As we approach the time for training camps, hype and storylines are all buzzing like always. Ask any fan, and, more than likely, they feel they have a legitimate shot at making the playoffs and making a Super Bowl push like never before.
But, when we go into Atlanta, it’s more than merely a one-time, hard sprint to Santa Clara, but shouts and cheers are heard for the changing of the regime and how these changes affect not only this year but those to come.
All of these hirings and firings signify a changing to what sports are meant to be in Atlanta. It seems every year, heartache and disappointment find all of the beloved teams, and we are all sitting on our couches thinking “what may have been?”.
Dan Quinn will never have the namesake that will precede him as he is still, relatively, young in his coaching career. But, there was a reason why teams fought tooth and nail for him after yet another Super Bowl appearance with the Seahawks.
Quinn is not to be confused with the second coming of Vince Lombardi, but there is more potential in this coach than any that have been on the coaching carousel over the past few years.
He, along with Pete Carroll, transformed Seattle from an NFL cesspool to one of back-to-back Super Bowl appearances. And their efforts reinforced the old adage of “offense wins games, but defense wins championships.”
As an Atlanta Falcons fan, it’s easy to feel as if you have won the lottery when you combine a defensive guy who gave birth to the Legion of Boom in Seattle from a bunch of no names who may have been the next batch of UPS drivers if they were on other teams.
These players, along with others, had a chip on their shoulders, and Coach Quinn helped make these guys who they are as part of the most feared defense is NFL, and if you have the young talent as Atlanta does, then, as a fan, you’re foaming at the mouth.
Not to take anything away from the players in Seattle as they’ve become great players, but there was a reason why these guys were taken late in the drafts or went in drafted. But, Quinn made these men more than just highly-gifted athletes — he made them, collectively, a force.
For Atlanta, there is little doubt of the athleticism of these defensive players, but watch this year how that athleticism is harnessed in and controlled like a well-oiled machine.
The ceiling for Atlanta is much higher than the one in Seattle. The defense will reach to the same level as when Dan left, and when combining that with fire power of Atlanta’s offense, it will be a deadly combination.
Falcon fans have won the lottery with this hire, and are about to yield the rewards.