Yesterday the Atlanta Falcons met the Tennessee Titans at a high school field in Dalton, Georgia for an inter-squad practice. Apparently it went very well. Here is a sound byte from QB Matt Ryan:
I think we got a lot accomplished. It was good for us to communicate against a different defense and see some different looks, to really make sure that we are on top of our assignments. It was really productive for us.
That was really the point of this meet-up between the two teams. Obviously they won’t play each other this season, but that didn’t stop the Falcons from practicing with the Jaguars in training camp in 2011.
But Ryan’s point is what we are really looking for from teams practicing together in training camp. There is only so many times you can face off against the same defense, and the same players before you begin to recognize all of their tendencies, strengths, strategies, etc. The same goes for the defense facing the same offense day in, day out. A change of scenery will help both teams in their focus during training camp practices.
Apparently the Falcons passing attack didn’t miss a beat, with all four of the Falcons quarterbacks going a combined 27 of 31, a pretty good number no matter if you are throwing against a defense or not. Ryan, apparently, was especially sharp.
Obviously the head coaches felt the practice was extremely productive. Here’s what Mike Smith had to say:
I will be in touch with Mike (Munchak, HC of Titans) to see if we can do this in the future.
If it really was that beneficial, I would expect to continue seeing this trend.