Dirty Bird Daily: Atlanta Falcons vs. Seattle Seahawks Twitter takes

Oct 16, 2016; Seattle, WA, USA; Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (11) defended by Seattle Seahawks safety Earl Thomas (29) in the third quarter during a NFL football game at CenturyLink Field. The Seahawks defeated the Falcons 26-24. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 16, 2016; Seattle, WA, USA; Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (11) defended by Seattle Seahawks safety Earl Thomas (29) in the third quarter during a NFL football game at CenturyLink Field. The Seahawks defeated the Falcons 26-24. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /

There’s already a lot of talk circulating social media regarding the Atlanta Falcons vs. Seattle Seahawks playoff match-up. We’ll dig into some of my favorite tweets in today’s Dirty Bird Daily.

I’m admittedly a “Twitter junkie” and spend way too much time logged on and surfing out daily sports news. The Atlanta Falcons vs. Seattle Seahawks match-up is currently a trendy topic and for obvious reason. I recently spent some time surfing Twitter for anything I could find that was interesting and applicable to Saturday’s playoff game. I’m happy to share some of my favorites with our audience.

I welcome any and all BD readers to find us on Twitter @BloggingDirty.

2012 Divisional Playoffs

I feel good about that tweet. It was 2012, Seattle Seahawks vs. Atlanta Falcons, at the Georgia Dome, for the trip to the NFC title game on the line. This was a much better Seattle roster back in 2012 and Russell Wilson played one of his best games. Better yet, those Falcons were the softer, gentler Mike Smith kind. Regardless, Atlanta still had the benefit of playing inside the Dome and took a two-point win.

Something I wouldn’t count on this time around is Matt Ryan turning the ball over as much. We’ll get that Richard Sherman vs. Julio Jones match-up that is so good, but it won’t be easy for Seattle to account for Mohamed Sanu, Taylor Gabriel, and Aldrick Robinson as well.

Related Story: Falcons vs Seahawks rematch in Divisional Playoffs

Earl “Nostradamus” Thomas

Earl Thomas predicted this game following Seattle’s Week 6 victory over the Atlanta Falcons. It’s not much of a bold prediction considering the talent each team has, but it’s a nice read. If anything, I enjoy reading about the raw emotions that flow through players during heavily contested games.

It’s unfortunate for the Seahawks that they won’t have their All-Pro safety come Saturday. I’m sure the Falcons won’t miss having him patrol the secondary though.

Seattle’s injuries excuse

As evidenced by the above tweet, the 12th man is a little too confident about coming to Atlanta. Why else would Brian Nemhauser make such a statement? What Brian is saying is that the Week 6 game was only two-point win because Seattle wasn’t playing with a full deck. Don’t get me wrong, these are good players the Seahawks were down, but they played Week 6 about as good as any game all year.

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It doesn’t surprise me the Thomas Rawls bandwagon is loading up. Rawls ripped off a team-record rushing performance last week, but the Seahawks aren’t playing the Lions twice. The Falcons only gave up 72 rushing yards to Seattle the first time around and they’ve gotten much stingier since.

I fully expect Nemhauser to deploy the “but if we had Earl Thomas healthy” excuse, should the Falcons pull off the victory. Injuries happen folks and Atlanta has certainly been no stranger to them in 2016 either.

Wildcard playoff momentum

I’ve been one to suggest the Falcons playing a Wildcard game wouldn’t be so bad and this is why. Bye weeks can often serve as momentum-killers. Even worse is when the opponent after a bye week comes off a big win. The Seahawks are understandably amped up after whipping the Lions and come to the Georgia Dome thinking they’ll stifle the Falcons just the same.

It’s worth remembering the Falcons came off their regular season bye to play Seattle in Week 6. Atlanta took the loss but didn’t show any signs of rust or complacency during the contest. I will acknowledge the advantage the Falcons have in coming off a full week of rest and not having to travel. The Seahawks will travel across the country with bumps and bruises still noticeable from Wildcard weekend.

Skip calls out Seattle

Skip Bayless finally tweets something we can agree on!

I hate to say it at the risk of sounding overconfident but Skip is right. Detroit was lucky to get into the playoffs and were a round one “sweetheart” match-up for the Seahawks The Lions progressed as a team without Calvin Johnson throughout 2016, but they obviously needed him last Saturday.

The Falcons have the big name, game-breaking players on both sides of the ball. If anyone should be careful about being overconfident, it’s actually that 12th man.

Dungy on dropped passes

Tony Dungy brings up an obvious, but excellent point about the dropped passes last Saturday. Matthew Stafford couldn’t buy a reception throughout most of the game and it kept Detroit out of the end-zone. We can make wise cracks about the officiating all day, but it was clear the Lions’ receivers didn’t handle Seattle’s physical secondary well.

Perhaps we should have saw it coming. According to SportingCharts.com’s dropped passes for 2016, the Detroit Lions rank 5th in the NFL at 4.8%. To compare, the Atlanta Falcons rank 28th at 2.1% of all passes dropped. The Falcons can and have played physical secondary’s this season. Julio Jones and company will be well-prepared to battle on Saturday.

Controlling the tempo

Michael Garrison’s Twitter handle would indicate he’s an Atlanta Falcons fan, but I have to disagree with his tweet. If the first half of Week 17 was any indication, the Seahawks are the ones with the burden of slowing down Atlanta’s offense. Tevin Coleman, Devonta Freeman, and the tight ends should be heavily involved in the passing game either way, but I like the Atlanta offense to set and keep the pace.

Technically, both offenses compared in terms of regular season pace. FootballOutsiders.com measures offensive pace using NFL Drive Charts and Scoring Summaries. They measured the Seahawks at 27.48 seconds per play (Sec/Play) and the Falcons a close-28.29 Sec/Play.

Next: How Matt Ryan has already won NFL MVP