When any team goes up against a team with the number of weapons and a quality quarterback, that team needs to have as many weapons on the defensive side of the ball to counter those offensive weapons. Luckily, the Falcons seems to be getting back crucial parts of their secondary just in the nick of time.
Brent Grimes was injured in a game against the Minnesota Vikings, underwent a minor knee operation, and has sat out all the games since. Kelvin Hayden hasn’t played since the home game against the Tennessee Titans due to a toe injury. The bad news is they had to sit for a period of time. The good news is that Grimes has been practicing, and Hayden should begin practicing within a couple days.
During the weeks that the Falcons went without those two corners, we haven’t experienced the most elite receivers (with the notable exception of Andre Johnson who beasted on us). But the defensive backs who were covering him were not elite. Having Grimes to play the number one and Hayden playing nickel corner agaisnt the slot is essential against the Saints. They are two of our best corners (Grimes is a great athlete, and Hayden is has a tremendous amount of experience) and having them against an offensive juggernaut like the Saints is essential, and definitely tips the scale slightly toward our side. Having Chris Owens and Dominique Franks getting playing time the past couple weeks is also important as they can play on the fourth and fifth receivers an offense may put on the field.