Friday, August 31, 2018

2018 Atlanta Falcons Season Preview

The 2017 Atlanta Falcons were able to parlay a 10-6 record into a playoff berth and upset the Los Angeles Rams before losing to the eventual Champion Philadelphia Eagles in the Divisional Round of the playoffs.  There's no reason to believe this team can't post double digit wins again as well as compete for the division title.  The offense which already has stars Julio Jones, Matt Ryan, and Devonta Freeman added star Alabama receiver Steven Ridley to the mix.  There is too much talent on this team to think their offense won't keep them in most games.  Despite 4,000 yards passing Ryan wasn't the player who won MVP in 2016.  Devonta Freeman fought through injuries and didn't put up big numbers and Julio Jones just couldn't find the end zone consistently. This offense is too good to struggle again or second year offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian may find himself looking for another job.

  The bend but don't break defense played admirably.  I can't really fault them for the Falcons issues.  They need to get after the quarterback more and improve on getting turnovers.  The Falcons didn't invest heavily on defense in the draft nor pick up any major players for that side of the ball so they'll need to scheme better to see any real improvement.  

I like coach Dan Quinn and based on the team's ability to reach the Super Bowl two years ago I have faith this team can turn it around.  The offense was historically good in 2016 but changing coordinators on that side of the ball seemed to make a huge difference to the negative.  I can't see that trend continuing.  The Falcons are in a tough division but I can see 11 wins for this team and a playoff berth.  Hopefully this season will see a team that is again worthy of a Super Bowl appearance.

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