What We Learned: Week 3


Sep 22, 2013; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (11) in the rain before a game against the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

Embarrassing.  Unacceptable.  Disappointing.  Three words that will bounce around the minds of Falcons fans throughout the country this week.  Up 10-0 in the first quarter, fans knew not to relax.  3 quarters later, and the Birds fall short once again.  Two losses so far almost match our total from last season, but the panic button should not be pressed… yet.  Here are a few things we can think about till next Sunday.

The running game was a huge factor in today’s game, dishing out 146 yards on the ground.  The 2-headed monster of Quizz and Snelling was a nice combination to re-introduce running the ball in Atlanta.  If Steven Jackson can return and produce like Quizz/Snell did today, we will not have to worry about 2nd half collapses.

Everyone played well, so why didn’t we win?  If you look at the team as a whole, Ryan played solid, and the rest of the offense did as well.  The offensive line held up nicely, and the defense was mediocre.  A typical Atlanta performance to say the least.  Had it not been for a Harry Douglas fumble, or a Matt Bryant miss, the Atlanta Falcons would be 2-1.  Like week 1, if one of the things that went wrong for us happen to go right, we win.  All we can do now is look forward in hopes of reaching .500.

Our tackling issues must be resolved.  Time after time we saw Atlanta defenders bounce off the opposing team.  If we can fix this, our defense is off the field, and the opposing team isn’t scoring points.  You can bet wrapping up will be practiced exclusively this week, and if it isn’t… a long season is ahead of us.

Other NFC Elites are struggling.  The Green Bay Packers as well as the San Francisco 49ers are 1-2, but that still isn’t an excuse.  Atlanta could EASILY be 3-0 right now.  It’s all a matter of making plays when they present themselves, and not allowing the other team to kill our momentum.

If Atlanta can make the playoffs, these recent losses won’t mean a thing.  The regular season is erased come Wild Card Weekend, so don’t give up now.  Could Atlanta be the 2013 version of the 2010 Packers?  We will find out in January.