Atlanta Falcons vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: The Finesse and the Physical Clash…

Jan 1, 2012; Atlanta, GA, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Preston Parker (87) gets tackled by Atlanta Falcons defensive back Chris Owens (21) and cornerback Dominique Franks (24) during the second quarter at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Josh D. Weiss-US PRESSWIRE


A lot of former and current NFL employees/players say that every week in the league is a battle…

That statement couldn’t be more truer for the Falcons.

Atlanta hasn’t had a ‘pretty’ win since the San Diego game. They’ve grinded their way to a 9-1 season record, and it looks like they will have to keep grinding if they want to make it out of Tampa Bay with a win. The Atlanta Falcons fly to ‘Buc’ town to face Josh Freeman and a Buccaneer team that has been on a roll the last couple of weeks. Look for the Falcons to be tested once again, especially on defense….Rookie Running Back Doug Martin has been hot, rushing for over 1000 yards in ten games. I’m sure Tampa will look to get him going so Josh Freeman, who happens to be hot also, can play pitch-and-catch with his big play receivers.

Mike Smith and Dirk Kottier will look to attack this defense through the air. The Buccaneers rank dead-last in pass yardage given up, so I’m sure Matt Ryan is looking forward to the opportunity to pad his stats after the 5-int stinker he laid in The Dome. But remember, these Falcons struggle with physical teams, and the Bucs are very physical on both sides of the ball. They have the #1 ranked rush defense in the league, so look for Turner to put up a 1/3 of the yards the Bucs allow a game. Even though Tampa doesn’t get a lot of sacks, I still think the O-line may struggle to protect Ryan. Teams know the Falcons can’t run the football, so look for the Tampa’s D-line to ‘Pin their ears back’ the majority of the plays, with HOF-bound Ronde Barber and standout rookie Mark Barron looking to hawk wherever the ball is thrown.

Long gone are the days when the Bucs needed the defense to carry the team. Lead by Josh Freeman and rookie sensation Doug Martin, the Bucs have one of the most potent offenses in the league. They can run when they need to, pass when they have to, and can put up points in bunches. They rank 4th in the league in scoring, so I don’t expect them to struggle in the red zone like most teams do against the Falcons. With targets like Mike Williams and Vincent Jackson (who have 13 td’s between them), they’re a threat to score inside the 20 each time they make it there. It will be interesting to see if Asante and Dunta will be able to slow down these targets that have a knack for getting open. Oh, and Doug Martin? That man runs HARD…


Everyone on the Falcons defense will need a extra pair of arms this game. If they arn’t ready to tackle this man, he will put up huge numbers. Like I mentioned earlier, he’s averaging 100 yards a game and fantasy analysts are predicting a big game from him. Not that I care about fantasy football, but football in general is about match-ups…

This is not a good match-up for the Falcons…

He put up 250+ yards against Oakland, so this man is no slouch. This team with a run game is one of the toughest in the league to beat. Donald Penn and the rest of the O-line are playing in-sync, and first year head coach Greg Schiano has his team ready to make a playoff push. They will look to push the Falcons out of Tampa Bay with their second loss of the season, giving the Bucs a 3-1 division lead. But, the Falcons have preveiled against odds all season, I’m curious to see if they will be able to do it again. Hopefully Julio and Sean Weatherspoon will be ready to go this Sunday. We’ll see what the Football Gods have in store for the Atlanta this game.

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  • Sumit Goyal

    First of all, Nick is on IR…I really don’t need to pay much detail since you are not even aware of OL

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