Assume if you will that the Falcons were not in the playoff hunt coming into week 16. It isn’t hard to believe, afterall we came into the season lead by a rookie QB and a back-up running back to one of the best backs to ever play the game. The Falcons have done something that no one saw happening when the 2008 season began and that is why the game in Minnesota is so huge, we have a chance to continue this improbable run to the playoffs and a chance to make the NFL take notice.
The Vikingsare not a bad team, no actually they are. What kind of team who boasts one of the best defenses in recent memory not have a very weak division wrapped up? The Vikes are lead by Tavaris Jackson this week who is coming off of his 4 TD drubbing of the Cardinals and NFC offensive player of the week honors and you know what? I am not impressed at all.
When I look at a team match-up I try to stay pretty objective and look at the match-ups and I have to say I really like our chances to beat the Vikings in the final road game for the Falcons in the regular season and here is why.
Falcons are playing with purpose: We need this game more than the Vikings do. We are playing for our lives while the Vikings just need the Bears to play like the Bears and they win the NFC North. Mike Smith has proven that he is the NFC coach of the year and that his team is always prepared for the team they face. This is the kind of game that should be a classic strength vs. strength match-up with the Vikings D vs. the Falcons offense, especially the running game.
Injuries will be a factor in this game: Pat Williams, the lauded defensive tackle is out for Sundays game and with that Michael Turner should find more running room and give the Falcons O-line less pressure.
Stop Peterson: Adrian Peterson is the Vikings best weapon, and if the Falcons can keep him confined and bring him down quickly we will win. Peterson is an explosive back and has proven himself to be a featured player in only his second year in the NFL but he is not unstoppable and if the Birds can keep the Vikings from passing the ball effectively then we can make the Vikings one dimensional.
Matt Ryan needs to play smart: Ryan only needs to not turn the ball over and convert short yardage passes to allow the running game eat clock and keep the Viking defense on the field tired. Michael Turner had a great game last week and is one of the main reasons why this game means something.
This game is huge and I have faith in my birds pulling out the win.
Falcons 23-Vikings 13
The Birds Speaks!