Wait until next Year
There is a lot of pain in the Falcons nest, which is exactly what to expect from a team and their
Fans that got so close to the prized trip to a Super Bowl. I truly hope Blank and Dimitroff take a page from last years off season and don’t blow things up as some had called for after the playoff loss to the Giants , for this 2012 Atlanta Falcon team played tough focused football and have taken that promised next step.
A dominant pass rusher and a cover back for the leagues top tight ends on defense and a king kong style guard for the offensive line may be all we need along with an extension for Matt Ryan and to talk Tony G into coming back one more year. That’s how close I feel we were to going to Louisiana.
San Francisco is a very talented team, they were involved in the championship last year , and Atlanta can look to that for inspiration, and another next step. This was a game of two halves, two tough teams fighting hard to get to the big game, Atlanta taking the first half and San Francisco the second half. Forget the lack of pass rush without a hundred percent Abraham, the lack of a rushing attack that haunted the birds all year, forget the interception which comes with throwing the ball over forty times and forget the dagger through the heart lost unforced fumble, the two turnovers in San Francisco territory, because with all that going down sour for the home team against a team as good as San Francisco, who I see as a legit candidate to win the Super Bowl, Atlanta had the ball with a first down on the San Francisco 16 yard line with enough time on the clock to manage four plays for a first down or more importantly a winning touchdown.
How many coaches, players, fans would have taken that scenario of a chance at the start of the game knowing it to be a grueling game against one of the better pro bowl dominated teams in the league who had just demolished the Aaron Rodgers led packers a week earlier ? There were twenty six teams and their flocks watching and wishing it was them at play. Here in New England it’s been twenty four hours of pointing fingers and what it really comes down to looking back on the Championship day of home team losses is the Super Bowl teams have Super defenses. Atlanta and New England never scored in the second half of there matches. No matter how good a first half you have, and the Falcons were as good in the first half as a team can be, there were changes made, schemes designed to change that at halftime, and San Francisco deserves the credit of slowing down Julio and Roddy in the second half, stepping up pressure when the running game hadn’t kept them at bay, and getting that fumble that at least would have been a
Atlanta field goal that would have made the last drive a different tale. Our defense was on the field a little too much in that fourth quarter again. But demolition is not what we need.
A year ago in the January loss in New York, our offense never scored a point. Atlanta scored twenty four points against a Forty-Niner defense that only gave up an average of 17 all year. The birds had the advantage in First downs, passing yards and time of possession, stats not often associated in defeat. The acquisition of Julio looks like pure genius with his Championship performance. Get a mauling guard to open holes, and Jaquizz who is no doubt the running back of next year, will make the Best offense Atlanta has ever had that much more dangerous. Maybe a healthy Bradie Ewing will help too. Lets give Tony a couple of months of final decision making, feelings can change. Last January we went out and shuffled in Mike Nolan and Dirk Koetter, two coaches who deserve applause for the success this year, and an area of no longer concern unless other teams swipe them away. On defense, a pass rusher is indeed needed, especially after Edwards failed. The secondary was much improved, Moore and Decoud are solid and the acquisition of Asante was a steal. Will Grimes come back ? Bring up Schiller from the practice squad, then the linebackers Dent, Nicholas and led by Spoon, are as good as any group in the game. A piece on October 23 from Orlando Ledbetter viewed the falcons as having to Stop the run, better tackling would help, and Improve the run. How fitting to repeat that article. Little tweaks, will make that difference.
The one thing that needs to be blown up is the Georgia dome, it has served the Birds well, but this team, the franchise and especially the fans now need a new home. The city , and a national audience, saw what real excitement this team can generate, how it now can not only dominate during the season and win division titles, but now has taken the next step at winning in the playoffs. The sea of red, the decibel levels matching the best fan bases, the entire January in Atlanta because of Falcon football that brought a Championship game to town with a chance to win that game, Atlanta deserves a new, modern, retractable roof stadium that will take the whole Falcon nation flying to new heights. Close the roof when we need the crowd loud.
In sports, there is always the saying, ’Wait until next year’. With so much improvement gained in 2012, how could Atlanta not think that ?