize the health of our players doing it.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 14th, 2012
7:33 pm

Associated Press captured some very revealing, interesting, post practice interviews (perspectives) from Falcons player commenting on Edwards release…and understanding that every player is expendable, shock waves through the lockeroom when they heard word of his release.

Most interesting, is who moved into No Play Ray locker…hmmmmm…

This just a portion of the AP article.

”That’s the way this game goes,” cornerback Dunta Robinson said. ”You can be replaced.”

In a sign of how quickly things change, Massaquoi had already taken over Edwards’ locker space on Wednesday, claiming a more prominent spot among the other defensive linemen.

”Ray was a great friend of mine,” Robinson said, looking over at Edwards’ former locker. ”I hate to see him go. But it’s a business. Things like this are going to happen when it’s a business.”

JB Falcon

November 14th, 2012
7:50 pm

Truth, do you have a link for that article?

Coop

November 14th, 2012
7:53 pm

Big Ray – Also glad we’re good. I enjoy your input, and yes, I think ALL our woes start with the trenches.

Time is Now – Like the new tag… Now drop the formerly part. Keep up the good posts.

MB – Interesting take on the MV7 over MR2. That was definitely true in the early years. I had thought that folks seemed to move past it since we have been so successful. I opined that it was a north/south bias that was instigating the “playoff” argument. But your take is mort specific. Does ESPN hate Atlanta cause of what “we” did to Vick? Maybe we’re both correct…

Arno

November 14th, 2012
8:10 pm

Here is the breakdown (for what it’s worth) of the playoff argument, that the Falcons stink because in three out of four years playoff runs, we have zero wins.

The teams that have reached the playoffs in three of the past four years and their records in those playoffs:

Steelers 3-1
Saints 4-2
Packers 4-2
Colts 2-2
Pats 2-3
Eagles 2-3
Falcons 0-3

Ravens are the only team that made the playoffs all past four years and are at 5-4.

JB Falcon

November 14th, 2012
8:21 pm

“Time is Now – Like the new tag… Now drop the formerly part. Keep up the good posts.” – Coop

Coop thanks, I been wanting to say that but felt bad enough for saying something in the first place. It’s like when SP changed his handle, didn’t fool anyone.

The time is now? I christen you “NOW.” One of my favorite sayings is “If you want it get on it!”
NOW finishes the saying up.

JAW

November 14th, 2012
8:23 pm

Hi! Bloggers, this is my first comment. Probably my last. I hope y’all can educate me about a few of my problems? Most of this opinion is from watching football on TV for about 40+ yrs. after I quit buying tickets to the Falcons. My ground rules are this. I don’t have the equipment for TIVO, Slomo, Freeze, etc., just DirectTV satellite.

1. How do fans like me rate, compare abilities, locate whoever screwed-up/looked good in the group of players TV allows me to see.
2. Considering all the rotations of personnel packages/players almost every play, how do you know who’s on the field, Falcons and opponents?
3. In the bygone era the analyst kept the audience abreast of personnel on/off the gridiron first.
4. Now and for a long time all I see is a coach with a clipboard over his mouth and headset or a view of a player, owner, sideline gimmicks, and/or whatever. I like the cheerleaders.
5. Seemingly the rest of the time is who is a pro bowler, all pro, Hall of Fame, S.B. Rings, elite, stats of no consequence.
6. I know this is a TV commitment of personality issues (who talks the most wins). How do I obtain vision for my own interpretation of a play/game?

falcon21

November 14th, 2012
8:42 pm

@ 8:20p, finish your 40 ounce and call it a night!

Coop

November 14th, 2012
8:57 pm

Laugh all you want douche, when our team wins the Super Bowl, we won’t have to cheat.

JB Falcon

November 14th, 2012
9:01 pm

21, :) We both know better but sometimes you just can’t help yourself.

falcon21

November 14th, 2012
9:03 pm

My bad JB, could not help it!

Coop

November 14th, 2012
9:11 pm

JAW – For me, you have to know what you’re looking for and zero in on that. It takes some predicting and you’ll miss things, but I start with the personnel packages. First, I know all the numbers. It goes too fast to try to recognize who’s in if you don’t have them committed. So before the play, I take a quick scan and considering the down and distance and the time of the game, I get a small set of things to zero in on. If you practice, it will become second nature. Though this may sound stupid, if you have Madden NFL, play that ALOT. I know, but if your are really a novice, you can learn the names of plays, packages, etc. I taught my nephew a ton about football by playing Madden with him.

Anyway, as an example, when we were 1st and goal at about the five, the first thing I looked for was how many WRs. I saw 3, plus TG. Immediately, I think of 3 plays. The first is a fade to JJ or RW. For me, the key on that is single coverage. Second play is TG either back of the end zone (most likely) or right at the goal line. TG is almost always at the post. He rarely goes to the corner, but can. The third play is a delayed draw to the RB (least likely for that formation).

That doesn’t mean I’m right, but if you do this, you’ll see why so many see the Falcons being unpredictable. The trends become disturbing.

So, know your players. Scan the O package quickly and see how their D is matching up. If we look run, do they have 7 or 8 in the box. If we look pass, where are their safeties. Make a prediction and see what happens. Then watch the replays and see how you did. Once you get our O down, you can do the same in reverse. Scan their O and see what our D is lining up to stop. D is more difficult to me.

Finally, if their killing us on the pass, focus on the line. If their killing us on the run, I say watch the LBs, but the DL is still the key.

Really finally, watch the NFL breakdown shows. Jaws (no pun) does amazing work breaking down plays and can help teach you what to look for.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 14th, 2012
9:21 pm

Coop, I have a sneaky suspicion that 8:23pm comment you responded to, was a spoof. IMO.

falcon21

November 14th, 2012
9:25 pm

Damn Coop, I thought I was one of a kind. Guess I was wrong. I catch myself watching our o-line break down now more than anything.

falcon21

November 14th, 2012
9:28 pm

Later Coop and JB, y’all have a good night.

JB Falcon

November 14th, 2012
9:40 pm

Coop. I can see JAW’s answer. “Say Whaaaat”?

Coop

November 14th, 2012
9:42 pm

21 – On D, I look to see if our CBs are playing off (nearly always), then I try to identify a blitz. After the snap, I focus on the DTs, then the DEs, then the play is usually happening.

Jaw – Welcome by the way. Feel free to post more.

Coop

November 14th, 2012
9:45 pm

JB – Too much? I was seriously trying to be helpful.

Big Ray

November 14th, 2012
9:54 pm

Coop ,

If ESPN is mad about that, then they should be mad at Philly and Andy Reid as well. Ooops…too many facts, too many similarities, and OHHHH the irony that the man who figured out how to stop MV7 in the first place is the same man who has discovered that nothing about MV7 has changed. He still can’t read good disguises by defenses, still plays too recklessly with the ball at times, still is a turnover machine, STILL IS NOT A LEADER.

ESPN can suck a fat one. Andy Reid spent $100 million on a guy he figured out years ago. Get mad at him

Matty Bicep

November 14th, 2012
10:05 pm

Yea, the Vick folks said that Ryan can’t win a playoff game, and ESPN picked up on it….I remember when they both said Ryan had a weak arm and can’t throw the long ball.

Coop

November 14th, 2012
10:11 pm

Big Ray – Concur. Frankly, it couldn’t happen to a better franchise. Eff Reid.

As for ESPN, I get the feeling that they think Georgians are just backwoods, white, racists or militant, oppressed, blacks. This is my paranoia, but I really think some in the north look at the south that way. Atlanta is the home of the south and racism. All white Atlantans hate black people and vice versa. So they see the Vick versus Ryan as a racial divide. To a degree, I think that was true at first. I really believe that has mostly passed. But MB may be on to something that the playoff tag is another attempt to elevate Vick above Ryan in Atlanta lore.

Big Ray

November 14th, 2012
10:14 pm

http://espn.go.com/blog/nfcsouth/post/_/id/41748/fixes-for-falcons-in-short-yardage

What does this guy do, archive the Cage blog? I swear I’ve read the words he wrote… on here a dozen times or more.

Except his last suggestion. That ish he came up with all by himself…

The Time is NOW

November 14th, 2012
10:15 pm

Thanks Coop. Done.

JB Falcon – you have nothing to feel bad about. Call me whatever you like my brother, no matter what it is I’ve probably been called worse. :)

The Time is NOW

November 14th, 2012
10:44 pm

Arno (8:10 pm) – Thanks for the breakdown.

DePlane

November 14th, 2012
11:30 pm

Coop, LMAO….dang fine tutelage though!

Big Ray

November 15th, 2012
7:18 am

Coop ,

I think MB is on target, however unfortunate that is. Problem is, there are folks more than willing to take that bait and continue to perpetrate the fraud that it is. Eff them, too…

Big Ray

November 15th, 2012
7:53 am

For the morning laugher….

http://msn.foxsports.com/nfl/story/Week-11-Cheat-Sheet-Dallas-Cowboys-Tony-Romo-Jason-Garrett-Jerry-Jones-poised-for-playoffs-111312

Normally I’d scoff and say that this is typical of those darn talking heads….but I hope he’s right. And then we can match up with them in the postseason and get our first playoff win….bwahahahahahahahahahaha.

Zoomie

November 15th, 2012
8:39 am

I’m all-in on Big Ray’s 5:45 PM post. I’d just add this this: along with more Snelling and Quizz. throw Antone into the mix, as many here advocate, and let’s see a little more “flow” to the blocking schemes, as the team implements more zone blocking. This lets the quicker, shiftier backs pick and choose their creases, and it gets away fron the O-line’s weakness. I’m convinced they’re simply not capable of sustained power blocking.

Am I wrong to observe that the same attributes that make the O-line better pass blockers would make them more effective at zone blocking versus trying to power the defenders off the ball? If the Birds became primarily a zone-blocking crew in run support, wouldn’t it make it more effective the few times they did burst off the line in a power blocking scheme?

What is the weakness, or the downside, in taking this approach? There must be one, otherwise I think we’d be seeing it already.

Coop

November 15th, 2012
8:54 am

Big Ray – Concur. Eff ‘em.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 15th, 2012
9:14 am

Zoomie, IMO, the reason they (Smith/Koetter) are hesitant to implement, or go to the zone blocking exclusively, it will further expose weaknesses in Smitty’s security blanket (that being M. Turner). To go all out to a zone blocking scheme, we would need a one cut and go runningback, we have three of those on the roster, Quizz, Snelling and Antone….but oh no, that would mean benching $7.5 million dollars a year Michael Turner, can’t have that, can we?

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
9:40 am

but oh no, that would mean benching $7.5 million dollars a year Michael Turner, can’t have that, can we?

Well, I think our organization sent clear message about cap number and playing time, or the tolerance of less than 100% effort.

Also, the difference between this team, and past Falcon teams is Ryan. “He’s not a play maker”. Funny how we just gloss over the fact that he had the most passing yards in his career, don’t we all think how Ryan plays will have SOME bearing on how the Falcons will perform in the playoffs?

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
9:41 am

I think MB is on target, however unfortunate that is….LOL

D3

November 15th, 2012
9:53 am

SOMEBODY — Bro’, you’re just on fire my friend, RE: your 9:14 am post. Totally agree. I make this bold prediction now (that’s not really all that bold): if we stick with Turner exactly how we have been the first part of the season, we’ll be looking @ 0-4 in the playoffs, unless Matty Ice can throw for 500 yards and 5 TDs.

D3

November 15th, 2012
11:18 am

So, for those of you who know me, I love me some research and data. In that vein, I decided to take a look at some of the running backs and their respective yardage so far this year and their draft picks. I’m not claiming whatsoever that there’s any conclusive pattern regarding draft picks because there are simply too many variables (type of offense, offensive strategy, injuries, offensive linemen, QB, etc., etc.). The point here is to look at some running backs that have put up good yardage even though they’re not the marquee names in the NFL. Maybe they got their break out of the RB injured in front of them, but the point remains that they’ve made the most of themselves with their opportunity. Here goes………

Player — Round Drafted — Yards — TDs
Stevan Ridley — 3rd — 814 — 6
Alfred Morris — 6th — 793 — 5
Daryl Richardson — 7th — 393 — 0
Jonathan Dwyer — 6th — 355 — 0
Andre Brown — 4th — 321 — 0
Vick Ballard — 5th — 314 — 0
Isaac Redman — Undrafted — 295 — 2
Brandon Bolden — Undrafted — 234 – 2
Jackie Battle — Undrafted — 223 – 3
Joique Bell — Undrafted — 193 — 2
Shaun Draugh — Undrafted — 183 — 2
Bernard Pierce — 3rd — 171 — 1
Robert Turbin — 4th — 167 — 0
Quizz — 5th — 164 — 0

Now take a look at this eye-popping production from this mystery man from college:

Career Total Rushing — 3877 yards — 46 TDs
Career Total Receiving — 1056 yards – 5 TDs

Guess who?………………..If you chose one Jacquizz Rodgers from Oregon State you would be correct. Before I you smash your keyboard against the wall with all the excuses such as level of competition, style of offense, Pac-10 being super weak, spread offense pads numbers, etc., etc, my only point is that the dude has talent. I don’t care who you are or where you play, if you put up those kind of numbers, you have talent. And while Oregon State may not be Alabama or LSU in the SEC, it’s not Division III either.

And by the way………….he did all that in 3 YEARS, not 4.

Final Point —- While Quizz may not be the next Adrian Peterson, he sure as the Hades has as much talent as most or more than the guys listed above. Not to mention that he plays on one of the most talented offenses in the NFL.

Smitty and Koetter — get your heads out of your @ss, drop the security blanket named Michael Turner (I think they’re kind of scared of him), sit his tail on the bench, start Quizz, give him the load of carries, and most importantly, design running plays right along with the open attack offense that we more than have the arsenal for.

D3

November 15th, 2012
11:29 am

Couple final stats:

2012 Stats

Turner – 140 carries – 3.8 yard per carry
Quizz – 45 carries – 3.7 yards per carry
Snelling – 8 carries – 17 yards per carry

BTW, if you go search on ESPN NFL Stats and sort by yards per carry, Quizz doesn’t even qualify on the rankings because he hasn’t even met the minimum numbers of carries, which I guess if 50.

I put a post up earlier in the year about what the split might / should look like back in the off-season. Most of us agreed on in some regards that Turner should get no more than 50% or so of the carries.

Turner — 140/193 — 73%

Quizz — 45/193 — 23%

Snelling — 8/193 — 4%

Yeah, that’s really cutting (Sta-Puf)Turner’s carries back alright.

D3

November 15th, 2012
11:36 am

***correction***

Snelling — 8 carries, 17 yards, 2.1 yards per carry

Wings

November 15th, 2012
11:37 am

D3 remember that Quizz often runs the same predictable plays as run by Turner – straight up the middle into the “brick wall”. His real average needs those plays subtracted.

Wings

November 15th, 2012
11:39 am

Somebody your 9:14 is the TRUTH.

Arno

November 15th, 2012
11:45 am

Man o man, I hate to hear him called Sta-Puf Turner even if it is sort of right on. Who can forget that play D Hall bounced off of him like a paper airplane? Good ol days, I guess. Turner honed his current hedgehog style after that rash of fumbles last year. I wonder if Smith keeps him in for ball protection? I would like to see # of fumbles in the above stats…. We’d love to see a more elastic runningback, especially for our O. Like that guy Ivory. He was like a whirling Dervish, a wad of rubber bands on PCP. Give him a urine test. Kept waiting for us to get a fumble out of him.

Paddy O

November 15th, 2012
11:49 am

I don’t buy the Vick thing. Folks in the NE – and Connecticut is about as white, snobby and elitest as you can get – especially around where ESPN is broadcast from – simply don’t know squat about the south. but, I do think they have this lingering image of jim crow and discrimination -despite Atlanta being a mecca for black success. the NE thinks that professional – super high paid – with public sector unions – make their society better – yet, their response to Hurricane Sandy indicates they are not getting what they pay for.

D3

November 15th, 2012
12:07 pm

Nothing more than coach-speak from Smitty on the Edwards release………..

Edwards’ weekly checks are $176,470.58. The Falcons get paid on Wednesday and he has six more of those coming. He can make more cash this season if he signs with another team.

The Falcons still owe him $1.058,823.53 this season.

Edwards is now an unrestricted free agent and the Falcons must pay the remaining part of this $3 million salary for this season.

“It was a decision that we made that we felt like was going to make our football team better today and in the future,” Falcons coach Mike Smith said. “That’s what you have to do when you make decisions. You’ve got to make decisions for your football team.”

Edwards, who was signed to a five-year, $27.5 million contract, played 25 games for the Falcons and had 3.5 sacks. Smith no longer fit the teams defense with morphs from a 4-3 to a 3-4 and vice versa during games and uses a heavy dose of nickel packages.

His playing time fluctuated wildly. He played as much a 64 percent of the defensive snaps and as low as 16 percent in games this season.

“I don’t want to get into sending messages and what not,” Smith said. “We evaluate every day. We evaluate after every game from top to bottom. We talk about it all the time and it starts with me. Again, it was a decision we made, and we felt like it makes our team better today and it will make our team better in the future.”

I wish DOL or someone else had asked about the $4.5 million they owe him for next year (at least the way the contract reads) and why they were willing to sacrifice that much dough to just let him go. If all we have to pay his is $3 mill for this year, than that’s awesome. But I don’t see where that makes up all the guaranteed money ($11 million) that he signed on his contract.

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
12:20 pm

Coachspeak? Nothing wrong with that. Name a great coach who does not speak it? Noboby better than BB, you just have to learn to interpret it.

“I don’t want to get into sending messages and what not”, That is coachspeak for HELL YEA I am sending a message. I am sending it to high cap, non productive, free agents who frequent Magic City.

I wish DOL or someone else had asked about the $4.5 million they owe him for next year (at least the way the contract reads) and why they were willing to sacrifice that much dough to just let him go…again, it was a mistake signing him, releasing him admitted as much, I don’t know why we want to turn the knife instead of admtting as much.

Also, the National Media, people in NE, they are not our friends.

Wings

November 15th, 2012
12:21 pm

Has the running game changed? I posted this after the NO game last Dec regarding stats.

In 2010, Dahl and Ovie were playing. The reality is not much has changed and that seems to be the problem for HC Smith. Matt Ryan has about doubled his yardage per game since these 2010 losses. A running game that averages about 3 yards per carry will never get you a first down in 3 runs.

Steelers Sept 12, 2010 15-9 OT
MT Carries-19 YDS-42 LG-7
Team Carries-25 YDS-58 AVG-2.3

Eagles October 17, 2010 31-17
MT Carries-15 YDS-45 LG-9
Team Carries-19 YDS-65 AVG-3.4

Saints December 27, 2010 17-14
MT Carries-17 YDS-48 LG-27
Team Carries-22 YDS-75 AVG-3.4

Packers January 15, 2011 48-21
MT Carries-10 YDS-39 LG-12
Team Carries-14 YDS-45 AVG-3.2

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
12:22 pm

One of the criticisms is Smitty does not admit mistakes or move on. He just did it with Edwards, and moved Massaqui into his locker. No message there, huh?

Wings

November 15th, 2012
12:26 pm

Mike Smith – “I don’t want to get into sending messages and what not,” Smith said. “We evaluate every day. We evaluate after every game from top to bottom. We talk about it all the time and it starts with me. Again, it was a decision we made, and we felt like it makes our team better today and it will make our team better in the future.”

Indirect messages don’t work because the people who are supposed to hear them don’t understand and believe they are doing anything wrong.

That statement sounds like Mike Mularkey wrote it.

I wonder what Mr. Charlie would say?????

Wings

November 15th, 2012
12:29 pm

MB as SOMEBODY said, the reason they (Smith/Koetter) are hesitant to implement, or go to the zone blocking exclusively, it will further expose weaknesses in Smitty’s security blanket (that being M. Turner). This is the mistake that Smitty needs to admit to. That of not recognizing Turner is the biggest problem.

I see the Ray Edwards admission as a diversion. After all he wasn’t playing very much. Some changes need to be admitted that will affect those playing.

Wings

November 15th, 2012
12:30 pm

MB NO MESSAGE!!!

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
12:44 pm

I don’t think Smitty goes out admitting mistakes as a “diversion”. I agree, he does not like to do so (who does), and is a little slow to change (who is not). He might keep his hands on the throttle in regards to Koetter, but not Nolan, he won’t put up with it.

Nolan stopped playing Edwards because he was not productive (no sacks?, I think that is pretty non-productive). So, Edwards is reduced to special teams…I wonder how much effort he put in. I wonder how his attitude was? My guess is pretty toxic.

So, guess who else is being prepped for a reduced role? Who else is being told that if they get their feelings hurt and stop giving 100%?

Any, time will tell.

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
12:50 pm

Also Massaqui in the primo locker? You might not think there is a message, and Turner might not get the message, but Quizz does.

Wings

November 15th, 2012
1:00 pm

Quizz doesn’t need a message. You’ve illustrated my point exactly.

I noticed Edwards was the starter on Sunday but Bierman was the starter against the Cowboys. If Nolan stopped playing him why did he start Sunday? Mike Smith is the head coach. I guess that is not him I see making a point to the defense many times during games. Many have said Smitty doesn’t tell the coordinators what to do; it is nonsense. He is involved in everything; it is his nature.

Coop

November 15th, 2012
1:02 pm

MB – I’ll put some stock into Mas when I see his @ss on the field. Aside from that, Smith sends a MUCH bigger message cutting Turner and the cap hit aint as tough to swallow.

Coop

November 15th, 2012
1:05 pm

D3 – Your stats are depressing. I really had hopes after the first three games that Smitty ball was over or at least ending. It’s almost like the 8-0 start made him regress back to it. That dumbass mentality that you build a lead and sit on it, conservative style play was reinforced with our last minute heroics. That’s a recipe for disaster in the playoffs.

D3

November 15th, 2012
1:44 pm

and why they were willing to sacrifice that much dough to just let him go…again, it was a mistake signing him, releasing him admitted as much, I don’t know why we want to turn the knife instead of admtting as much.MB

Going to have to boldly disagree here. That’s not really TD’s modus operandi. Now, if we only owe him the $3 million for this year and that’s it, I’ll completely agree with you. Just go ahead and make the move, admit your mistake, and clear a roster spot.

But again, the way I read the contract and the guaranteed money, I have a hard time thinking that loopholes along will allow the Falcons to walk away from that $4.5 million that’s seemingly owed him. Furthermore, TD is slow and methodical when it comes to pulling the plug on guys, even the ones he inherited (see Jamaal Anderson and Michael Jenkins). Most of the times, TD will simply let them play out their contract and not renew them. At minimum, he’ll let them play out the year and cut them in the off-season. Maybe you’re right about just admitting a mistake and moving on, but his track record says otherwise. I’m thinking that Nolan had a lot to do with this one or they didn’t like his attitude.

Unca' Bob

November 15th, 2012
2:17 pm

D3,

“Again, it was a decision we made, and we felt like it makes our team better today and it will make our team better in the future.”- Coach Smith.

That reads more than Coach speak to me. More like R Ed had become a cancer in our locker.

Zoomie

November 15th, 2012
2:19 pm

I’ll admit it: I’m completely baffled at “the meaning” behind releasing Ray Ed.

The most glaring deficiency on the team is the run game. I’m at a loss to see how release of a non-productive DE makes a statement to the O-line or RBs.

The defense has held its own and made effective adjustments when needed. I think everyone can agree, that if the O had the ability to force 1 stinking yard when it’s needed most, the Falcons would be 9-0 today, so a D player taking the fall for the obvious problem area is confusing to me.

The only thing I’ve seen that really correlates the two is this:”. . . HELL YEA I am sending a message. I am sending it to high cap, non productive, free agents who frequent Magic City.”

It’s just hard for me to believe that’s the intended “message.”

Zoomie

November 15th, 2012
2:22 pm

Of course, then there’s this: “More like R Ed had become a cancer in our locker.”

That makes more sense, but just how bad would he have to be for the team to take the personnel and the financial hit mid-season?

D3

November 15th, 2012
2:43 pm

Zoomie / MB / RE: “Message” — Gotta go with Zoomie on this one. I do not believe in the slightest that this was a “message” to anyone, especially Turner. I do think it sent a very blanket statement of “no one is expendable,” but that doesn’t really seem to apply to our “Black Dot” locker room that TD and Smitty have been hyper-sensitive over since they’ve been here. Ray Ed always carried that risk. I remember the fallout he had with Minnesota and many fans said he started to get a bad attitude there. Obviously, we’ll never know. The only message that Turner will get when he’s on the sideline watching Quizz and Snelling get all his snaps. Honestly, I also thought it was sh!tty of him to make those “their offense / their team” comments. Right afterwards, he started getting his carries again. Seems as though the CS tip-toe (pun intended) around Michael Turner. JMHO

JB Falcon

November 15th, 2012
2:45 pm

Zoomie, I think Unca Bob hit the nail on the head. From what I have read I have gotten the impression that RE’s attitude started going bad when MN started cutting his playing time. He was underperforming on special teams also.
A complete team includes locker room attitudes. A bad attitude is infectious.

Wings

November 15th, 2012
2:48 pm

Right on D3! History is on your side. Not much has changed in that situation since the 2010 Debacle in the Dome with GB.

Wings

November 15th, 2012
2:50 pm

The main reason the Falcons are better today is because of Matt Ryan and the receivers. It is certainly not the “non-running” game

D3

November 15th, 2012
3:16 pm

Arno — You’re right. I’m really not trying to hate on Turner, and I really do appreciate him being such a great Falcon, heck probably the best when it’s all said and done and Ring of Honor. It’s just that he’s being forced to play in a system that simply doesn’t fit him. He was at his best in a power-football type of offense with (arguably) the best blocking fullback in the game. If you’re willing to cut Ovie, which I agreed with, why are you not willing to cut Turner’s carries way, WAY down. I knew when we brought Turner back that we’d face this problem at some point. Sure enough……….

Arno

November 15th, 2012
3:29 pm

Thanks D3. After the Dallas game, I actually thought the CS had figured out a way to use him better. I must be delusional. BTW, the Cardinals couldn’t punch it in against GB third and two at the goal. Cards are also ticked about their own poor tackling.

Big Ray

November 15th, 2012
4:09 pm

I somehow suspect that whatever message that needed to be sent –

1) Got received by all applicable parties.

2) Was not meant for the understanding or interpretation of fans in any way, shape, or form.

3) Was run by Mr. Fiscal Responsibility (TD), thus approved.

And I think we’re overreacting. Although that is natural.

I am interested in seeing who gets snaps in place of Edwards, because I think there are plenty of games left (and snaps) where the Bier Truck can be used elsewhere to good/great effect.

As with all things…we shall see.

Big Ray

November 15th, 2012
4:10 pm

Wings ,

Per your 2:50 pm post….absolutely right.

Big Ray

November 15th, 2012
4:12 pm

Zoomie ,

I concur, would like to see Antone Smith used as well. I am perplexed as to why he never gets any burn. There must be a reason…but therein lies the puzzle. Is he one of those overlooked guys?

It would not surprise me if Smith is a guy who has missed enough blocking/pass protection assignments to get himself in the shadow of the doghouse. Thing is, that’s partly why Lousaka Polite got canked. Yet we keep hanging onto Smith. If the guy can play, let him play. Take a chance, take a shot. You can always sub him back out and put somebody else in, we have Rodgers and Snelling.

I don’t get it. But I’m also not sure why this is happening….or rather… not happening.

LRD

November 15th, 2012
4:48 pm

Edwards gone, water under the bridge. But it was a good wake up call for the team.

I am curious though if we come out and lay and egg against the Cards (no pun intended) if there are more “changes”/.

My biggest concern with Mgmt, is Julio and Spoon, not practicing again today… granted that on paper, we can probably get by without them against the Cards..do we rest both of them again a week to get ready for the NFC South Push against Tampa/sAINTS/Carolina?
I would prefer resting them, with limited participation in the game to get the rust off Spoon and to always present the Cards D the threat of Roddy/Julio.

Big Lou

November 15th, 2012
5:14 pm

Let’s get this straight. We need Julio for the Cards game. Spoon, I understand.

Their offense is horrid, but they have a great defense. If the Falcons don’t get the running game figured out, I don’t see them keeping Matt clean from the turf.

JB Falcon

November 15th, 2012
5:28 pm

The Falcons have until 11:30 a.m. on Sunday morning to declare their final active roster. (DOL)

And MS will probably wait until 11:29.

Paddy O

November 15th, 2012
6:43 pm

matty -regarding coach speak – read a transcript from Bill Parcells. He’ll tell you what is going on.

darrell starks

November 15th, 2012
6:47 pm

Cutting Edwards is not the problem on defense, he is a good run stopper but have been horrible against pass with no pass rushing pressure skills at all, the biggest problem is up the middle teams are hurting the Falcons running straight up the middle so there is a major issue at DT AND MLB.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Paddy O

November 15th, 2012
6:51 pm

BR – I’m hoping the Octopus or El Sid get some snaps. Sid impressed in pre-season, and the Octopus did last year. Plus, the octopus seemed pretty stout in the run – and, we were hammered pretty badly off tackle by ivory – DeCoud – after his interception flurry – has gone back to being kind of an iffy guy – his missed tackle on the 56 yard TD run was exceptionally embarassing.

darrell starks

November 15th, 2012
6:53 pm

Are the Falcons build for 3-4 defense ?

No you have no true NT on this team beside Travian Robertson who my opinion was the best DT during preseason, Falcons going into 3 -4 defense should have Travian starting in the game against Cardinals.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!

Paddy O

November 15th, 2012
6:53 pm

I saw Mike Pete get out of position on one decent run. One thing of interest – if the questionner asked about transitioning to 3-4, it does not appear that Mike Smith protested that impression. However, the Saints loss was directly on failed play calling on our 2nd the last possession in the 4th quarter – or, on Welcome Back. We were moving the ball very well when Turner was NOT running it.

darrell starks

November 15th, 2012
7:15 pm

Paddy O, The Falcons scored 27points on offense and defense gave up 31points.

Defense is the issue not offense.

GO FALCONS!!!!!!!!!!!

Unca' Bob

November 15th, 2012
7:24 pm

Paddy O

November 15th, 2012
6:53 pm

You can blame it on Yankee doodle dandy, DK, MT, or whomever you chose, but the fact remains MR2 threw two passes behind RW and TG that could have been caught if properly thrown. They were not. That in my minds eye lays on MR2. Then again TG dropped a fourth down conversion. We just don’t know, do we?…Just a thought.

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
7:28 pm

matty -regarding coach speak – read a transcript from Bill Parcells. He’ll tell you what is going on.

Different styles for different coaches. TD found a coach who did not the way he did it in New England, and times have changed since Parcells was da man, that was a long, long time ago…

Really, has it come down to that? We are worried about our coach speaking coach speak to the media? Really, usually when they open up is when they melt down and the end is near. But for the record, he did NOT say he was NOT sending a message, he was just getting into it.

And for the most part, Parcells did use tons of coach speak. He would say something and somebody would “does that mean”, and he would NO, IT MEANS (repeat verbatum). He was just a little more colorful than most, and wore his emotion on his sleever, but he did not divulge much either.

falcon21

November 15th, 2012
7:32 pm

Agree Darrell but if our o-line would have gotten any push at all we score 34+ and win. We have problems on both sides of the ball and I have no clue as of “what our main priorities are”. It is nice being 8 and 1 while we all discuss it though.

Paddy O

November 15th, 2012
7:42 pm

UB – the 2nd toss to RW84 is ON Ryan – but the Tony G pass was awful play design – Mike Johnson, our TD catching OTHER TE – was routed onto the same side of the field – his guy came off him and caused Ryan to adjust the flight of the ball. The other play was of course a nice Mike Turner 2 yard loss.

Paddy O

November 15th, 2012
7:44 pm

there goes matty moving the goal posts again. he never wants to be wrong. although, I think Belichec gives out more salient info in the pressers.

Paddy O

November 15th, 2012
7:45 pm

parcells answered direct questions. here, the AJC pro journalists ask profoundly dumb questions. which is why I get most good info from the Cage.

Paddy O

November 15th, 2012
7:46 pm

but, we all know our O line gets little push – EXCEPT on that QB sneak – unexpected? and we picked up the 1st down.

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
7:53 pm

Not sure where I “moved the goal post”. It is called coach speak because, well, that is what they do. Smitty is a coach. Not sure how we equate extrapolate that into a problem.

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
7:54 pm

QB sneak did not work in New York. As I said, I think we need to start airing it to JJ on 3rd and 1. We do that a few times, you will see teams play us differently.

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
7:57 pm

Parcells might have had a different style, and the Media could get him to admit things that he just did out of frustration. At least Smitty uses words, bcheck just mumbles and grunts.

But smitty did say “He would not get into it”, he did not deny anything. How can you not see that?

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
8:00 pm

It is nice being 8 and 1 while we all discuss it though….Bingo……Yes it is.

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
8:11 pm

But one thing we do agree on, is the AJC falcon beat coverage sucks. We are more likely to ask someone their favorite color than a real question.

JB Falcon

November 15th, 2012
8:11 pm

MB 7:54. I sorta get your idea on the 3rd and 1 scenerio but get stuck on the airing it out part. I think we attempted 3 passes on our most recent goal line failure. Maybe you meant 3rd and 1 that is not on the goal line?

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
8:19 pm

JB, yea, not on the goal line. And I don’t mean a 5 yard pass, I mean go vertical.

On the goal line, I would like to have seen a toss to Quizz to see if he can get outside, or and cut back if he finds a crack.

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
8:20 pm

3rd and 1, play action to the Burner, turn around and hit JJ going away. Even if it did not work, it would give teams something to think about.

Sportaree

November 15th, 2012
8:22 pm

After that deal in 2008 I don’t care what Parcells has to say but I’m glad things turned out the way it did.

Unca' Bob

November 15th, 2012
8:30 pm

Sportaree,

A huge amen to that!

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
8:44 pm

Yea, good point, Parcells, the guy who passed on MR2…LOL.

I am sitting here watching the Bills and Fins, it just is not easy as “try another guy”, do “something different”.

Sportaree

November 15th, 2012
8:46 pm

Thanks Unca’ Bob, I love a good amen!

DePlane

November 15th, 2012
8:50 pm

DePlane

November 15th, 2012
8:53 pm

Its good be 8-1. Yeah the Aint’s loss still stings, but at least we’re not 4-5 haha!

JB Falcon

November 15th, 2012
8:55 pm

MB, I’ve been giving that 1st and goal problem some thought and I sure wouldn’t want to be DK right now. Your Quizz idea is good and I liked the pass to “other” TE in the previous situation. TG’s td was just barely but they both worked. PO and others who watched more closely than me have identified MR as the culprit for the other pass attempts. I did see that TG was open when he attempted to pass to RW.
Schultz offered some relief in the fact that all teams have weaknesses and we are still 8-1, but,..our problem is so obvious.
The simplest solution is to not get yourself into 3rd and 1 goal line situations. Duh. Or, anytime we get into the red zone, try your idea. That would give JJ, RW, HD, and TG some room to work.

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
9:06 pm

Sometimes you just lose, you don’t make the play, the other guy does, chalk it up to competition. As long as you don’t make a habit of it.

But as I mentioned, the QB is what matters in the playoff. QBs make their bones there, and our 3 playoff losses are to QBs who have 7 SB appearances, and 4 rings. Coincidence?

Matty Bicep

November 15th, 2012
9:14 pm

Looking at SB odds, Falcons are the 4th best odds. Denver, Green Bay and Patriots are ahead….Hmmm, seems like the money agrees about my QB theory.

I don’t care what talking heads say, they are NOT OUR FRIENDS. The money seems to like the Falcons chances.

JB Falcon

November 15th, 2012
9:19 pm

Every QB who has a SB ring had to get their first one. Some of them lost a few playoff games before they even got to the SB.

falcon21

November 15th, 2012
9:25 pm

Matt Ryan did have a few bad throws Sunday but pressure caused it, the man was having to throw off of his back foot most of the game and that did affect the velocity on his throws which also affects his accuracy. As bad as this o-line is I think Matt is still completing around 68% of his throws, not too shabby.

Big Ray

November 15th, 2012
9:26 pm

You can blame it on Yankee doodle dandy, DK, MT, or whomever you chose, but the fact remains MR2 threw two passes behind RW and TG that could have been caught if properly thrown. They were not. That in my minds eye lays on MR2.

Ehh….debatable. I say that the pass to TG was overthrown. I say the pass to Roddy was misjudged by Roddy.

But who’s counting….

The Time is NOW

November 15th, 2012
9:29 pm

D3 (11:19) – good stuff.

The Time is NOW

November 15th, 2012
9:32 pm

Arno (11:45) – agreed.

Big Ray

November 15th, 2012
9:33 pm

The key to Ryan’s game is how quick and decisive he is. Between his own growth, his work in the gym, and his work with Dirk Koetter, Ryan has gotten exponentially better at this.

However, being quick and decisive with the ball comes at a price, and I think some folks either don’t recognize this price, or are ignoring it.

You know all those plays where Ryan goes to his first or second target (and sometimes the pass is not completed for whatever reason) and people scream about how he missed some other guy that is wide open? That’s one of the prices. No, I am not making excuses.

But when the protection is suspect, the ball needs to come out quick, etc….you have to be decisive …and sometimes that means knowing who your target is when you call the play.

Just a thought.

Not a fact.

The Time is NOW

November 15th, 2012
9:35 pm

Wings (12:26) – Yeah, but what did he say in the locker room?

The Time is NOW

November 15th, 2012
9:41 pm

Big Ray (4:09) – Spot on!

The Time is NOW

November 15th, 2012
9:43 pm

It’s gonna take too much time to catch up right now. Back when I have time to set a spell…

JB Falcon

November 15th, 2012
9:45 pm

Sometimes you just lose, you don’t make the play, the other guy does, chalk it up to competition. As long as you don’t make a habit of it.

Gotta’ agree with that!

Wings

November 16th, 2012
7:30 am

How the Falcons’ development program affects the players who are never given a chance to play. He is talking about Cliff Matthews, Jonathan Massaquoi and fourth-year defensive end Lawrence Sidbury.:

“They are all doing well,” defensive line coach Ray Hamilton said Thursday. “They have been practicing all year, but they haven’t been practicing on our side of the ball a whole lot because they’ve been doing mostly scout-team stuff.”“Their mindset has changed a little bit this week,” Hamilton said. “They know they have a chance to play, and they are doing well.”

Wings

November 16th, 2012
7:37 am

From the “Turner Keeps Grinding On” AJC article:

Turner admits that he’s adjusting to not being the featured player in the offense.

I never realized MT was the featured player in the offense. I know Mike Smith named him as “featured back” before the season began. Maybe it is in his contract and that is why he is still the starter.

Disconnect and arrogance.

Wabe

November 16th, 2012
8:06 am

“You can blame it on Yankee doodle dandy, DK, MT, or whomever you chose, but the fact remains MR2 threw two passes behind RW and TG that could have been caught if properly thrown. They were not. That in my minds eye lays on MR2.”

————–

The pass to TG in the endzone had to be underthrown [or behind him a bit] because there was a very tight window there. If you watch the play again, you’ll notice there’s a Saints defender playing one of our O-Linemen who broke into a flat route on the playaction to Turner, and a Saints defender was there with him playing that route. Had Ryan thrown the ball to Gonzo in stride or even hit him in the numbers, there’s a good chance that ball gets picked [and I mean a really good chance]. Go look at that play again.

I would put more blame on Ryan for his final pass to RW84. I know the pressure was in his face. But, throwing off your backfoot just points to poor mechanics on that given play. I know the Saints D-Line was coming, but I think Ryan had room to step up in the pocket. And also, at that point in the game, you have to be willing to take a hit and get the best throw off that you can. I know Ryan wants that one back. But, it happens. It’s part of the game. Ryan’s proven to be a guy that works on his game [have you seen his deep ball this season - ridiculously better than any other year he's been in the league]. So, I’m sure he’ll learn and improve on how to handle situational football a bit better.

Wabe

November 16th, 2012
8:07 am

blog monster

Wabe

November 16th, 2012
8:19 am

Was bored a couple days back, so went through and watched bits of the Dallas game I had stored on my DVR…

Noticed something early in the game [shouldn't come as a shocker to anybody]. But, just to add something to the on-going Falcons short-yardage run game debate. The Falcons had a drive early in the Cowboys game [2nd drive I believe] where Ryan connected on a vertical route to J.Jones. The following play, Roddy caught a crossing pattern for about 3 but turned it into 10 yards and another 1st down with some nifty footwork. We were inside the Cowboys 30. We pick up another 9 yards or so on the next 2 plays to put us in a 3rd and 1 inside the redzone. What happens?

Quizz takes the handoff on 3rd and 1 and is met immediately by Cowboys LB’s and they literally knock Quizz straight backwards on his rear end. I remember Collinsbum even mentioned how ‘great a play that was by the Dallas LB’ and said ‘I mean, that’s an NFL running back he just knocked straight back’.

The reason I bring this up is because although I knock on Turner, and I know McClure had some things to say earlier in the week, but honestly, I’m starting to lean towards this being an O-Line problem [probably a Todd McClure problem]. We’re running HB dives in a lot of these situations [runs straight into the teeth of that defense], and McClure’s not getting any push. I know I only referenced one play, but I can recall more times than one this season, where we’ve used all three backs [Turner, Quizz, and Snelling] in short yardage situations and they had no chance. I remember Snelling inside the opponents five one game and he couldn’t get it in.

Point being, I’m as guilty as anybody for blaming Turner, and he does deserve a lot of the criticism folks give him. But, regarding this particular issue [short yardage situations], I don’t think it has as much to do with the backs as it has to do with the blocking. When we’ve used all of our backs in attempts in short yardage situations this season, and they’ve all collectively failed at multiple points in the season, it speaks to the blocking. I would suggest would D.Starks mentioned about bringing in Lamar Holmes to add some beef, rotating Konz to the C spot, but that would just tip our hand, would it not? Unless you use that primarily for a goal-line stand type situation? Like if we got inside their 15 to 10 yardline, we shift our O-Line personnel in case we run into a ‘need one yard’ situation.

I don’t know, we’ll see what they do. Gotta be addressed though. As I pointed out, that 3rd and 1 in the Dallas game cost a shot at 7 points early in that game [and Bryant missed the FG so it cost us a shot at any points really]. Can’t keep allowing drives to stall for a freakin’ yard.

Wabe

November 16th, 2012
8:27 am

I’d also suggest some shifts at the line of scrimmage.

Come out on 3rd and short type situation and show one look, and shift into like an empty bunch type set. More times than not, if you show a heavy personnel type formation, and then shift into a shotgun empty type set – you could find holes in a zone to pick up a yard.

Or, you could even come out of some 4 WR sets to spread that defense out and then try running it with Turner/Quizz/Snelling.

Regardless, they have to get over this idea that we can push other lines back to pick up a yard, because going back to last season, it’s costs us points and ballgames. The track record isn’t in our favor. So, despite how many times Smitty or Koetter or whoever wants to reference how this O-Line needs to be able to pick up a yard, it ain’t gonna make it happen. Yeah, they do need to pick it up, but they haven’t. So now, the balls in your court. Are you gonna continue to insist on this ‘power running football’ knowing the success rate ain’t all that successful? Or are you gonna finally recognize this and adjust whenever you find yourselves in these situations. Pushing them back ain’t working anymore. Gotta get over the stubborness and go a different route.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
8:28 am

Wabe, I think it points to the play calling too. They are the same plays that are used again and again. In one article, it said the third and one on the goal line against NO was a tight formation with extra blockers instead of receivers. Go look at the first play of the NO game. It’s impossible to block all of the defensive players who clogged the middle and tackled MT for -3 yards. The overall problem is a coaching problem because they don’t recognize what has been run for so many times is not working no matter how many blockers are in the game.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
8:35 am

Wabe we said the same thing in a different way. If we can realize it, why not the coaching?

It appears Coach Mike Smith’s stubbornness is trying determine what happens given the old physics problem of what happens when an unstoppable object meets an unmovable object.

It has to be him doing this because he is the common thread from previous years to this year. If he doesn’t change, the coordinators that we all like will fail as the two before them.

Wabe

November 16th, 2012
8:54 am

Wings,

Agreed. Regarding the formation you mentioned about it being a tight set and having extra blockers in, well, we’re pretty much tipping our hand, and teams know what we’re gonna come out and do. I wouldn’t necessarily have a problem with this because there are a lot of coaches in the league that get away with the exact same thing Smitty/Koetter are trying to do and still be successful because they have lines that can get the push and still run it over you.

The problem here is really knowing your strengths and weaknesses. At this point, after all of the short yardage debacles we’ve witnessed dating back to last season, Smitty knows that this ‘you know we’re running it but we’ll still run over you’ mentality ain’t gonna work, because we don’t have the beef up front to make it work. I get where he’s coming from, that sometimes you have to be able to just win your battles up front and get the push to get a yard. But, knowing that it hasn’t worked all this time, will he and Koetter adjust? Because now, you have no justification for continuing down this road.

The coaches have to understand that the push isn’t happening, and so alternative methods have to be pursued. It’s as simple as that.

I will say though, that loss last week will actually help the Falcons tremendously moving forward. I firmly believe this. No loss is fun, and they all suck, especially one’s against the Saints. But IMO, losing, particularly in this manner, was needed. Because despite our 8-0 record, this was a serious concern that I don’t think any of us nor the coaches were paying enough attention to. They talked about the run game in general, which is an issue. But, these short yardage situations have really bit this team more times than once throughout the course of this season and going back to last season. I think the only way to correct it is to recognize there’s a problem [and after watching it finally cost us a ballgame - they better recognize it]. So now, we’ll see what they do to adjust [and I firmly believe they will].

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 16th, 2012
9:03 am

Interesting Wabe, I agree on most points…but, our probowl signal caller, IMO, should have the wherewithal to change the call (audible) at the line of scrimmage when the opposing defense has 8 in the box to counter our predictable 3rd and 1 run up the middle. I’ve noticed on some 1st and 2nd down passing plays, Ryan see’s the defense calling out an all out blitz, he audibles “Oklahoma”, 95% of the time, that means he’s gonna change from pass, to an obvious handoff, to whomever is in the backfield, now, I’m not an offensive coordinator, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express lastnight…if Ryan can change (auduble) from pass to run, seems he would have the same call (authority) to change the play on an obvious run up the middle on 3rd and 1, to short pass for 1st down yardage, moreover, change the play from a predictable up the middle run, to a toss sweep to Quizz, seems logical when the opposing defense has 8 in the box. Quizz, Snelling or ANTONE can out hustle the defense and get to the edge for a 1, 2 yard gain for the first down. Hell, maybe we catch them sleeping…could go for a TD. Just Saying…

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
9:10 am

“They are all doing well,” defensive line coach Ray Hamilton said Thursday. “They have been practicing all year, but they haven’t been practicing on our side of the ball a whole lot because they’ve been doing mostly scout-team stuff.”“Their mindset has changed a little bit this week,” Hamilton said. “They know they have a chance to play, and they are doing well.”

Seems like that non message was heard.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
9:17 am

Turner admits that he’s adjusting to not being the featured player in the offense.

He has averaged about 1400 per season, call it want you want, but he is used to getting the ball. But RE had a little struggle “adjusting” to his not being a feature DE he was paid to be, wonder if they are related.

I see change.

Big Ray

November 16th, 2012
9:22 am

http://blogs.ajc.com/atlanta-falcons-blog/2012/11/16/atlanta-falcons-look-for-matthews-massaquoi-to-pick-up-most-of-edwards-playing-time/?cxntfid=blogs_atlanta_falcons_blog

This is a decent read. It may even provide insight (to some degree, and it’s up to you anyway how you take it) to the release of Edwards. Or maybe not. But either way….

Note the comments on Cliff Matthews .

It’s interesting to hear what DL coach Ray Hamilton has to say about him, though there’s nothing that’s a “revelation.” Seems like Matthews is the front runner to get some PT.

“Cliff is a big, strong and physical guy that we’ve always liked,” Hamilton said. “We think that he’s come along enough to get in there and get a few snaps.”

The Falcons have pulled Matthews off some of the special teams in order for him to better focus on playing from scrimmage.

“He looks like the real deal,” Hamilton said. “He’s a guy that we’ve brought along slowly.”

The door clearly is open for Matthews, who played at South Carolina and was a second-team all-SEC pick in 2010.

“We need a big physical guy, so Cliff could be the one who mostly benefits by what has happened,” Hamilton said.

Of course, this does not do much to explain the “sudden” release of Edwards, meaning that it probably has as much to do with his attitude as anything else. But there could be a silver lining in this cloud. Might the Falcons have taken a step forward in their player development program?

Massaquoi is described as “raw”, so I’m guessing he won’t see but a snap or two here and there…if at all. Anytime you hear the word “raw” that means somebody is not ready to play….especially in Smitty’s system.

Hamilton is high on Massaquoi.

“Massaquoi is a guy that’s got a lot of physical ability, a lot of good football instincts,” Hamilton said. “He’s just a raw kid right now. Hopefully, he’s learned enough to get in there. We’ll see what he can do.”

Like I said….

Meanwhile, what’s happened to Sidbury? Very few comments are made on him, nearly all is focused on Massaquoi and Matthews. Why? Is that just the way DOL approached the situation and wrote the article…or is this how things are really turning out?

We may begin to find out against Arizona…

D3

November 16th, 2012
9:23 am

The reason I bring this up is because although I knock on Turner, and I know McClure had some things to say earlier in the week, but honestly, I’m starting to lean towards this being an O-Line problem [probably a Todd McClure problem].Wabe

Whole-heartedly and 100% agree! Not tooting my own horn because MANY to most of us called this back in the off-season (like February). McClure, like Turner, was once great, but Father Time has simply caught up with him. He is 6′1, 296 sopping wet and 35 years old (actually turns 36 in February). This is the main frustration I have with Smitty. It’s as almost as if he was penciled in as starting OC as soon as he re-signed, even though Peter Konz was hands down the best center in the draft. Big, burley, and even though some knocks would surely come, he’s our future at center. Hell, I’d even take Konz @ RG and Hawley at OC. At least Hawley’s a touch bigger and younger. Once again, I’m not going to say that Smittyball is in play with the entire team, but it absolutely, positively is with the offensive line and the running back situation. No two ways around it. Wow, that “open competition” on the OL yielded exactly what us skeptics thought it would…………….THE EXACT SAME OFFENSIVE LINE AS 2011.

Big Ray

November 16th, 2012
9:30 am

Wabe ,

No doubt whatsoever in my mind that the OL is a problem in the run game. Hell, they’re a problem at times in the passing game.

They aren’t the ONLY problem in the run game, I think is what most folks are saying. The issue with Turner is that he’s a one-trick pony and right now he can’t even do his one trick.

The bigger issue is that the OL blocking isn’t going to suddenly “get better”. Not with lame-ass Clabo and old-ass Mud Duck.

I think the solution is two-fold.

1) Let Ryan call more plays (no huddle or whatever) because when he calls the runs, we seem to do better with them. Why? Defense doesn’t know as often what Ryan’s going to do.

2) Use the more fleet-footed RBs more, specifically in the first half as we are trying to score quickly and often.

Big Ray

November 16th, 2012
9:31 am

D3 , you’re right. Competition, my arse….

D3

November 16th, 2012
9:36 am

MB — I agree that “some” change is coming. But we’re talking about a glacial, new-mountains forming-at-a-1/2-inch-per-year-kind-of-pace. See below

2011 Total Carries

Michael Turner — 301/404 — 75%

Jacquizz Rodgers — 57/404 — 14%

Jason Snelling — 44/404 — 11%

Ovie Mughelli — 2/404 — 0%

I posted those numbers through 9 games (Turner – 73%) and we’re talking about a 2% drop. Stop the press! :eek:

Lord, what I would give to see a speedy back PERMANENTLY in this offense.

D3

November 16th, 2012
9:41 am

Cliff Matthews, a special-teams standout, figures to benefit the most from Edwards’ release, followed by rookie Jonathan Massaquoi and fourth-year defensive end Lawrence Sidbury.

Wow, talked about either untapped or unfulfilled potential. Mr. Sidbury looks to be gone as gray. You’re telling me that Sidbury is below both Cliff Matt and Mass? Talk about being dead @ss wrong. I thought El Sid may be a secret weapon for Nolan in the form of what he did with Elvis Dumervil in Denver and Cameron Wake in Miam. Don’t ever take my @ss to Vegas.

Geo

November 16th, 2012
9:48 am

D3, that may be poor word choice (or word order) by DOL. When he says Cliff Mathews may benefit the most, he may be alluding to the fact that Mathews will go from no playing time to some snaps, which would be a bigger change than a few additional snaps for a player already being used. Just a thought.

D3

November 16th, 2012
9:53 am

Geo — You could be right, but the reason I say that is Sidbury has been a ghost too. I think I remember seeing him one or two times at DE the entire year.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
9:57 am

What is the single most important issue for falcons. The NUMERO UNO thing we need on order to have any chance in hell of being successful in the post season?

A healthy Ryan.

When you start tinkering around O line, especially the center position, you put the QB at risk of being injured. Sure Ryan has been hit a few times, but for the most part, they have held up pretty good in pass protection. And even when does get sacked, he get pulled down, I have not seen him take a single big hit where I went, OH ****.

Actually, there was 1 play that scared me last year, you know, when we had a NEW LT in and he stepped on Ice’s ankle. The NEW guy who was not used to playing with everyone else.

My point, when you switch out O line players, unpredictable things happen, you let a rookie center miss a look and have someone come strait up the gut, or a LT make a bad read and send an OLB untouched to MR2’s blind side and see where our season goes. It takes on play. ONE.

O line change needs to be at a glaciers pace when you have a QB like Ryan and you are 8-1. Hell, we could go finish the season 0-7, and have every loss traced back to our inability to gain a yard and have a better chance in the playffs with Ryan than finish 7-0 and have Ryan get hurt in our last game and miss the playoffs.

Again, we are 8-1, we have a LOT to lose by making moves out of frustration, or ill conceived desperation. Got to keep things in perspective.

Chop Buster

November 16th, 2012
10:04 am

Hey folks, been reading some of the comments and there’s some good stuff here. Wabe made some excellent points about the OL being a problem and I believe some of us have been saying this since last year. The weakest part of the OL is right up the middle and the better defenses have discovered they can blow McClure on his heels. Another thing I noticed about the OL is they are some of the weakest guys in the league (except the youngster Konz). Smitty needs to make it mandatory that all OL must be able to bench at least 25 reps of 400lbs, because we make NO’s DL look like the steel curtain. The other thing that concerned me watching the game was the inability to get a TD after four straight tries. Now we know that giving the ball to Turner down there is a complete waste of time. We have too much talent not to be able to pick up one yard. Shoot Julio or Jacquizz can carry someone for a yard. Play calling HAS to get better in goal line situations. Also, I said something earlier this year that I think the Falcons should do. If you ever notice Green Bay and the 49ers of old (Rice) would score from the 30 yard out. Someone pointed to the fact that we can move the ball on teams until we get within the redzone. Koetter needs to start calling quick screens or slants to Roddy, Julio or Quizz and let them pickup the TD with YAC. Also, no one mentioned that HD should have gotten the TD on his play. Problem he is just too small and light in the butt to be playing slot. We need to keep Drew Davis on the field with Roddy, Julio and Gonzalez. Just seomething I think would benefit us more since HD seems to be shaky with the ball in his hands any way.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 16th, 2012
10:05 am

IMHO, running the ball up the middle on short yardadge situations when the defense sells out, puts 8~9 in the box, we still try to run it? borderlines idiocy, rather than ineptness.

I’m sure at some point or another everyone here in the cage has come across road (highway) contruction, more often than not, the throughways are blocked, know possible way for people to get through, so, there are little things called DETOURS, you know, where we have to go AROUND the blockade to get to our destinations. If Smith and his offensive braintrust could apply some of these everyday, real life situations, we’d be a better Team…and thats scary (in a good way) to think we could be much better than we are already.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
10:06 am

Big Ray – ” Anytime you hear the word “raw” that means somebody is not ready to play….especially in Smitty’s system.”

I’ll add to your translation. Raw means, “He has not learned to do it my way and no other way is to be considered”.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
10:21 am

Chop Buster I have noticed:

When the offense gets inside the 30 yard line, it appears the coaching staff wants to gradually get into the end zone by using as many plays as possible. It should be score ASAP by the best way possible.

There is always at least one first down Turner run with the stacked defense when the ball arrives inside the 30 and 20.

I get so aggravated and mad because they don’t go ahead and try to score. It’s as if there is a set of plays that must be executed that validates scoring a touchdown. I think it is Smitty’s way, and he is holding the offense back.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
10:23 am

MB you will recognize “CHANGE” when you see Turner is not the starting running back.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
10:23 am

well. as coop said, I’m a realist – I recognize that our O line does not get a lot of push between the tackles – this year though – with Reynolds improving and now out, we have had decent pass protection – getting beaten primarily to the outside via Clabo – so, keep playing to your strengths. personally, If you have a 3 receiver set with 1RB it is easier to audible into a run as opposed to having a TE, maybe 2, and no wideouts in an obvious Falcon Mike Turner run on short yardage formation, and then audible from the run to pass. Now, if you had Snelling AND Quizz or even quizz/snelling AND Turner, then a pass audible is possible – but that scenario is a lot tougher to execute.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
10:26 am

Turner’s big problem is loss or lack of lateral agility. He just does NOT have that – Quizz has it. We can’t run straight up between the tackles. Turners most effective runs are off tackle – just like Quizz’. Quizz is dangerous cause you can’t commit to a run play or pass play – he is effective in either. evenw with our terrific all pro weapons, you can still be stopped by telescoping your intentions. I prefer constant deception, and to be an “unanticipatable” offense by the defense. We have not run no-huddle much this year.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
10:28 am

YOu can argue what you want regarding smitty pressers – he give worthless info for the most part – the Falcon KGB. Of course, the lobotomized parrots who work for the AJC don’t ask very useful questions.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
10:29 am

wings – raw is a spotlight for the Falcon Apprenticeship Program.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 16th, 2012
10:33 am

Sometimes the word speak coming out of Flowery Branch is amazing. Massaquois’s skill set is “RAW”, or should I say, he’s not that refined…he’s having trouble sticking out his pinky when he’s having his noon Tea… thats some funny sh!t.

Forget “RAW”, pundits, talking heads, prognosticators, coaches said the same thing about JPP, he only went out and got 14~15 sacks last year. THE ONLY WAY YOUNG DE’s PROVE THEIR WORTH IS ON THE FIELD OF PLAY, NOT ON PAPER, or ON THE SCOUT TEAM!!! IMHO

Big Lou

November 16th, 2012
10:47 am

Massaquoi

He can be the Falcon’s Jason Pierrre-Paul. I’m hoping, anyways.

Nookah

November 16th, 2012
10:47 am

Greetings Cagers!!

I have been”away” but I have been absorbing the knowledge. Great points from so many. Keep it going guys. For any aredent Falcon fan this is the place to be.

Paddy O – “We have not run no-huddle much this year”. I was thinking that recently but what do you think the reason for that is, becasue I thought it was very effective last year Perhaps we will resume it during the playoffs. I guess we don’t want to be too predictable come playoff time?

Go Falcons!!

Nookah

November 16th, 2012
10:50 am

I am looking forward to the “new” guys playing DE. As someone commented earlier, anything out there must be more productive than RE.

Big Lou

November 16th, 2012
10:52 am

I’m telling you. Shot gun run plays with Snelling/Quizz will help our offensive line’s weaknesses. I have seen major gains from delayed handoffs, especially with this pass heavy offense.

Geo

November 16th, 2012
10:54 am

We ran the no-huddle to get the offense out of its plodding predictability and to pick up the pace. With our new OC, we’ve been able to do those things for the most part without it. We do still use it, just not as often and more strategically, rather than out of desperation.

D3

November 16th, 2012
10:55 am

When you start tinkering around O line, especially the center position, you put the QB at risk of being injured.MB

C’mon man, this can’t be your answer every time we suggest a change to the OL. In case you haven’t noticed, our current OL isn’t too d@mn good. And even if I do agree on your point, that’s the coaches d@mn fault because they had since April to try some different things. Did they? H– No!

Nookah

November 16th, 2012
10:58 am

So the focus on the draft this year, RB, DE, OL and not necessarily in that order?

Arno

November 16th, 2012
11:02 am

From DOL: RIGHT GUARD PETER KONZ ON THE REDZONE OFFENSE:“You read into (the numbers) that you need to improve, it’s plain and simple. I don’t think you have to over complicate things. You just have to get a better push up front. I think as a team, we just have a lot more focus in that particular area since we know were are struggling with it. We’ll do that in practice and we’ll fix it.”

Big Lou

November 16th, 2012
11:04 am

D3

I understand your point. They should have tinkered the offensive line against the weak azz Saints. Yet, doing it this week against the stout defensive talent of Arizona… could be a season ending sentence for Matt Ryan. Really, the Falcons don’t have the ability to change any Oline for the rest of the year. The schedule is filled with great dlines.

D3

November 16th, 2012
11:14 am

BL — You make a good point. But that pisses me off even more than because the coaches knowing once your OL is set there are no more to be made. I would like to start and see Holmes getting worked in near the goalline. That big boy will get a push somehow or some way. In that case, at a minimum, they sure as hell should be changing the play-calling and rolling with our strengths, opening up the defense in a spread type format and either throw to your best weapons or give the ball to Quizz or Snelling. All that being said though, I don’t really buy the fear thing. Konz has actually worked out BETTER than Reynolds did. The coaches had 5-6 months to change some things and they did nary a thing.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
11:15 am

D3, it is my point every time because it is the correct point. Sure, we could have stuck Konz in the middle, but a rookie center is risky enough. When I saw Konz in his first game at guard 7 games into the season, he was inconsistent. Some plays he looked lost. No way he was ready to be an NFL center. Hawley seems to be a bust.

Look, again, we are 8-1, how much better should we be? 9-0, ok, I am with ya. But a hurt MR2 is the ONLY thing that is not fixable, and I just think it would take precedence over all other issues.

Finally, it is our inability to get short yardage playing smash mouth football is where we have a problem. It is not THAT critical an issue, otherwise, no way we are where we are.

I think we can run some offensive plays, like throwing a bomb on 3rd and 1, or toss sweeps to quizz, etc that can alleviate this problem by making teams have to read us. But really, we don’t need to even show our hand of what we plan to do to fix this problem, we are in the drivers seat.

It just takes 1 play for this season to go down the drain.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
11:18 am

Big Lou – “I’m telling you. Shot gun run plays with Snelling/Quizz will help our offensive line’s weaknesses. I have seen major gains from delayed handoffs, especially with this pass heavy offense.”

You are 100% correct. I remember you have said this before. It’s a shame the Falcons can’t implement any good suggestions. They stick with the same o.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
11:21 am

I would also guess Ryan has some input as to who plays on the line. It is his @zz that need protecting. As “bad” as our line was last year, ryan was only sacked 26 times. Again, the only time he looked like he might get hurt was when the NEW LT stepped on his ankle.

Here is the thing, changes bring unexpected surprises. Smitty does not like unexpected things, he wants a plan for EVERYTHING. That is why we win 70% of our games. That same trait is what makes him slow to change when it is obvious change is needed. It is Smittys style, it is who he is, you just have to take the good with the bad, it is all part of the package.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
11:25 am

I am curious about Sid too. I do believe Nolan has autonomy on the D. He’s not gonna take any crap, so I am guessing that el Sid and Nolan are’nt clicking.

Also, I think he moth balled his amoeba D as to not put too much on tape, and save it for when we really need it.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
11:25 am

MB, Matt Ryan could have a car wreck too and get hurt.

Other teams make changes to improve and there is not one reason that the Falcons can’t. Your reason holds no water. Are you paid by the team to TAP down criticism?

It took two d@mn years for Smitty to realize he needed to get rid of Mularkey and then he was probably pushed by AB and TD.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
11:27 am

MB – “Here is the thing, changes bring unexpected surprises. Smitty does not like unexpected things, he wants a plan for EVERYTHING. That is why we win 70% of our games”.

This is his weakness too and the reason we have won no playoff games.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
11:27 am

Anyway D, I just agree to disagree, love your passion, and appreciate you running this blog. It is a great place.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
11:33 am

MB, Mike Smith is a defensive minded head coach. The defense against NO looked more like the Smitty defense from past years than any I have ever seen from Nolan. You forget Smitty is the head coach and he walks the sideline on Sundays. You could say by observation that Smitty has finally got Nolan doing the defense the way he wants it done.

Smitty has effectively neutralized the creativity of both coordinators if you consider the Turner/OL issue and the inability of the defense to stop NO.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
11:37 am

This is his weakness too and the reason we have won no playoff games.

I don’t worry about the playoff games, and we can’t do a dam thing about them now. But I think playoff games is QB time, and Ryan has not performed on that stage. But he has also gone against guys who have 4 rings, and 7 SB appearances.

Again, the entire playoff thing started with the MV7 crowd, than the MR2 crowd got defensive and blamed Smitty.

But really, I could give a crap Winning a playoff game is not the goal. Been there, done that, only to go 5 more years with out sniffing them again.

But something gives me a real good feeling about guys who get humiliated and keep coming back more and more determined. Guys who never go away, how refuse to quit.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
11:40 am

Wings, I think Nolan is much too strong a personality for Smitty to control. I think Nolan is not wanting to show too much.

And once we got control of the NO game, we effective shut them down.

But one question I have for the entire cage. Does anyone know if RE was playing in the 2nd quarter when NO went on the 3 TD run? Hmmm.

D3

November 16th, 2012
11:43 am

D3, it is my point every time because it is the correct point. MB

As respectfully as possible, correction, that is your opinion. Not the definitive correct answer.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 16th, 2012
11:45 am

Hey, I agree with you somewhat on the change thing MB. We all have citicized Smitty at some point and time , for the “same ole, same ole” I criticize him more for not using alternatives, which is different than change, weighing options, choices to bring about better outcomes (eg. 3rd and short situations)

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
11:46 am

I think Ryan is like little brother to Warner, and to a lesser extent, Eli, and Rogers. Ryan was a growing pup, he showed promise, but he did not have the strength to keep up with big bro. So, he got determined, got in the weight room, and worked hard every day when nobody was watching. Now, all the criticism of arm strength and deep ball is gone. I like the Falcons chances in the playoffs because he is ready to take the step.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
11:48 am

D3, respectfully Noted.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
11:48 am

MB – “Again, the entire playoff thing started with the MV7 crowd, than the MR2 crowd got defensive and blamed Smitty. ”

This is a big cop-out. I am perfectly able to observe things as are others, and I have not had one thought of the Michael Vick crowd as the starter of that.

It’s only your opinion!

D3

November 16th, 2012
11:51 am

MB — Fair enough. And I agree with you up to a point. But if nothing else, that’s a massive failure on the coaching staff that prides itself on “cross-training their OL” to never and try and mix it up. Every single option should have been on the table after the 2011 OL almost got Matt killed.

MB / Wings — I refuse to believe that they “holding” anything back. My motto during this off-season was “Stop Talking About It, and PROVE IT!” They have proven it so far and I know that losses are just a part of sports, especially the NFL. But I can’t buy that “holding stuff back” meme anymore. Just can’t.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
11:52 am

And I agree that I would like to see Smitty try alternatives too, I am a fan and want to see what the guys can do. I want to see Antone Smith, and see if the big LT can get push.

But, I think Smitty’s personality is what it is and has more positives than negatives, nor do I think the negatives are cancerous. We just keep coming back, but in the end, it is Ryan who is special and going to have to make the plays to win a trophy,

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
11:53 am

It’s only your opinion!

-Correct.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
11:59 am

But D3, can you figure out if RE was on the field when the Saints went off on us in the 2nd quarter? If so, I would be interested to see what his effort level was. Could that have been the last straw?

Because for all our consternation, when we were down 28-17 and Brees was cooking, I though “here we go”. But our D bowed up and gave us a chance to win. I just really wonder what plays RE was in on.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
12:06 pm

D3 I don’t think they are holding anything back. My words were not saying what I meant to say. I tried to say the coaches trying to control everything prevents the offense from playing to its ability. I have never thought the Falcons coaching staff holds back so the other teams will not see the playbook. They are not that smart.

D3

November 16th, 2012
12:07 pm

Wings — Nah, I was talking about MB.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 16th, 2012
12:07 pm

I agree D3, “Holding back stuff”?!?! We’ve allowed defenses to biatch slap us on 3rd and short situations, we can’t apply pressure on opposing QB’s…but we’ve got’em right where we want’em…they’re playing right into our hands.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
12:10 pm

Thanks D3 and keep up the great work for us.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
12:11 pm

wings – I think Nolan, not being very familiar with Brees & the saints – deferred to Smitty in the 1st half. Once we got eaten alive, he switched to his adjustments. If Saints are running the ball, any defense is in trouble. I still have SERIOUS problems having William Moore cover JImmy GResham single coverage – very, very dumb. NOtice Asante appeared to shut down Colston?

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
12:12 pm

I am not a guy who would think we “hold back” either to be honest. But why stop the Amoeba D? Smitty went to Nolan and told him to go back to MVG swiss cheese? OK, I will buy that, but what I don’t buy is Nolan agreeing to do so.

Hell, I think Nolan would quit.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
12:14 pm

I’ve thought that predominantly, when Turner is on the bench, with Quizz in there, our offense has been explosive, deceptive and generally undefensible – so, the no huddle has not really been utilized. I think we used it some on the come back against the SKins. But, when JJ is not out there, it alters the defenses focus and we become 1 dimensionalish. JJ, with a year under his belt, is KEY to us being unbeatable.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
12:15 pm

matty – I think you are probably right on the amoeba D – keep it for special occasions.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
12:15 pm

Nolan showed looks in the 2nd half of the chiefs game, and all Denver that we have not seen since. Anyone got a theory?

And if you put it on Smitty, please explain how Nolan would agree? Nolan ain’t Smitty’s B@@@@, he has a reputation to uphold.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
12:18 pm

The amoeba D is beatable in a big way, it is the 46 D of the old Bears. The ryan brothers use it some, but it is a reason it is all but extinct.

We ate Manning alive because he did not expect it, feasts on the element of surprise and confusion.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
12:19 pm

I also have noticed that Quizz is always in there for our 2 minute offense.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 16th, 2012
12:23 pm

…And another thing. Developing talent (defensive ends) has taken on a new meaning with our franchise, if I can quote SW, it’s more like “witness protection”. IMO, you can’t teach pass rush, can skills be honed? yes…but, the one attribute of all pass rushers is athleticism (speed) can they bend the corner (edge)?

Know real intelligence needed for DE’s to rush the passer. Coach only needs to tell them, see quarterback Brutus…get quarterback Brutus.

D3

November 16th, 2012
12:23 pm

Paddy — Your post a second ago just reminded me of a great item I wanted to discuss. As much as I hate Breesbag and sAINTS, I respect the hell out of their offensive philosophy. I’ve always been impressed with their ability to use almost every single offensive weapon, especially compared to us. They have Jimmy Graham, Devery Henderson, Lance Moore (our kryptonite evidently), Marques Colston, Chris Ivory, Mark Ingram, Pierre Thomas, and Darren Sproles. It’s so impressive how they find ways to get ALL their offensive playmakers involved on such a regular basis. And that’s all without Sean Payton calling the plays. Compare that to us (even though Koetter is way better than Malarkey) and it’s not even close. They use upwards of 4-5 running backs, while we essentially use 1 (Turner – 73%). They use a minimum of 4 WR’s and we can barely EVER seem to get HD, Drew Davis, or (Lord forbid) a speedster like Kevin Cone involved. Asante shut down Colston, we took out Devery Henderson, and limited Mark Ingram. And they say, “OK, we’ll just go to Chris Ivory, Jimmy Graham, and Lance Moore.” Frustrating.

D3

November 16th, 2012
12:41 pm

On a lighter note, the loss sure wasn’t good for our Falcons, but it’s been a boon for The Cage….. :grin:

Big Lou

November 16th, 2012
12:43 pm

D3

I agree completely. Hopefully they can make adjustments to the line when we face the Saints again here.

I really think they should just change the way they run, tbh.

Wings

Yeah, thanks man. I wish they would at least give it a shot. Power run formation takes a potential receiver out of the backfield, where the shotgun/run formation can be used to bring the LB up for a fake give off/dump the ball in middle, delayed handoff the allow the Dline to get up the field which allows lanes to form for the RB, and even give us a check-down option if nobody is open up top. The Saints use this well with Sproles.

Big Lou

November 16th, 2012
12:45 pm

D3

This blog is always buzzing more during a loss….

I wonder why? ;)

Wings

November 16th, 2012
12:46 pm

Paddy O I said something similar earlier this week about the first half and second half. Nolan gained control in the second half. I am sure its more difficult that way because the team practiced the first half method. Bad match up with Moore and Gresham.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
12:50 pm

I will also say this, if Quizz gets a lot more carries, the Cage is going to erupt when he stops running short of a first down to juke a guy chasing him and get tackled short.

Or when he turns around and runs backwards in a cutback attempt, and ends up losing 10 years.

His running style is not sound for an every down back, he does not have the speed of Barry Sanders, so he needs to know when to go forward and just take 3 the yards, than to stop, or even worse, go backwards. You can get away with it in lower levels or with limited touches, but if you get coordinators scheming, they will exploit this tendency.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
12:52 pm

Wings, I thought NO was going up 35-17 and it was gonna be ugly, but we showed something.

DePlane

November 16th, 2012
12:53 pm

I’m looking forward to seeing Matthews and Massaquoi. Mass is a beast!

Wings

November 16th, 2012
12:54 pm

D3 the cage members have a lot of experience on taking apart the causes of the NO kind of loss. I went back and reread last December’s NO loss blog, and words by all of us were basically the same. It is a shame the coaching staff can’t give us some change so we can have different subjects.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
12:56 pm

MB I really like Nolan and he did show something with the players.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
12:56 pm

somebody else stated that if Quizz was in there every down, he probably would not be as effective – which I agree with – when Turner is in, defenses know he’ll run 1 of maybe 5 plays – pretty easy to defend – especially if we pull our receivers in close – Turner does NOT make people miss at this point; and, he is bad at catching the ball – very bad, actually. Which is why I’d like – still – to see Snelling and Quizz in the back field – allows a lot of options/flexibility.

Wings

November 16th, 2012
12:57 pm

This blog is already 15 pages.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
12:58 pm

i think most in the cage would have preferred losing to the Skins or Dallas, and whooping NO and Philly. I think many are really waiting for the offense – even under Welcome Back, to evolve just a little more – I guess you could say we await the Post – Stay Puffed Man Era.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
12:59 pm

I really hate both Philly and NO. Not so much TB nor Carolina – but, if Cam Newton pulls his head out of his butt, ends the turnovers, they instantly become competitive. but, that is a nice size IF.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
12:59 pm

everybody is getting along better today. just gotta role with your nutty cousins at family gatherings!

Wings

November 16th, 2012
1:12 pm

We are all nutty cousins sometimes. Peace is better.

JB Falcon

November 16th, 2012
1:23 pm

just gotta role with your nutty cousins at family gatherings! -PO

You have to admire D3’s ability to keep this blog running within the realms of civility. Sometimes I read something and bite my tongue rather than interject what I feel like saying. It all smoothes over if we just roll with the flow.

Nookah

November 16th, 2012
1:24 pm

D3 (12:23pm) – Could that be more becasue of coaching and Smitty ball? I think Smitty plays the percentages a lot and to a certain extent I think it limits his innovativeness. That’s the big difference between him and say Sean Payton. Payton knows th percentages too but is bold and will do the unexpected at the most critical time. Smitty will not!

Nookah

November 16th, 2012
1:26 pm

Perhaps that’s why he continues to run Turner up the middle for 3rd & short. Don’t tell me that DK as that playcall has been here before DK was.

D3

November 16th, 2012
1:37 pm

JB / Wings / Paddy — Funny stuff. Could it be because the weekend’s close, could it be because the Holiday season is upon us, or could it be because we got our loss out of our system? :grin: In all seriousness, that’s one of the core features that I took when starting this blog. We all started back on DOL’s blog, and some on Wyche’s even before that, but we all tried to be civil, ignore the trolls, and just have a good debate without all the infantile mudslinging. We all thought: I wonder what it would be like to have a blog that’s all about Falcons, Football, and Family without all the garbage you have to put up with elsewhere. I think it’s turned out pretty well. I mean, for goodness sake, for those that enjoy that garbage, there are literally hundreds of blogs you frequent.

D3

November 16th, 2012
1:41 pm

Nookah — Great points. Great to see you also by the way. How’s things up north? Been missing your “Good Vibrations” here in the Cage. This is where SP our resident offensive technician could come into play. I would like to see what kind of run plays that MJD was given in Jax under Koetter, who somehow found a way to utilize him despite a terrible QB in a trainwreck of a season. I know the default is to always go back and blame it on Smitty Ball, but if it looks like duck, walks like a duck, and sounds like a duck……..it’s a M____’ng duck! :lol:

Big Ray

November 16th, 2012
1:43 pm

It seems Mike Smith does understand a thing or two about scoring:

“(The numbers) are not as good as we need to be. Our red zone efficiency and touchdown efficiency is not what we need to be. We talked about it last week on Wednesday about the team we were facing was number one, and we had to go out and match that because they were going to do a good job. They’ve done a good job. We’ve got to improve. We can’t work and get those empty yards, get down in the red zone and not come away with touchdowns. We want to finish every drive. Our goal is to finish every drive with it ending not in a field goal, but ending with an extra point.”

Mud Duck may get kudos for pointing out that there is more to the running game than just the five guys up front…. but I like rookie Peter Konz’s attitude

RIGHT GUARD PETER KONZ ON THE REDZONE OFFENSE: “You read into (the numbers) that you need to improve, it’s plain and simple. I don’t think you have to over complicate things. You just have to get a better push up front. I think as a team, we just have a lot more focus in that particular area since we know were are struggling with it. We’ll do that in practice and we’ll fix it.”

I have no issues with this young man as our starting Center next season, or as our starting RG. But for the love of Pete, just make sure he starts.

Chop Buster

November 16th, 2012
1:55 pm

Wings (10:21), it’s just like Somebody (10:05) said, we still try to run it knowing that it’s not going anywhere. That is idiocy plain and simple. We need to score from where ever we are on the field and if the running game is not working in the red zone/goal line then score before you get in that position. Let’s keep attacking teams guys and not put ourselves in these difficult positions with Turner.

Big Ray

November 16th, 2012
1:55 pm

I seem to recall this play against the Cowboys a couple weeks ago wherein a defender had a free run against the offense. Never was blocked. Nailed Ryan from behind so hard it looked like whiplash from a car wreck.

That hit came from the left side. The blind side. There are no rookies on that side. Just sayin’…

Now the easy way out would be to say that Ryan didn’t get his protection right on that play. Hmmmm. Well the OC says that against NO they didn’t block the schemes correctly.

Either way you see it, a rookie player at any position has its risks and rewards.

Chop Buster

November 16th, 2012
2:02 pm

Wings (11:33), I completely agree and said the same thing myself. That defense looked NO different that it had playing the Aints in previous years. It’s just speculation on my part, but that d@mn Smitty is scared to death of Brees and goes into that BBDB defense anytime he plays him in fear of getting burned deep. Well guess what, Jimmy and Lance ran all through your zone D until adjustments were made in the second half. Why didn’t we come out playing that way to begin with in the first half.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
2:06 pm

I have no issues with this young man as our starting Center next season, or as our starting RG. But for the love of Pete, just make sure he starts.

And I agree with him, it is not rocket science. Maybe it is as simple as New Orleans figuring out Ryans cadence. But, yea, I am looking forward to the post burner days too.

In regards to Nolan, I do think he got conservative because he can. I am not thinking he “holds back” per se, he expects what he calls to work, but I know he has a number of tricks up his sleeve we ain’t seen.

I also know he will not allow Smitty to force him into doing things he does not believe in, he has a reputation to uphold. I mean, the big 3 tackle was not exactly a vanilla scheme. That is why I wonder about El Sid having some sort of work ethic problem that put him in Nolan’s crapper.

Finally, the Turner admission that he has been “slow” to accept his role as “feature back” says the RE message was heard loud and clear.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
2:10 pm

Either way you see it, a rookie player at any position has its risks and rewards.

Agreed, but some risks are bigger than others. Again, like D3, I want to see what the new LT can do. He is a beast. But we are risking our season, not that it can’t happen anyway, but it seems to work. Again, I suspect if Ryan said, give me to rookie, he might get it, you saw what happened to that FB.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
2:11 pm

Blog Monster

JB Falcon

November 16th, 2012
2:14 pm

D3, you were seeking some clarity on the actual cost of releaseing RE the other day. I found the following on P Yas so to save you from digging it out:

Although he already has been released, defensive end Ray Edwards still will cost the Atlanta Falcons $4.65 million against the 2013 salary cap.

The Falcons are off the hook for the $5.5 million in base salary that Edwards was scheduled to earn next year. But the $4.65 million figure represents the outstanding portions of his pro-rated signing bonus and option bonus and all of that will be accelerated toward the 2013 cap. Edwards had been scheduled to count $7.05 million toward next year’s cap prior to his release.

Edwards still will count $3.315 million toward this year’s cap. But that number is down from the $4.55 million he would have cost if he spent the whole season with the Falcons.

All totaled, Edwards received $10,764,705.88 from the Falcons for playing in 25 games and producing 3.5 sacks.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
2:20 pm

Edwards was a mistake, but if the message focuses this team gets us to the SB….

Then he was worth every cent.

Big Ray

November 16th, 2012
2:30 pm

To me, there is a greater importance on fixing and making up for mistakes than there is in avoiding them altogether. Mistakes will happen.

Edwards was a mistake, but there are far worse mistakes. At least with Edwards being cut, there are “solutions” behind him.

Andy Reid made a $100 million dollar mistake…and he cannot possibly make up for it. In all likelihood it will help cost him his current job. And he would not have admitted to that mistake….wasn’t going to make a change…injury forced his hand.

D3

November 16th, 2012
2:32 pm

JB — Thanks man. That’s exactly what I figured. That’s a lot of dead money, but hey, go ahead and admit your mistake, remove the cancer in the locker room, and move one. Boy, that’s a VERY costly mistake going forward. However, if Grimes and Turner are let go / cut, that’s over $18 million right there. Throw in Gonzo if he retires (which I hope he doesnt’) and you’re talking about $26 million with 3 players alone.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
2:39 pm

I have no clue how the cap works, seems like a big shell game. I mean, in theory I get it, but lawyering ain’t my sport.

So it is something that I really don’t have much an opinion on….I mean, I know it ain’t good, but, ho hum.

Unca' Bob

November 16th, 2012
2:46 pm

Big Ray,

That was Dallas LB Ware. MB must not have watched that game because that hit made me say.. oh!.

D3

November 16th, 2012
2:47 pm

And here’s the good news for 2013, it’s nowhere near the this past off-season where we had to pony up for several core guys (Bier, DeCoud, Snelling, HD). Check out the soon-to-be free agents for 2013:

Unrestricted
Gonzo
Grimes
Sam Baker
Chase Coffman
Drew Davis
Dominique Franks
Chris Hope-
Robert McClain
Todd McClure
Luke McCown
William Moore
Christopher Owens
Mike Peterson
Lawrence Sidbury
Tim Toone

Restricted
Vance Walker
Antone Smith
Michael Palmer
Robert McClain

Man, the more I learn about TD, the more I respect the hell out of him. That dude is one smart man. Only William Moore looks to be even halfway worth some dough, and I can’t see him making much more than DeCoud or if any more at that. Our restricted free agents are a thing of beauty. Those are all core guys and 2 of them (Palmer, McClain) could be vying for starting positions. I have to imagine that Grimes is gone (or he should be) and if we decide to keep Baker, Sidbury, and Owens, they surely can’t / won’t cost that much.

So in other words, it was a GREAT year to pull the plug on Edwards and he planned it out to where he could absorb the loss if needed.

Arno

November 16th, 2012
2:54 pm

Falcons 2012 total salary: $109,150,977
RE total salary: $4,550,000

That’s a 4% mistake/2012. Not as bad as sales tax, but pretty bad.

Birdman

November 16th, 2012
3:25 pm

Geo

November 16th, 2012
3:27 pm

Turner “questionable” for Sunday’s game. Hmmmm…

Slant Pattern

November 16th, 2012
3:37 pm

“This is where SP our resident offensive technician could come into play. I would like to see what kind of run plays that MJD was given in Jax under Koetter, who somehow found a way to utilize him despite a terrible QB in a trainwreck of a season. I know the default is to always go back and blame it on Smitty Ball, but if it looks like duck, walks like a duck, and sounds like a duck……..it’s a M____’ng duck” – D3

Ya’ll have been quite busy while I’ve been away!! It will take me a bit to read and catch up but I’m on it. Some seem to think I insult Kotter/ Cooter / Koetter because I just like that sort of thing which isn’t entirely incorrect but…BUT…the main reason is Koetters’ rushing attack is almost identical to MM’s ( Hence Kotter for those that never got it). In fact, Kotter ran it “up the gut”, tween the tackles, etc. more than ANYONE in the entire NFL, including our once very own favorite MM. I believe he went there on 70/ 69 percent of his run calls while the next closest was Pitts OC at like 63%. MM was around 55-57% so you can see where my fear of Kotter comes from. It has been months since I looked that stuff up so forgive a percent here or there off the top of me’ forgetful noggin.
I put up some of MJD’s highlight vids in the past and can again if someone wants that sort of thing to evaluate for themselves. Koetters offensive line numbers in the rushing aspect were stronger than ours while their pass protection numbers were near dead last so an excuse is ready made but it looks like MJD is just a beast mode runner more than anything else to me.
I’ll get back in few after I’ve caught up reading…and maybe one last margarita.

Slant Pattern

November 16th, 2012
3:40 pm

Oh and enjoy the peace while you can. I am working on our offensive line stats for so far this year and the Turner homers may not like it..or maybe they will, can’t tell yet.

Geo

November 16th, 2012
3:42 pm

SP, I was fearing for your health/sanity after the ghost of Mularkey reared its head last weekend. Good to have you back in the Cage.

snacktastic

November 16th, 2012
3:44 pm

@Geo: Hmmm…indeed. I was already thinking Quizz could get the majority of the carries this week. Smitty has insisted that fans are too quick to point at one player as being the problem, but even he has to try something different once in a while. I’d hate for it to take an injury to induce change in the lineup, but maybe some good will come out of it if Turner is inactive.

I must say, Cagers, staying away from the mainstream sports media this week has done a lot of good. I’m looking forward to a bounce-back performance by the Birds (OUR Birds, not theirs) on Sunday.

Slant Pattern

November 16th, 2012
3:57 pm

“SP, I was fearing for your health/sanity after the ghost of Mularkey reared its head last weekend. Good to have you back in the Cage.” – Geo

Thank you , thank you, good to be back. The immediate post game high tension arguments are rarely good for more than finger pointing and bad mojo. I just had to let the Taints sewer stench clear the air to get back in the mood for the next Cage detective investigation. I haven’t finished reading everything but it looks like ya’ll did fine without me as I knew ya would. The new people and 2nd wavers like meself have come on strong to join the OSCM’s in making the Falcons best blog even better. IMHO anyways :) .

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
3:59 pm

There are not Turner homers. But there are those who do focus the big picture, and that is we are 8-1, and MR2 is healthy. How we got here has no bearing of where we are going, for as you can all see, changes are coming. They will be somewhat subtle, Turner only carried the ball 13 times last week.

JJ

November 16th, 2012
4:35 pm

SP, Welcome back…BR has done admirably with the comic relief but nothing brings the coffee thru the nose better than you brother! PS, you know its a blog, dont let your feelings get involved!

DePlane

November 16th, 2012
4:45 pm

JB at 2:14…dang JB…where can I get me a job like that! lol!

DePlane

November 16th, 2012
5:11 pm

From Yastinkas:

Who needs Nicks? A lot of people thought Tampa Bay’s offensive line would crumble when All-Pro guard Carl Nicks went out with a season-ending injury. Surprisingly, the loss of Nicks doesn’t seem to be having a negative impact on rookie running back Doug Martin. In the two games since Nicks went out, Martin has averaged 8.3 yards per carry when running up the middle or to his left.

8.3 up the middle or left. I’m a little jealous…

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 16th, 2012
5:14 pm

SP, you might have to revert back to your old handle, last couple of weeks they are becoming far and few inbetween.

Big Ray

November 16th, 2012
5:17 pm

“SP, I was fearing for your health/sanity after the ghost of Mularkey reared its head last weekend. Good to have you back in the Cage.” – Geo

You ain’t the only one….I even tried to bait him into coming back….I thought surely there must be a residence somewhere that had a keyboard stuck in a flat screen tv….

Big Ray

November 16th, 2012
5:19 pm

LOL@ DePlane …..”Yastinkas”….THAT is on target!

Big Ray

November 16th, 2012
5:20 pm

SP, Welcome back…BR has done admirably with the comic relief but nothing brings the coffee thru the nose better than you brother!

Agreed wholeheartedly….and don’t let him get on a run…your nasal passages will not be safe while imbibing for quite some time…

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 16th, 2012
5:20 pm

DePlane, me TOO. Believe me…Martin does not tarry when it comes to hitting the hole…gettin gone.

falcon21

November 16th, 2012
5:24 pm

Just got caught up from reading all of todays posts, you guys are on fire, good stuff. No we cannot afford for Matt to get hurt but if we lose a starting o-lineman due to injury, they will wish they had given the rook more playing time.

Big Ray

November 16th, 2012
5:35 pm

Turner only carrying the ball 13 times last week is hardly the big picture, or the point. MR2 is healthy, but he still needs the help of the run game, and that is the real issue.

How much is playcalling (and here I stress timing), the OL failures, and who is running the ball (and their personal performance) is a circle jerk of a debate (yet here we are…).

The fact that Turner and Rodgers have practically identical “per carry” stats suggests that Turner is not the sole issue, though the fact that he gets 3 times as many carries is a factor that cannot be ignored….

I still feel that the Falcons run better when it’s Ryan calling the play during a no huddle-style drive. I also think that using a RB who can do more than simply lumber out of the backfield also makes a difference. Quizz can line up as a slot receiver, can catch out of the backfield, chip block and split out…all of these things make it harder to defend the run when you can’t be sure it’s coming.

With Turner, it’s obvious. You have a 50-50 chance of it being a run play.

Better fix it now. Come playoff time, we will win due to Ryan. But in the playoffs, you only play playoff teams . That means teams and coaches that can gameplan you out of your normal schemes. We don’t want anybody with a good defense (ahem…Chicago) keying in on Ryan every play and putting our beleaguered OL to the test with such vigor. Gotta keep them off balance somehow.

You do that by being able to do something besides fling it for 400 yards. It doesn’t make sense for Ryan to throw for 400 yards and 3 TDs and we lose. But it seems something like that happened to a guy named Drew Brees a year or so ago…in the playoffs no less….

We should learn from other folks lessons if we can….no?

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 16th, 2012
5:37 pm

Turner, groin injury, questionable for Sunday? Sounds like some clandestine sh!t TD/Smitty getting set to pull off. If for some strange reason he doesn’t play…just tell us the truth guys, in my Jack Nicholas voice, we can handle the TRUTH! Stevie Wonder can see whats coming.

Screen Pass

November 16th, 2012
5:38 pm

“PS — I always thought Screen Pass was a great name !” – BobbyDawg

I agree!! It is too bad Koetter actually uses them and thus the humor became a little too muted. I do find it odd they won’t let me in the Jax stadium on game days nor sign up under this name on the Jax boards tho :) !

The Beer Did Drag On

November 16th, 2012
5:46 pm

“It’s like when SP changed his handle, didn’t fool anyone. ” – JB

I’m pretty sure this one got everyone but BR.

Ok, I think that is all the posts that called my name like Beetlegeuse or Candyman 3 times. It is way too hard scrolling thru 10 pages to get to all the other good posts so I’ll just give the entire board a shout out and say great job.

Slant Pattern

November 16th, 2012
5:49 pm

“There are not Turner homers.” – MB

They may not be indigenous to this board so much but they are a plenty on others. Their screaming, kicking and blaming everything and everyone else under the sun is what inspired me to begin working on our offensive lines mid-season stats.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
5:56 pm

BL: on more commentary after a loss: it is hard to complain about victory. only so many ways you can express YES! after a win. In a loss, there are a thousand aspects that can be debated. Americans love to talk about how to make their interest better.

Slant Pattern

November 16th, 2012
6:04 pm

“SP, Welcome back…BR has done admirably with the comic relief but nothing brings the coffee thru the nose better than you brother! PS, you know its a blog, dont let your feelings get involved!” – JJ

Thank you kind sir, you flatter me too much. I am well aware my paganistic rituals involving trans dimensional, time temporal, category one drug induced hallucinogenic bearded reptiles to channel psychic powers that make D. Warwick green with envy ( She is actually one of them wearing ALOT of make-up but SHHhhh don’t tell ) can be off putting to the fine Christian community that has amassed here. As I cannot yet afford abestos coveralls for the afterlife I don’t mind staying in their good graces!

JB Falcon

November 16th, 2012
6:04 pm

DePlane 4:45, That works out to $3,075,630.25 per sack. For that kind of money I’d let them pick me up and throw me at the QB to get a sack. A DE built like a brick sh!t house with the corners knocked of is worthless if he has a sh!tty attitude. I think that was MS’s message, although I may not be correct.

Screen Pass

November 16th, 2012
6:07 pm

“SP, you might have to revert back to your old handle, last couple of weeks they are becoming far and few inbetween.” – Somebody

I do agree. However you, me and some of the other guys might enjoy beating C. Collingsworth and Pat Y. over the head with the “obvious 2×4″ just a tad more. That’s a tough call :) .

Slant Pattern

November 16th, 2012
6:10 pm

“You ain’t the only one….I even tried to bait him into coming back….I thought surely there must be a residence somewhere that had a keyboard stuck in a flat screen tv….” – BR

Cable has been out for a week, how did you know :) ?

“How much is playcalling (and here I stress timing), the OL failures, and who is running the ball (and their personal performance) is a circle jerk of a debate (yet here we are…). ” – BR

Great question and time for us to get back to the grindstone. I’ll show what I’ve got so far in the next post.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 16th, 2012
6:12 pm

TD/Smitty have a very good nack of reading fan displeasure (disappointment) in players, fans were disappointed with production, or the lack thereof from No Play Ray, I’m not saying they canned him because of chatter from the fans…I’m just saying they don live in cocoons either.

I am not insinuating the mumblings about Turner, thats beginning to turn into Chorus around the ATL, has anything to do him being questionable for Sundays game, all I know is, soon as Turner’s number is called, he gets stopped for a loss, or minimal gain…and this is repeated 5-6 times, the fans might get alittle antsy, start to hear a few BOO birds. I just hate being cynical…but this is a PR problem TD and the franchise can do without. Just sayin…

Slant Pattern

November 16th, 2012
6:23 pm

Ok, I don’t think I can get all the links and info in one post without giving the Blog Monster a snack and having to go buy yet another keyboard this week. A poster on another board linked to these stats ( http://www.nfl.com/stats/categorystats?tabSeq=2&statisticCategory=OFFENSIVE_LINE&conference=ALL&role=TM&season=2012&seasonType=REG ) at NFL.com which helped get me started so I’ll gladly give credit where its due. There has been much talk of McClure being “fail” on the O-line so far this year. These stats show we are actually having the most success running “tween the guards”, the middle so to speak, and the worst on the left side. This suggests the Baker/ Blaylock sector is weakest against the run at the midway point even tho were technically aren’t running ANYWHERE very successfully.
Next in defense of “MudDuck”, we have PFF listing him here ( https://www.profootballfocus.com/blog/2012/10/31/pffs-mid-season-all-nfc-south-team/ ) as their choice for midseason best Center. DOH!!! I will admit I don’t think PFF is infallible nor 100% gospel but I have a hard believing McClure can suxxors as much as many think and it not be visible to these guys. They mention he might be a liabilty in pass protection which suggests he must be doing pretty good at run blocking to get the nod here. I do the ghetto shoestring budget approach to my research so anyone with full access can maybe help further here.

JB Falcon

November 16th, 2012
6:30 pm

SP, Oh yeah, I forgot about the bearded dragon. :)

DePlane

November 16th, 2012
6:33 pm

Big Ray :) I like his nick name, lol!

JB, that’s a lot of green, I’d let em’ throw me at the QB a few times a game for that!

SP, hilarious prose!

DePlane

November 16th, 2012
6:36 pm

And SP, thanks for the statistical mining…..good stuff!

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
6:47 pm

Turner, groin injury, questionable for Sunday? Sounds like some clandestine sh!t TD/Smitty getting set to pull off. If for some strange reason he doesn’t play…just tell us the truth guys, in my Jack Nicholas voice, we can handle the TRUTH! Stevie Wonder can see whats coming.

I wonder if Turner has had this injury for some time, but did not want to take himself out. Now with the developments over the past week, finally said, EFF it, I’m hurt.

Chop Buster

November 16th, 2012
6:57 pm

Somebody, how convenient? Groin injury? Yeah right. He may as well have a sore throat this week because he was going to out of the game anyway. Whatever ailment they want to come up with for Turner is fine with me. I just want to see our running game with Rodgers, Snelling and Smith (if they have the ballz to do so).

Slant Pattern

November 16th, 2012
6:58 pm

If McClure is not the answer and in general our stats are pretty poor across the board then “is this a scheme/ OC problem?” would be the next logical question to me. This is gonna be tough without paying access to PFF as they usually keep the best “directional” running stats so I will have to use the more vague but somewhat useful PFO stats found here ( http://www.footballoutsiders.com/stats/ol ). One theory of more than one Cager is that our reliance on “power running” and not using other formations and styles is making us predictable and much easier to defend. Our “power success” rate according to PFO is 33% which is by far and away the lowest in the NFL, ranked dead last, last place, the big stinky dirty thirty-duece. In the “stuffed” category we are ranked 22 getting the stonewall on 20% of our runs. This doesn’t just suggest, it screams we are fail and suxxors at power running. Someone mused that 13 for 15 yards isn’t a big deal but considering 60 plays being a ball park avg. for play totals on offense in a game that equates to basically 25% of our offensive plays being flushed down the toilet. No bueno Kotter and Smitty.

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
7:06 pm

Remember in 10, Green Bay could not run the ball. The Saints have had their struggles too. Just sayin.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 16th, 2012
7:08 pm

Chop Buster, I think the “sore throat” excuse probably would’ve been more convincing. hahahahaha…

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 16th, 2012
7:20 pm

Yeah, really strange Smitty didn’t include him (Turner) in the injury report earlier in the week.

Slant Pattern

November 16th, 2012
7:28 pm

Is Koetter Kotter? part 2 or “Let’s face it, it looks like all number 2 so far” continued;

We have ended any argument that we are a power running team as clearly we are the scrapings at the leagues bottom. I prefer PFF’s directional notation to PFO’S but it all I got to work with so let’s see what happens. I mentioned in a previous post to D3 that Koetter ran into the center of the line the most in the NFL last year and PFO shows that happening on 69% of his run calls last year. Is he plowing Turner up McClures’ keester enough to make the Village People jealous again or is this year different? It says Koetter is down to 50% this year while in comparision our old friend MM is at 65% this year. We look to be 3rd behind only Philly and Washington in outside running so if PFO is correct then Koetter isn’t Kotter so far this year…kudos. Or is it? Running behind the Tackles show the lowest yard avg. suggesting Baker and Clabo are our worst run blockers or we don’t have speed, shiftiness, etc to run outside. Shocking as it may be, we have the highest Adjusted Line Yards” avg. behind RG with Center coming in 2nd.
Looks like we need to adjust where and how we run, with a strong possibilty of who we run also. I am getting tired and hungry but I’ll do one more showing our pass blocking.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
7:35 pm

heck, if JJ is in the game, I think a running game just needs to be show 2 or 3 times a quarter – but, with Snelling and Quizz.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
7:36 pm

the goal is to score. often. as quickly as possible – at least until you hit the magic 35 and, if up by 17, you can slog/ go for time of possession.

Paddy O

November 16th, 2012
7:37 pm

welcome back, to the same ole place you used to hang around good night, gracie!

Slant Pattern

November 16th, 2012
7:38 pm

“And SP, thanks for the statistical mining…..good stuff!” – Deplane

Thank you and no worries. If anyone can figure this mess out it is us!

Slant Pattern

November 16th, 2012
8:12 pm

Before I go and munch tacos I’ll leave this last link ( https://www.profootballfocus.com/blog/2012/11/07/signature-stat-snapshot-time-to-throw/ ) showing QB’s time to throw and time to sack. I can’t remember who but someone asked about it and for those that don’t do links the gist of it is thus;

M. Ryan is ranked at 14th with an avg. of 2.73 secs to throw

M. Ryan is ranked at 24th with avg. of 2.84 secs to sack

The O-line has improved slightly from last year but it certainly isn’t great. The fact Ryan is achieving MVP results with a so-so O-line should give a clear indication of the man’s skill and fortitude. It should also give some optimism of just how great this team can be when the O-line gets fixed. It also means the anti-Ryan trolls can go drink bleach with a battery acid chaser. The end, taco time!!

falcon21

November 16th, 2012
8:35 pm

Sounds like if our WR’s cannot run the 40 in under 2.73 seconds we better stay with the 20 and under throws. Talk about our problems, there you go. Thanks SP, good stuff!

falcon21

November 16th, 2012
9:17 pm

It just goes to show that we have the QB to get it done, the man is a winner. MB said today that Matt has not played very well in the playoffs, get the man a f-ing o-line and he will prove he can do his job. I know, I know, it’s just 21 with his o-line rants again. I get tired of it too. We have a good QB, fix the o-line and I will shut up about it.

falcon21

November 16th, 2012
9:18 pm

Later Cagers!

Wings

November 16th, 2012
9:35 pm

Good stuff SP. Glad to see all of you back on the blog. People have to realize you provide this blog with unconventional commentary and fun. Don’t let them stop you with their dribble. Sometimes it pays not to be serious if they would realize it.

DePlane

November 16th, 2012
9:37 pm

SP, lol!!! Yeah were gonna figure it out!

JB Falcon

November 16th, 2012
9:39 pm

21, come back and see us, Ya’ heah?

Big Ray

November 16th, 2012
10:12 pm

SP ,

Damn good posts….thought provoking for sure…refreshing!

Big Ray

November 16th, 2012
10:14 pm

F21 ,

Keep it up…’cause you ain’t nothin’ but right!

Matty Bicep

November 16th, 2012
11:34 pm

MB said today that Matt has not played very well in the playoffs, get the man a f-ing o-line and he will prove he can do his job.

Maybe, but Aaron Rogers has been sacked more than any other QB in the NFL this year. Does anyone expect GB to be an easy out in the playoffs? I am not dissing on MB, he just was not ready to take a team on his shoulders. I suspect he is now.

Matty Bicep

November 17th, 2012
12:45 am

But really, MR2 is really doing well this year. Is it because of Koetter? Is it our O line? Is it our Running Game?

NO, it is because MR2 is better than he was last year. In past years, he did not have the fitness to play at the level needed to carry a team. He admits as much. THAT is why I say getting to the playoffs and keeping him fresh and healthy is the single most important priority Smitty should have.

Wings

November 17th, 2012
7:40 am

I am happy Byron Leftwich is not starting for us this week.

DePlane

November 17th, 2012
9:39 am

I’m wondering what the mix of Sid, Matthews and Massaquoi will be behind Btruck this week. Matthews and Mass are are both fast and athletic. Who is the more physical player? (We know Sid is very physical and disruptive). Hard to tell but hopefully we’ll get a taste.

Matthews has a little more size at 6-4 268lbs vs. Massaquoi at 6-2 264lbs. With two years in the NFL under his belt Matthews should be ready to pop if he’s ever going to.

Between the three of them it will be interesting who plays containment better. As we’ve seen Sid is pretty good at crashing into the backfield. Can both Matthews and Mass play stand up end but also play from the 3 point? In preseason looking at Massaquoi in the 3 point, he just looks like a guy that can get some punch and make a move.

I’m excited to see something different and see one of these guys Rise Up! My guess is we’ll see more of Sid since he’s earned the opportunity, and a little of Matthews and Mass with each getting a taste.

DePlane

November 17th, 2012
9:42 am

On the same thread, I wonder if Mike Nolan evaluated these guys and determined that one of them was ready to get the job done, making it easier to say goodbye to the football worthless but cash rich Edwards.

DePlane

November 17th, 2012
9:44 am

The other rook I’d like to see worked into the D rotation is Robertson. At 315 he’s got a little more size and girth..maybe he can plug a hole.

DePlane

November 17th, 2012
9:47 am

Whoops, I see he’s listed at 304. My bad. Just thinking out loud. Maybe he just looks bigger to me, haha. Isn’t he the only true “Nose Tackle” on the roster?

DePlane

November 17th, 2012
10:00 am

I guess at 305 Robertson needs to put on a few lbs to play the 0 technique and occupy two o-line men. Can he shed blocks and move laterally down the line of scrimmage? Heck do we have anyone else who really excel’s at that?

Anyway, sorry to ramble on…I’d like to hear what others in the cage think. This is really the first week we’ve had a significant shake up and get to see one or more players get more playing time.

Chop Buster

November 17th, 2012
10:01 am

DePlane, I’d like to see Robertson in the middle as well. Looks like we will all finally get to see Matthews and Massaquoi. It probably was at Nolan’s recommendation to Smitty that we may as well get these guys some on field experience since Edwards wasn’t doing anything. After that NO game, we looked like the Falcons of the last two to three years–no consistent pressure on Brees.

DePlane

November 17th, 2012
10:07 am

On the other side, its interesting to see SP’s stats indicate we have less success running over left guard. I thought the problem was on the right side and that Blaylock was solid in the run game.

DePlane

November 17th, 2012
10:09 am

Chop, no pressure on Brees and also no plugging the holes in the run game either. While big running plays might skew the stats on our run D, it seems we still give up plenty of 4-5 yard runs, although I have checked the stats.

DePlane

November 17th, 2012
10:10 am

Whoops, I meant “haven’t” checked the stats.

Chop Buster

November 17th, 2012
10:16 am

DP (10:07), I could see the issue being on the left side. Think about it, most of our defensive problems have been on Baker’s side. I still say these guys need to go on a serious strength program, as well as using their leverage correctly. Baker’s problem is he’s always standing to high and never dips his hips. This running issue has been pointed out in the coaches tape as well, so why do they keep running to that side and up the middle where McClure gets pushed back constantly? I saw a play where Rodgers ran off tackle and picked up like 15 yards once he got around the corner. I think we get a little to simplistic trying to run Turner on the goal line like he’s a true power back…NOT.

Chop Buster

November 17th, 2012
10:20 am

DP (10:09), part of our problem is our DL are getting held by the OL. Also, they are getting on our LBs and safeties coming up and getting blocked as well. Once they get the the second level everyone is behind them and it’s just open field. That’s why Dunta was the last line against Ivory and I wondered where in the heck were Willie Mo and Decoud (our last line of defense). These guys are going to have to tighten up against these opponents we have upcoming and play disciplined ball. I’ve been seeing more zone defense lately as well. I don’t know why we’ve gone back to that exclusively.

Wings

November 17th, 2012
11:01 am

Could the right side of OL line be the weak point and in the runs to left, the right side defensive linemen shed their blocks easier and quickly to make the tackles going to the left? Even behind the right OL linemen?

Wings

November 17th, 2012
11:02 am

Even behind the left OL linemen? (should be)

Chop Buster

November 17th, 2012
11:34 am

Wings, I definitely know that Clabo has had his issues blocking last year and this year. Konz looks like the real deal though…young, strong and has some push. But if the RT isn’t working with him as a unit then it’s ineffective. I just wish we would solve this OL problem once and for all. We’ve been really dealing with this since Ryan’s arrival.

Paddy O

November 17th, 2012
4:15 pm

Quizz has more lateral agility than Turner, although a gofer tortoise probably does too. Quizz had an excellent against NO. Ever since Dahl left, our front 5 does not get good run blocking – no push. it is simply what it is. So, stop trying to run between the tackles and adjust the play calling. sadly for turner, he is 50/50 on pass catching. in a close game against top 25% teams, those drops can cost us.

Big Ray

November 17th, 2012
7:49 pm

I’d like to see Travian Roberton get some burn as well. My guess is he’s not gotten far enough in the apprenticeship program. That’s understandable.

Not worried about it. His time will come. Peria Jerry is toast anyway. Shouldn’t be here beyond next summer. And Babs’ days are unfortunately numbered. Corey Peters needs a good partner. Vance is a good rotation guy.

JB Falcon

November 17th, 2012
7:59 pm

Let me throw out some prognostications, or hopes, for tomorrow. We will get to see a little bit of Sid, the Octopus, and Mass. We will see at least one sack out or one of them. Which one of them will it be? I’ll go with Sid.

D3

November 17th, 2012
8:09 pm

Hey Gang, up in Tennessee visiting the in-laws for Thanksgiving. The Falcons are mostly the hot item in the South b/c I believe its on the regular fox game tomorrow and we’re up at the very edge of Virginia.

Just one little item…….

We all talk about the OL and how there’s no talent there. I agree to a point with that. The Bucs snagged the best FA OL this off-season, Carl Nicks. Not only did they lose Nicks for the year, but they also have a brand new coaching staff and rookie RB. How’s that turned out: Doug Martin is top 5 in rushing in the NFL I believe.

I’m not completely exempted TD from this because he definitely has not invested much in the OL.
But he did spend his first two draft picks on OL, one being the best Center in the draft and the other being a mammoth and athletic future LT.

So what does it all mean? I keep going back to my man ol’ Smitty. No change, no change, no change.

D3

November 17th, 2012
8:37 pm

Chop – maybe the best d@mn thing I’ve ever heard. Been dealing with this OL issue (pretty much WHOLESALE) for 5 years. Just effin’ unacceptable.

BR – you got it brother. That’s my #1 vote for 2013 1st rd draft pick…… DT. Luckily, there’s some big boys for us.

JB – great point. Can’t wait to see all 3.

DePlane

November 17th, 2012
10:17 pm

Chop @ 10:20am….it sure does seem like our DL get held a lot. But we rarely get the call.

DePlane

November 17th, 2012
10:57 pm

Paddy O…”gofer tortoise!! Lol!

falcon21

November 17th, 2012
11:00 pm

College football, you gotta love it. #1 Kansas State losing to unranked Baylor 52-24.

falcon21

November 17th, 2012
11:37 pm

#2 Oregon loses to Stanford, WOW!

snacktastic

November 17th, 2012
11:37 pm

And Stanford beats Oregon! BOOM!

Wabe

November 17th, 2012
11:41 pm

crazy day of college football..

i know UGA fans are siked.

legitimate opening to the national championship game in front of UGA.

falcon21

November 17th, 2012
11:45 pm

Gotta beat Tech and Bama and we are in the big game. Talking to my Dawg fans.

falcon21

November 18th, 2012
12:11 am

I do not like Lou Holtz, he does not like UGA, I think it is because we hired Mark and not his son Skip. Oh well, later y’all.

Paddy O

November 18th, 2012
3:42 am

kansas state just can’t handle that much publicity in football. a few years ago Kentucky and Vanderbitl were supposedly getting good. Rutgers did well for a couple.

JJ

November 18th, 2012
9:33 am

Morning Cage, If Spoon and Julio are not 100%, hope they sit them today. We have 2 div games coming up (bucs/taints) and this game doesnt matter that much. So Turner has had a hammie for the last few weeks (thats the excuse coming out of flowery branch) so sit him today. We will need him later in the season and playoffs. But really want to see how we do with our other 3 RB, yes come on down Antoine!!!

D3

November 18th, 2012
10:15 am

JJ — Totally agree. Just don’t get this fascination they have with Turner. It’s as though he has pictures on the entire staff up @ Flowery Branch. Definitely sit JJ and Spoon too. It’s time for some of these younger guys to step up. This would be a huge chance for Drew Davis, Kevin Cone, and Tim Toone to get some looks. Same goes for Antone Smith and all the DE’s. Will be heavily looking at the DE’s today to see who steps up. Sounds like Cliff Matt will be getting the most looks.

Wabe

November 18th, 2012
10:30 am

Quick check in…

Agree with most everything D3 just stated.

Will be an interesting day to look at some guys who’ll get that PT today to showcase something. The DE situation will be the most interesting. But, not sure what beating up on the Cardinals line will prove.

I wouldn’t surprise to see Abe walk out of today with 3 sacks or so. Biermann might get himself a couple too. That Cardinal O-Line is turrrrrrible.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 18th, 2012
10:35 am

Good Morning! All the talk of our run game, or the lack thereof, we’ve ignored the anemic pass rush, sorry, to have an “anemic” pass rush, you must first have one (pass rush). The Cardinals will be starting two new offensive linemen today…and probably the most immobile QB in the leauge (Skeleton) who couldn’t get out of the way of a 90 year old man on a cane ‘know disrespect to Pops’, this game is tailor made for a defensive breakout for our Birds. If we can’t manage 4~5 sacks today…

Wabe

November 18th, 2012
10:36 am

From ESPN.com twitter feed…

Mort
Julio Jones is adamant that he wants to play today. Will test out ankle shortly. If he is active he’s expected to be limited.

snacktastic

November 18th, 2012
10:51 am

Awwwwww it’s GAME DAY.

I don’t know what it is about the college game, but the craziness that happened last night has me excited for today, despite the former having absolutely no impact on the latter. Some will say days like yesterday make college ball better than the pros, but I think both games have their advantages.

Really looking forward to a bounce-back for the Falcons. Also, Colts-Patriots could be a good one.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
11:34 am

Julio is in.

Anything on Spoon?

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
11:36 am

Adam just reported Julio will play and his ankle is fine. “Limited basis”

SP will like this:

They also stated they will spread out receivers to help the run game.

snacktastic

November 18th, 2012
11:39 am

Spoon is out according to Nick Cellini on CBS.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
11:40 am

Thanks snacktastic.

Spoon wasn’t a real big deal for this game. Better to get him 100 percent for TB.

Still, 3 weeks for a low ankle sprain?

snacktastic

November 18th, 2012
11:43 am

BL: Definitely a bit worrisome that he’s been out this long for what was being called a “mild” injury when it happened. But he’ll be back when we really need him. We should handle the Cards offense either way.

Wings

November 18th, 2012
11:51 am

I wonder if Turner had not told them about the Hammie. If not, he is selfish.

This is the first game my gut does not feel good about. No specific things but not confident.

falcon21

November 18th, 2012
11:56 am

Wings, I may be wrong but I kinda feel good about todays game. I guess we will see, Go Birds, Falcons that is!

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
11:57 am

Wings

I agree. Just something off about this game, but I do believe they will pull out an ugly win.

DePlane

November 18th, 2012
12:08 pm

Today we are grillin’ up a mess of chicken and ribs.

DePlane

November 18th, 2012
12:11 pm

Snack…good karma in the college games somehow translates to a positive Sunday. Don’t know why that is, but seems to be the case more often then not. But…I don’t have any actual statistics to back that up. Pure speculation on my part my fellow speculators and prognosticators!

Go Falcons!!!

DePlane

November 18th, 2012
12:15 pm

D3, Julio is active. Agree on the young talent getting a chance. I agree with sitting the coaches sitting Spoon another week to make sure he’s healthy for our three divisional opponents coming up. Cone is inactive, so hope to see Davis. And would definitely like to see A. Smith in the mix along with Quizz.

DePlane

November 18th, 2012
12:16 pm

Sorry for the slop, “sitting” in there twice. Trying to multi-task, though the wife insists men aren’t capable of doing that. :)

Arno

November 18th, 2012
12:59 pm

When Cards have third and long, look for Fitz to fake at the sticks and go deep. It worked with Romo and Brees.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
12:59 pm

Oh lord,

Cardinals off a bye week, good defense…

It’s either gonna be a real close game, or a blowout.

JJ

November 18th, 2012
1:00 pm

***FFL***

To sit or start JJ? They say he’ll be limited but guess Ill start him…too much upside…ughhhhh
Also sitting RG3 in favor of Palmer vs taints…ughhhh

Nookah, Id wish you good luck but dont think you will need it today against my team.
We havent had a nesta/marley quote in quite sometime by the way, lol.

falcon21

November 18th, 2012
1:02 pm

I just hope we don’t make those rookie o-lineman look like All-Pros.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
1:05 pm

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
1:06 pm

Man.

What a horrible start.

snacktastic

November 18th, 2012
1:07 pm

Worst start I’ve seen all season.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
1:12 pm

Turner for a pass play?

What are these coaches thinking?

uga_b

November 18th, 2012
1:12 pm

Doesn’t look good at the moment.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
1:13 pm

That’s it. I’m on the Smith is fail bandwagon.

I’m truly sick to my stomach right now.

falcon21

November 18th, 2012
1:15 pm

Roddy drop, Turner drop, o-line, nevermind.

snacktastic

November 18th, 2012
1:16 pm

Dent with a good tackle.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 18th, 2012
1:18 pm

Dont think that was Dent…Peterson?

JB Falcon

November 18th, 2012
1:19 pm

Okay, we spotted them 10 so that they will have some points at the end of the game. A shutout would just look bad. Game On!

Arno

November 18th, 2012
1:20 pm

Bizarre. Mirror image of how the Saints game started.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 18th, 2012
1:20 pm

When a Team comes out this flat…sign coaches don’t have’em prepared…ready to play. IMO…

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
1:20 pm

Offense needs to get their sh!t together.

JJ

November 18th, 2012
1:20 pm

f21, was hopeing to see less of turner today…1 rush 0 yards and 1 catch dropped.

JJ

November 18th, 2012
1:21 pm

Time for me to eat some crow…miss weems!

Wings

November 18th, 2012
1:21 pm

MB it looks like the message was sent and understood by all.

JJ

November 18th, 2012
1:23 pm

BOO birds for turner

uga_b

November 18th, 2012
1:24 pm

Great punt by the 6th rounder

snacktastic

November 18th, 2012
1:24 pm

Well, at least special teams made a play. Let’s get that safety.

falcon21

November 18th, 2012
1:25 pm

Not bad o-line play as far as protection goes on that series.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
1:26 pm

Turner is done.

uga_b

November 18th, 2012
1:27 pm

Stay stout boys

falcon21

November 18th, 2012
1:27 pm

Watch out for Fitz.

snacktastic

November 18th, 2012
1:28 pm

3rd down stop! Now we’re getting somewhere.

JJ

November 18th, 2012
1:29 pm

franks is worthless as pr!!!

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 18th, 2012
1:30 pm

I’ve seen players come back 2 weeks after a high ankle sprain, if I am not mistaken? Arian Foster had one this year…came back in 2 weeks.

Don’t know whats going on with Spoon?

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
1:31 pm

WTB a touchdown from our offense.

uga_b

November 18th, 2012
1:32 pm

C’mon Matt!

falcon21

November 18th, 2012
1:32 pm

JJ, I don’t want to see any of Turner,

falcon21

November 18th, 2012
1:34 pm

Wings, looks like you were right.

Chop Buster

November 18th, 2012
1:37 pm

The play calling absolutely stinks. What happen to the screens?

JJ

November 18th, 2012
1:37 pm

once again, franks succcccccccs!!!

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
1:38 pm

Yeah. Why is franks still a PR?

Somebody on that coaching staff needs to be fired.

falcon21

November 18th, 2012
1:39 pm

Wings

November 18th, 2012
1:39 pm

I think we will win the game 21. Awful QB for them

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 18th, 2012
1:40 pm

This what an ANEMIC run game gets ya…

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
1:41 pm

Somebody wanna explain this to me?

Wings

November 18th, 2012
1:42 pm

This is the bears 2010 game again

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
1:43 pm

Big Ray

There is no explanation. This is pathetic.

falcon21

November 18th, 2012
1:43 pm

Please let Antoine play.

Wings

November 18th, 2012
1:45 pm

2011 bears game

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
1:47 pm

One of those INTs was clearly on the receiver. However, I have seen some gawdawful throws from Ryan so far. There’s no other way to say that.

JB Falcon

November 18th, 2012
1:48 pm

It’s time for someone to go to the locker room and tell the Falcons that the game has started.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 18th, 2012
1:49 pm

Ahh, where are the young guys (DE’s) we were told would get some burn today?

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
1:50 pm

Ryan looks almost like Blaine Gabbert out there.

Turner looks like T.J. Ducket…on a bad day…

Wings

November 18th, 2012
1:50 pm

I really believe Smitty has interfered with all aspects of the falcons game.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
1:50 pm

Roders is at least traveling forward more than three feet each time he carries.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
1:51 pm

Julio falls down…ugh…wasted play.

falcon21

November 18th, 2012
1:51 pm

Looks like Turner has been benched, I hope Franks is next.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
1:53 pm

WTF is up with our guys falling down????

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
1:54 pm

Good stuff…this is what JacQuizz gives you. Turner can NEVER give you that.

We knew….why’d it take the CS 9 freakin’ games?

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
1:54 pm

How about that? Turner finally “breaks” one…

Greg Mendel

November 18th, 2012
1:55 pm

Thank heaven for Rodgers and Gonzo.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
1:55 pm

Can we please treat 3rd and 1 like it’s 3rd and 8?

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
1:56 pm

WTF!!!!!!!

Why do we run that play? Why can’t we block? WTF is our problem??!!!!!

Greg Mendel

November 18th, 2012
1:56 pm

Oh, and thank heaven for Bryant.

falcon21

November 18th, 2012
1:56 pm

Gotta love this o-line!!!

JB Falcon

November 18th, 2012
1:57 pm

BR, breaking one for Turner is more than one yard.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
1:57 pm

Do you know how much I paid for this 60″ plasma tv? I almost put a .40 caliber hollow point round through it!!

snacktastic

November 18th, 2012
1:58 pm

I hate to say it, but we’re giving our critics a lot of ammo today. 3rd and short, run game, and run D issues haven’t gone anywhere.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
1:58 pm

There is no sugar coating it. It’s not on Turner.

This offensive line cannot run block for sh!t.

Chop Buster

November 18th, 2012
1:58 pm

Well we’ll see that this team is made of today. These are the types of defenses they will face should they make it to the playoffs.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 18th, 2012
1:58 pm

WOW! I know we’re living on the edge when we celebrate a 5 yard run from Turner…take what we can get.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
1:59 pm

I can hear Koetter right now

“We didn’t block that one right”

Yeah….no sh!t.

JJ

November 18th, 2012
1:59 pm

Baker, how bout bocking the blitzing LB RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOU ON 3RD N 1!!!

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
1:59 pm

Snelling had ZERO chance on that run play.

Heads need to roll! Make it happen, AB.

Arno

November 18th, 2012
2:00 pm

TV and keypad are across the room from each other. Good way to blow off frustration.

Greg Mendel

November 18th, 2012
2:00 pm

New AZ quarterback? Probably bad news for the Birds. The local birds, that is.

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 18th, 2012
2:01 pm

Hey Guys, don’t be so quick to blame the OL…the Arizona defense know we don’t have the personnel in the backfield thats capable of bouncing it to the outside, so they clog the the running lanes.

snacktastic

November 18th, 2012
2:01 pm

3rd-string QB in? They must want us to come back.

snacktastic

November 18th, 2012
2:03 pm

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:03 pm

They’re gonna watch the replay on that one.

I sure hope we get that TD. Can’t count on our offense to score right now.

Wings

November 18th, 2012
2:05 pm

snacktastic that is funny

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:07 pm

Hell yeah. Abe and Babs to the rescue.

Arno

November 18th, 2012
2:08 pm

Hopefully the Cardinals thanksgiving dinner is OVER.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
2:08 pm

Somebody

That was all on the online. Sam completely missed a block.

snacktastic

November 18th, 2012
2:08 pm

Wings, know what’s even funnier? We get a TD as soon as they put him in. Time to make them pay.

falcon21

November 18th, 2012
2:09 pm

Truth, I get your point but our o-line is still horrible.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:09 pm

One way or another, it seems we are determined to give them every shot at beating us.

Glad McClain has some speed.

Wings

November 18th, 2012
2:09 pm

I’m glad we are not playing GB, Houston, etc

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:10 pm

Great break on the ball/runner by William Moore.

snacktastic

November 18th, 2012
2:10 pm

D will get going on this drive.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:10 pm

Wow. McClain coming with some heat.

This defense is doing what they’re supposed to do. They’re putting us in this game.

JB Falcon

November 18th, 2012
2:12 pm

McClain came to play today.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:12 pm

I think any of us would like to get paid that much to catch punted balls and never actually get hit.

Greg Mendel

November 18th, 2012
2:14 pm

The Cards are doing everything they can to give back the game. Falcons defense appears inclined to accept the gift. Hope the offense concurs.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
2:14 pm

Big Ray

They better. This is one of the worst offenses in the league.

Wings

I agree. We would have been blown out by a better offense. Looks like the coaches have a lot of soul searching on offense.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:15 pm

I used to have a sense of excietement….when the offense came on the field. Now I have a sense of dread. Can we change that please?

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:16 pm

Big Lou ,

True, they have no excuse. But on a day that the offense is doing everything except what it’s supposed to do, we need the other side of the ball to do what they are supposed to do.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:17 pm

That’s more like it.

Ryan with wonderful movement in the pocket/on his feet that time.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:18 pm

That run by Turner earlier was a great “team” run.

And Roddy is straight up beasting…

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:20 pm

Mud Duck is down…who knows for how long.

Time for Joe Hawley to get back into the fire he never should have been taken out of in the first place.

Greg Mendel

November 18th, 2012
2:20 pm

Falcons o-line looking better — after they found Ray Edwards’ severed ear nailed to the bench.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
2:20 pm

Well,

Here comes that Oline change everyone wanted.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
2:22 pm

Never mind…

Chop Buster

November 18th, 2012
2:22 pm

This is what pisses me off about the play calling. Be aggressive and go for the TD. Wasted plays!!!

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:22 pm

And Hawley whiffs on his very first block…..

Okay, we either have to draft another center so we can have a guy to take over for Mud Duck next season…or we draft a backup to Konz when he takes over next year.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
2:22 pm

HD is pretty pedestrian. He looks scared to get hit.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:23 pm

Greg Mendel – HILARIOUS….

SOMEBODY NEEDS TO TELL THE TRUTH

November 18th, 2012
2:23 pm

Man, What I wouldn’t give of Arthur Blanks money, to get a 220lb RB with 4.35 speed.

Wings

November 18th, 2012
2:23 pm

Here we go crawling into the endzone. Throw it to roddy in the end zone.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
2:24 pm

Big Ray

That was on purpose. It was a screen play.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:24 pm

Big Lou ,

Folks want Konz at Center, not Hawley….and I think we just saw why.

I was in favor of him being put at Center over a year ago. For the purpose of finding out whether or not he could be starting Center in this League. At present, it seems he cannot. And he’s really too short/light to be a Guard.

Big Lou

November 18th, 2012
2:25 pm

Left gaurd missed the block on that last pass play.

snacktastic

November 18th, 2012
2:25 pm

There go those red zone issues. We may still get the ball back before the half, though.

Big Ray

November 18th, 2012
2:25 pm

And so we tie the game…which is no doubt satisfactory to Smitty, I bet.

We better have a MUCH better second half with this offense.