Falcons 50: Atlanta Falcons’ Biggest 2015 Games #4


Yesterday we kicked off the “Falcons 50” countdown to the start of the Atlanta Falcons’ first game of 2015. Today, we continue to look at the Falcons’ biggest games this year, moving onto No. 4.

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

Falcons’ biggest 2015 games #4 – @ Tampa Bay, Week 13

Divisional games are the most important on the schedule and have huge playoff implications. The fourth biggest game for the Atlanta Falcons this year is the road trip to Tampa Bay in Week 13.

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Why this game and not the home clash in Week 8?

It’s all about timing on the schedule. Yes, the home game is incredibly important for the Falcons’ playoff hopes, but the road game falls in December, the time you need to be playing your best football.

December is crunch time, and this contest marks the beginning of four huge divisional games in the space of five weeks to end the season. Atlanta will need to hit the ground running and post a victory in Florida.

The Falcons have won five of their last seven meetings with the Buccaneers, and have won three of their last five trips to the Raymond James Stadium.

RELATED: Behind enemy lines – A look at the 2015 Tampa Bay Buccaneers

In my opinion, division games should dominate December. They are the most important and exciting games on the schedule.

Tampa Bay will be no walk over this year, either.

Their offense looks like it could be the real deal with the addition of Jamies Winston at quarterback. Don’t expect him to be a star right away, but he has all the potential in the world.

Nov 9, 2014; Tampa, FL, USA; Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) drops back to pass as the Falcons beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 27-17 at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

If the Falcons are to make the playoffs in 2015, they will need a division record similar to the 5-1 they recorded in 2014. Of course, they will need to win more than one game outside of the division, too.

While every game matters, and division games are important whenever they appear on the schedule, this game being in December makes it all the more important.

More from Atlanta Falcons News

September football sometimes feels like an extension of the preseason. This is largely due to a number of key players not playing much in the preseason games to avoid injury. The downside is when the regular season comes around, they haven’t got enough game time under their belts.

By the time we reach December, the league’s best football is played, and this is the perfect time for the most important games of a team’s schedule.

Don’t sleep on the Buccaneers this year. My expectation is that they won’t reach the playoffs or even be ready to sustain a serious challenge in the NFC South, but they could be a slip up team for their rivals.

Hopefully by the time this game is played, the Falcons will be in the middle of an exciting playoff battle in the NFC South. If so, a win in Tampa Bay could have major postseason implications.

This game will be big and deservedly slots in at No. 4 on this list. What do you think, Atlanta Falcons fans?

How good will the Buccaneers be, and how big will this game be to the Atlanta Falcons’ season?