MATT RYAN, FALCONS FACE CLASS OF NFC EAST

Well Atlanta did all they could do to make Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers look like the real Super Bowl contenders this past Sunday in what could’ve been the worst display of professional football I’ve ever seen in one half. The offense couldn’t muster a third down conversion and the defense couldn’t stop the lowly Panthers on third down. Now I know it’s just one game and a season that does not make, but I dare to say that the team visiting Atlanta this weekend may be a bit better than Carolina. Something has to give.
The Giants are coming off a stellar performance against that team from the swamps that used to own the NFC South. New York threw 52 points up on the reeling Saints and looked very much like the team that stomped these same Falcons in the opening round of last year’s playoffs. Eli Manning seems to have found his groove again and this Wilson kid is legit. Their defensive front gets after the QB as good as any team in football, and after the line performance on Sunday in Carolina, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t real concerned.
On the flip side I see a team just as inconsistent as Atlanta. Are we going to see the team that got pounded by Washington and Cincinnati, or the juggernaut that just made New Orleans look like a high school football team? Who knows? This is one crazy season to say the least.
I do know this… Atlanta is pretty bleeping good in the Georgia Dome. Nobody has come into Atlanta and left with a smile so far this season. These birds DO rise up when they’re in the Dirty and that keeps me optimistic. Mike Smith doesn’t lose back-to-back games very often and I think he’ll have his team ready to play. If the Falcons don’t feel like they need this one, they never will.
The Falcons have a chance to silence the critics (myself inclusive) and send a message to the rest of the league. A victory against the reigning champs on Sunday and all is forgiven. Every “good” team in the NFL this year has a game that they’d really like back. Let’s just hope it was last week’s game and not this week’s.
I think last week’s game was just one of those games the Falcons took lighter than their opponent. I’m not betting against Atlanta at home, at least not until it’s playoff time. Mike Nolan will make the proper adjustments and there is no way in hell we have another first half like we did last Sunday. It’s just not humanly possible. Falcons win at home and inch closer to home-field throughout. Falcons 31, Yankees 28. Thanks for reading and make some noise this weekend if you’re at the game. Go Coons.

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