Atlanta Falcons must stick with Matt Ryan, and can they still make playoffs?

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Nov 22, 2015; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Leonard Hankerson (85) reacts with wide receiver Roddy White (84) after scoring a touchdown against the Indianapolis Colts during the second half at the Georgia Dome. The Colts defeated the Falcons 24-21. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

2. Can the Falcons still make the playoffs?

Despite losing four of their past five games, the Falcons sit in the sixth seed spot, a game clear of the chasing pack. But on current form, the arrow is point firmly downward and they are merely keeping the seat warm.

But despite the mid-season struggles, the Falcons are still very much in the race. Anytime you start a season 6-1, you will be in contention for a wild-card berth entering December. Due to the inconsistent nature of the NFC, they have been able to hold onto the sixth seed.

Atlanta holds its destiny in its own hands, which is the positive. The poor play of late is the negative. They are not just losing football games, but losing to teams they should really be beating.

But that can change. A team doesn’t race to a 5-0 start by accident. Sure, the Falcons won some close games, but just about every loss has been close too. Take out the defeat to New Orleans, and the Falcons have lost the other three games by a combined seven points.

With six games to go, the Falcons face three particularly tough games on the schedule, the first of which is this weekend against the Vikings, and the others are the two meetings with the Panthers. To reach the playoffs, they will likely need to win at least one of these three and then win the remaining three games (Buccaneers, Jaguars and Saints).

It won’t be easy, but it’s still possible.

Next: An emerging force?