Atlanta Falcons vs. Green Bay Packers: Live game day coverage [updated]

Oct 30, 2016; Atlanta, GA, USA; Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams (17) is tackled by Atlanta Falcons cornerback Robert Alford (23) in the fourth quarter at the Georgia Dome. The Falcons defeated the Packers 33-32. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 30, 2016; Atlanta, GA, USA; Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams (17) is tackled by Atlanta Falcons cornerback Robert Alford (23) in the fourth quarter at the Georgia Dome. The Falcons defeated the Packers 33-32. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports /

It’s the Atlanta Falcons vs. Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship Game. Blogging Dirty brings you live coverage from pregame to the final whistle.

Rise and shine Falcons Nation as we are only hours away from the Atlanta Falcons taking on the Green Bay Packers. We’re a mere four quarters away from potentially celebrating the second Super Bowl birth in franchise history.

Blogging Dirty’s coverage of the NFC Championship Game will be live throughout the day. I also invite readers to check us out on Facebook and/or interact with fellow Falcons fans via our Twitter feed. We’ll lead off the day with some anticipated pregame news and hype and roll with quarter-by-quarter updates.

The Atlanta Falcons are Super Bowl bound!

The city of Atlanta will celebrate tonight as the Atlanta Falcons have earned their second trip to the Super Bowl in franchise history. Many fans feel vindicated after suffering through so many poor, underachieving seasons. The stigma of the 2012 NFC Championship game can finally be laid to rest. For some fans, this is the first Super Bowl trip for the Falcons of their lifetime.

What an amazing season. Stick with Blogging Dirty as we keep you updated on all the recaps of the Green Bay drubbing, as well as, all the Super Bowl LI coverage.

Fourth quarter: Packers score again, 44-21

Aaron Rodgers had his offense in the “hurry up”, but their latest touchdown drive took way too long. The Falcons defense did bring some immense pressure on the drive, but Rodgers got free enough time to do what he does best. Rodgers found Jared Cook on a corner-type route that beat Keanu Neal. Vic Beasley stuffed Christine Michael on the two-point try.

The most interesting play of the drive came on a Rodgers’ scramble in which he grabbed Alford’s face-mask. Aflord drew the penalty and then looked to draw another in doing his best Lebron James impression.

Fourth quarter: The Falcons score yet again, 44-15

Start making reservations for Houston Falcons Nation, this game is all but done. The Packers offense has started to move the ball, but their defense has no answer. Tevin Coleman took a toss 3-yards to extend Atlanta’s lead. The Falcons were working with a short field following Green Bay’s botched onside kick try. Julio Jones continued to assert his dominance on the drive. He beat man coverage across the field to pick up six yards on a crucial third down.

The Falcons have now scored 10 touchdowns and put up three field goals in the NFL playoffs. Suffice to say, punter Matt Bosher hasn’t seen much action.

Third quarter: No quit in the Pack, move to 37-15

We didn’t expect the Packers to waive any white flags. After a Jalen Collins’ interception was overturned, Rodgers used his legs to get back into scoring range. Rodgers found Jordy Nelson for pay-dirt after Robert Alford slipped covering the slant route. Aaron Ripkowski punched in the two-point try on the very next play.

Green Bay’s attempt at an onside-kick didn’t go quite as well. Sanu caught the kick and was a shoelace tackle away from running it back.

Third quarter: Falcons extend their lead to 37-7

Reality is starting to set in that there won’t be any miracle comeback by the Green Bay Packers. Matt Ryan answered Rodgers’s first touchdown pass of the game with his fourth. Ryan found Devonta Freeman on a pass caught along the goal line. Freeman actually caught one of Morgan Burnett’s arms with the football. The play was initially ruled down at the 1-yard line, but the reversed after Dan Quinn’s challenge.

Oddly enough, Bryant’s extra point try sailed wide.

The big play of the drive was a big leap and catch by Julio Jones just beyond mid-field. He’s now caught 8 balls for 167 yards and a pair of touchdowns.

Third quarter: Packers finally get on the board, 31-7

The Packers finally found some offense with 12 play drive that lasted a little over four minutes and resulted in a Davante Adams touchdown. Atlanta’s defense still didn’t make it easy. Green Bay collectively looks half asleep and Rodgers is frustrated. Ty Montgomery headed to the locker room with an unknown injury.

If Atlanta needs to figure out anything on the defensive side of the ball, it’s better cover Jared Cook. Cook managed to get a little too wide open on underneath routes. We can assume there’s a lot of attention being shown Jordy Nelson’s way.

Third quarter: Falcons pouring it on, now lead 31-0

We regret to inform Green Bay faithful that momentum hasn’t shifted at all to start the second half. The Falcons exited the locker room chanting “reset”. A fired up defense took the field and quickly forced the Packers to punt. It took one play for Matt “MVP” Ryan to drive another nail into the coffin. Julio Jones burned Darius Gunter one-on-one for a 73-yard touchdown catch and run.

All Falcons in the first half, lead 24-0

Aaron Rodgers was sacked by Ra’Shed Hageman that set up a 3rd and long play. He heaved the ball about punt distance where Ricardo Allen made the interception. The Falcons offense went back to work with under 90 seconds. Matt Ryan continued to step up, in the pocket and find receivers all over the field. He’s completed passes to eight different receivers.

The first half was capped off with Dan Quinn opting to go for the Green Bay jugular. With seven seconds and no timeouts, Ryan found Julio Jones in one-on-one coverage. The play was reviewed, but there was no doubt that the touchdown was good.

The first half couldn’t have gone much better for the Atlanta Falcons. That means it’s been an absolute disaster for the Packers. Aaron Rodgers is nowhere near his comfort zone, having been hurried half-dozen times and pressured a half-dozen more. Brian Poole has twice lit up Rodgers on backside rushes that were unnoticed by the Green Bay front.

2nd quarter: Falcons extend lead to 17-0

Following the touch-back, the Falcons again drove the ball down the field on Green Bay’s defense. Kyle Shanahan continued to use play-action and crossing routes to keep the Packer secondary guessing. Atlanta capped the drive off with a 14-yard touchdown run by Matt Ryan. It was only Ryan’s sixth career touchdown carry.

The Packers again moved the ball down field, but failed to finish. Rodgers was starting to get into his groove when Aaron Ripkowski was stripped on a run up the gut. Jalen Collins ripped the ball out and recovered it in the end zone.

1st quarter Falcons lead, 10-0

It didn’t take long for the Falcons defense to learn that Jordy Nelson came to play. Aaron Rodgers connected with his favorite target twice for a total of 42 yards on their first drive. The Falcons clamped down on Rodgers after they crossed the 50. A 3rd down play was stuffed when Deion Jones charged up the middle and forced Rodgers to throw the ball away. Things were even better as Mason Crosby botched a 41-yard field goal try.

Matt Ryan took the ball right back down the field on Atlanta’s second drive. Sanu was the main target, but credit to Austin Hooper for a key 3rd down catch and run. The Falcons were unable to punch in another touchdown, but took a 10-0 lead on Matt Bryant’s 28-yard field goal.

The 1st quarter was a huge win for the Falcons as Rodgers only saw a few minutes of action and put up zero points.

1st quarter: Falcons strike first, lead 7-0

The Atlanta Falcons took the opening drive 80 yards on 13 plays to get a 7-0 lead on the Green Bay Packers. Matt Ryan looked everything like the MVP he is bound to be, completing six passes for 64 yards. The drive’s big play was a backside pass to Patrick DiMarco that went for 31 yards and set Atlanta up in the red zone. Ryan scrambled on 3rd and goal, finding Mohamed Sanu with a little shovel pass in the end zone.

The drive ate up over six minutes and obviously kept Aaron Rodgers off the field. Rodgers can’t be Joe Buck’s favorite player if he doesn’t have the ball in his hands.

Pregame update: Chip Kelly reportedly in mix to replace Kyle Shanahan

Glazer said during the Fox pregame coverage that Dan Quinn has lined up three candidates to replace Kyle Shanahan and Chip Kelly is one of them. This doesn’t surprise me at all…being the guy who first suggested it two weeks ago.

It would be a bold move on Quinn’s part, but one we shouldn’t judge up front. Kelly has proven himself to be a subject matter expert when it comes to offense. Don’t give the guy control over personnel moves and he won’t do any “ruining the Falcons”, as some fans suggest. I like Kelly to come in and adjust his offensive scheme to fit Atlanta’s offensive personnel.

Pregame update: Cheese-heads have invaded Atlanta

Some say the Packers fans travel well. I say they, like the Dallas Cowboys, have tons of transient fans across the country. We can only hope the Georgia Dome doesn’t reek of cheese come kick-off. Aaron Rodgers needs to hear every decibel of (authentic) crowd noise the Atlanta Falcons’ fans can produce.

Pregame update: Jordy Nelson will suit up

The big news from the Green Bay sideline is that receiver Jordy Nelson will suit up and play. Nelson has been out of action since breaking multiple ribs against the Giants. He claimed the pain from broken ribs was the “worst [he’s] ever felt” and only began breathing normal again last week. It’s commendable that Nelson will put his body on the line for his team, but I wonder if the risk outweighs his effectiveness. Nelson is extremely dynamic when healthy, but even a case of the hiccups will put you in the fetal position.

Nelson will reportedly wear a Kevlar vest as added protection. Blogging Dirty’s Eric Robinson weighed in on:

Sports Illustrated has also reported that Davante Adams will play despite an ankle injury. Adams didn’t practice much throughout the week and probably wouldn’t play if today wasn’t the NFC Championship Game.

Rise and shine, time to rise up

The Atlanta Falcons’ Twitter account got started early today, reminding fans of the mass show of solidarity. The above image is one within the #InBrotherhood series that has been posted throughout the playoffs.

Next: Why the Atlanta Falcons will win the NFC Championship

“In brotherhood” is one of many themes the Atlanta Falcons rallied behind this season. Head coach Dan Quinn deserves all the credit as his program undoubtedly brought the organization together. Julio Jones commented on Thursday that the Falcons were now “a complete team”. That strong sense of unity has the ‘Birds playing with a ton of confidence as they seek the trip to Houston in February.