Wow! an amazing Sunday night game for the Falcons home opener, and with it get their season back on track with a topsy turvy win against Michael Vick’s Eagles.
It seems fitting that turnovers were the Falcons downfall in week 1 against the Bears, they were the Falcons saviour this week. The Defense forced four turnovers (including the turnover on downs at the end of the game) and looked a lot better than last week. Numerous times they were given less than stellar field position and they held their ground in the red zone. In terms of the Falcon pass rush the Falcons looked good, it may not have shown in the sack column but the front seven looked good. My standout performer of that group was Peria Jerry, who constantly penetrated the O-Line creating issues for Vick, most notably forcing the fumble that led to the big Ray Edwards run.
Speaking of Ray Edwards he was terrific in the run game tonight holding his own at the point of attack and causing some pressure on Vick as well. On the back end Dunta Robinson didn’t have the best of games he needs to regain his composure as he slips over all too often. Grimes, Hayden and Moore were fantastic today, with Grimes covering Jackson, Hayden getting the pick and Moore just being an all round force in both the pass and the run game. Moore is going to be very special!
On Offense, it was a bit hit and miss at times. In the third quarter, the Falcons struggled to get anything better than a three and out. However they more than made up for it by their awesome display in the redzone, out of 5 trips they got 5TD’s. That is fantastic. With Roddy being held in check most of the game, it was up to Tony Gonzalez (as i said before the game it would be) to provide the receptions today. Aided by sprinklings of Julio Jones, the Falcons pass game looked threatening when Ryan was given time by the O-Line.
Now comes the bad bit, the O-Line looked woeful at times. To save embarrassment of a few i thought Hawley had a decent game minus the holding penalties, Blalock looked ok and Reynolds regrouped well after a terrible start where he was getting owned by Cullen Jenkins.
Clabo was not great today, we know he can play better but he was getting beat too easily by Jason Babin throughout the game. Now brings me to the pick of the bunch LT Sam Baker, who literately could be the worst Offensive lineman in the league, got beaten the **** out of by DE Trent Cole. Matt Ryan showed tremendous bravery and possibly deserved a Medal Of Honour for the way he played today under those conditions, when he knew he was getting hit pretty much every play because Baker could not hold down Cole for more than two seconds.
From the special teams, Matt Bryant was great again, no problems with him. Bosher had some issues at times in particular the one from the endzone which went 18 yards! However my big gripe is with Eric Weems. I will go mad if he lets another punt go over his head and bounce inside the 5 yard line after doing the exact same thing last week. Sort it out man!
All in all, a great win in a great game! Can’t ask for too much more, bring on the rest of the season! The Dirty Birds are coming!