Atlanta Falcons vs. Jacksonville Jaguars: Full game preview

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Dec 13, 2015; Charlotte, NC, USA; Carolina Panthers tight end Ed Dickson (84) catches a touchdown as Atlanta Falcons cornerback Robert Alford (23) defends in the second quarter at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Who to watch

Robert Alford

Alford had a rough afternoon against the Panthers. He was beaten by Ted Ginn on the back-breaking 74-yard touchdown in the first quarter, and what was more was the fact he gave up on the play and didn’t give chase.

Alford will spend time covering Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns this week, who can cause defensive backs nightmares, so he will need to put last week behind him and have a better game.

Devonta Freeman

Freeman’s production has dropped somewhat of late. Against the Jaguars defense, he could make the difference. Freeman can expect to see plenty of the ball, both on the ground and in the receiving game. His big-play ability in the open field makes him a key player to watch for the Falcons.

If Freeman gets rolling, look out.

Matt Ryan

Ryan continues to appear on this list because he remains at the heart of the offensive struggles. To get shutout in the NFL, no matter how good the opposing defense is, when you have Julio Jones and Devonta Freeman on your team, is simply unacceptable.

Ryan has taken his fair share of the blame in recent weeks, and it start and ends with him. Teams only go as far as their quarterback, and Ryan needs to improve his level of play to give the Falcons a chance.