I don’t know what to tell you, Falcons fans. I tend to be a very optimistic fan, but there seems to be something missing.
Atlanta dropped their second game of the season to the Miami Dolphins 27-23. They are currently 1-2 on the season. That’s right, they are two games behind the New Orleans Saints and tied with the Carolina Panthers.
There are, however, a few good things that came from this game.
The running game is still there. We’ve learned that Jacquizz Rodgers and Jason Snelling can more than fill in for Steven Jackson when he’s out. In fact, the Falcons ran the ball very well against a tough Miami Defense.
The weakness in the offensive line seemed non-existent. Zero sacks in the entire game with a handful of hits and a few pressures. Trueblood had a bad penalty which may have been pretty bad near the end of the game.
Pass rush. With three sacks, Atlanta seemed to making a statement that they have what it takes to put pressure on the quarterback.
Coverage was also decent on the outside. The deep pass wasn’t there at all. Asante and Trufant locked out the deep threat. However, the slot pass protections seemed loss. Any time the Dolphins wanted to throw a five yard pass, there was no problem.
This brings me to the negatives. Believe it or not, there weren’t many of them. Matt Ryan only threw one interception at the end of the game and it seemed like he wasn’t on the same page as his receiver.
Penalties killed the Falcons. Coming off of a year when the Falcons ranked first in history with the fewest penalties, the amount in this game was just another wall to break through.
The run defense was always a question, but in this game, it was a breaking point. Atlanta looked good a few times, but the majority of the game, Atlanta couldn’t stop the dolphins from breaking out 5-7 yards consistently.
The intangibles seemed to be lacking. If you look at the stats, Atlanta seemed to beat Miami in almost every single category. There is no reason the Falcons should have lost. That’s what makes it such a tough game to take. A lot of times, Atlanta won games last season that they shouldn’t have just because they had what it takes to win. That’s what they lost this week. Miami played a worse game, but for some reason, they were able to keep it a game instead of being blown out. When it counted, they pulled out a tough win.
I hate to break it to you, Falcons fans, Atlanta lost the same way the won a lot of their wins last season. By simply letting the game get out of hand. It hurts, but the season isn’t over. If Atlanta can pull out an upset against the Patriots, we will see a team that can still make that push to be the NFC South Champions. But they don’t look like it now.