DETROIT – It was less than an hour before the game when the Falcons emerged from a tunnel at Ford Field and found the entire Detroit Lions team standing there in the corner of the end zone. Mike Peterson, self-appointed drill sergeant in matters such as these, announced his team’s arrival.
“We had somewhere to go and they were in our way,” the Falcons linebacker said. “I said, ‘We’re not going around them — we’re going this way [straight ahead].’ I said, ‘Get the bleepity bleep out of the way.’”
Some pre-rumble-like jawing ensued. There were no punches but it got uncomfortable enough that pipsqueak game officials were forced to step in and separate a thousand pounds of humanity.
This was a good sign for the Falcons.
There hasn’t been a game this season when they didn’t slip a gear at some point. Sunday’s game was