Atlanta Falcons beat Baltimore Ravens 20-19 in final preseason game


The Atlanta Falcons closed out their preseason with a victory, beating the Baltimore Ravens 20-19. It wasn’t a night for the starters, with Matt Ryan taking just one snap, but rather one for the players on the bubble of the roster fighting for their careers.

One of those men was quarterback Sean Renfree. After fighting hard all preseason and putting in solid performances, he got his touchdown pass. He was featured in the first half, going 10 of 15 for 75 yards, one touchdown and no interceptions. He didn’t throw a single pick in preseason.

In the second half, it was the Rex Grossman show. Grossman completed 4 of 9 passes for 41 yards. Has Renfree done enough to be named Ryan’s backup?

It was a good night for rookie running back Tevin Coleman, who is aiming to solidify his spot as the Falcons’ number one running back. He rushed eight times for 58 yards, including an excellent 26-yard run. Terron Ward played admirably too, finishing with 18 carries for 69 yards.

Wideout Nick Williams is hoping to make the roster, and he made a team-high six receptions for 35 yards. Carlton Mitchell, who will likely miss out, caught two passes including an excellent catch and run for a 25-yard score.

It was another receiver who almost stole the show, and one who has his roster spot secured. Justin Hardy, on punt return duty, was able to break a tackle, spin away and sprint for a 70-yard return, almost taking it all the way for a touchdown. He was targeted on a deep ball by Renfree in the first half, but pass interference was called on the Ravens. A good performance, and a nice way to cap off a strong preseason for the rookie.

Atlanta looked comfortable winners, but this was not to be. With 2:10 left in the fourth, the Falcons owned a 20-6 lead. A Jeremy Butler touchdown cut the lead to seven. After the offense stalled, Matt Bosher’s punt was blocked and the Ravens soon after had the ball in the end zone again. Down 20-19 with 45 seconds left on the clock, Baltimore went for two. Incomplete. Falcons win.

Overall, there were plenty of positives to take away from the game with some strong performances from the young guys. Stay tuned to Blogging Dirty as we continue to recap this game and bring you up to date with all the upcoming roster moves.

Preseason is in the books. Next stop, real football.

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