Atlanta Falcons: What can we expect from Kyle Shanahan in year 2?
Like it or not, Kyle Shanahan is here to stay for at least another year as the Atlanta Falcons’ offensive coordinator. Last season was full of ups and downs for an Atlanta offense that many expected to be able to score at will. Mistakes are bound to happen, especially in a coordinators’ first year in town, but can we improve on those errors and make the 2016 offense be an even bigger threat?
Kyle Shanahan has been an NFL offensive coordinator since 2008 with 4 different teams. His quarterbacks have usually been mid tier guys, with Matt Ryan being the best quarterback he has ever coached. Lets take a look at how his offensives trended from year one to year two.
- Houston offensive scoring ranking year one: 21st overall
- Houston offensive scoring ranking year two: 11th overall
That is a pretty significant jump in scoring offense. Houston had Matt Schaub running the show under center, with Steve Slaton carrying the load in the backfield. One of the major keys for this improvement was Schaub limiting the amount of turnovers he had. Turnovers are drive killers and by decreasing that number, this Houston team was able to convert more possessions into points.
- Washington offensive scoring ranking year one: 27th overall
- Washington offensive scoring ranking year two: 24th overall
The improvement was not as impressive in Washington, but I have two names for you: Donovan McNabb and Rex Grossman. Those were the quarterbacks at the helm for these two rebuilding years. After year two the Redskins drafted Robert Griffin III and were able to go from 24th to 12th in scoring offense. The key again, turnover reduction.
The trend in year two is that Shanahan and his quarterbacks are able to dramatically decrease turning the ball over. The correlation? The more chances your offense has in the red zone, the more points a team should score. That has held true in Shanahan’s previous stops, so lets hope the trend continues in Atlanta.