Falcons 50: Atlanta Falcons’ Biggest 2015 Games #5


We are 50 days away from the Atlanta Falcons’ season opener with the Philadelphia Eagles. Today, we begin our countdown with an all-new Blogging Dirty series, “Falcons 50”. For the first five days of “Falcons 50”, I will be taking a look at the Falcons’ biggest games of 2015.

You can find the full list of “Falcons 50” posts here.

Falcons’ biggest 2015 games #5 – vs Indianapolis, Week 11

We are almost ready for the start of the 2015 NFL season, and finally the talk will be over. For the Atlanta Falcons, it’s important they bounce back from two disappointing seasons and sustain a playoff push.

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The Falcons have the ‘easiest’ strength of schedule, although you should take that with a pinch of salt.

There are many intriguing games on the Falcons’ schedule this year, and some clearly look tougher than others.

This list isn’t about toughest or easiest games, however, it’s about the biggest games. The games that will have that extra level of excitement and anticipation the week leading up to it.

One of those games is in Week 11 when Andrew Luck and the Colts come to town.

RELATED: Falcons schedule breakdown – Indianapolis Colts

If this game was played last season, there would have only been one winner, and it wouldn’t have been Atlanta. The Falcons owned the league’s worst pass defense last year while the Colts put up more yards in the air than any other team.

Matt Ryan and the offense may have been able to put up some points, but there would have been no stopping Luck and company.

Jan 4, 2014; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck (12) spikes the ball after scoring a touchdown in the second half against the Kansas City Chiefs during the 2013 AFC wild card playoff football game at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

What’s important this year is that the gap has closed. The Falcons have aggressively addressed their pass defense both in free agency and the draft.

In free agency, Atlanta acquired defensive ends Adrian Clayborn and O’Brien Schofield as well as linebackers Brooks Reed and Justin Durant. Former Jets cornerback Phillip Adams and former Seahawks linebacker Allen Bradford were also added.

In the draft, the Falcons used the eighth overall pick to select Clemson’s all-time sack leader Vic Beasley, while also picking up cornerback Jalen Collins in the second round.

Plenty of change in personnel, but will it translate onto the field?

To win this game, the Falcons will have to hope so. Indianapolis had a strong offense in 2014, and it should get even better this year.

Luck has plenty of weapons in the passing game with T.Y. Hilton, Donte Moncrief and now Andre Johnson, and veteran Frank Gore has been added to the backfield to improve their run game. Rookie receiver Phillip Dorsett will be a player to watch out for also.

Offensively, Atlanta will need to be on song to put up plenty of points.

With Ryan under center and Julio Jones out wide, the Falcons will also be dangerous. They will need the likes of Roddy White or rookie Justin Hardy to step up in the passing game, and will look for balance from either Tevin Coleman or Devonta Freeman in the run game.

This is arguably the Falcons’ toughest matchup of 2015, and it will be one of their biggest games of the season.

It’s a home game, so Atlanta know how important it will be to come out with a victory. Add in the battle of two premier quarterbacks and far from trustworthy defenses and this game has all the elements to be a classic.

What do you think, Falcons fans? Stay tuned as “Falcons 50” continues tomorrow with the Falcons’ fourth biggest match of the season.

Next: Fantasy Football: Top 20 quarterbacks for 2015