Should we be concerned about the Atlanta Falcons? No, but…
While we probably don’t need to be concerned about the Atlanta Falcons heading into the 2017 season, there are some questions to be answered1. How much will they miss Kyle Shanahan?
Ripping on Shanahan for a couple of play calls in the Super Bowl is almost cliche’ now. However, he was the architect behind the seventh-most prolific offense in NFL history. He also deserves at least some credit for Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan’s MVP season. Now, all accounts are newly named offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian will maintain the vast majority of Shanahan’s offense.
The playbook will remain mostly intact. So will the play-calling verbiage. Ryan, running back Devonta Freeman, and others have all said the transition thus far looks smooth. Ryan and Sarkisian are also reportedly getting along well.
"“To have Steve Sarkisian come in, his personality is very creative. He’s very bright,” Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff said back in May according to JuliaKate E. Culpepper of the Atlanta Journal-Constitutional. “He’s got a personality that mixes very well with the players and most importantly at the top. He and Matt Ryan are hitting it off very, very well and I’m really excited to hear that as far as the communication and how they see the game and how they see the game going forward with this team.”"
Ryan will actually have the freedom to audible at the line of scrimmage, something he wasn’t allowed to do under Shanahan (and might have saved the Super Bowl if he could’ve). However, this is all in theory right now. We won’t know for certain just how well things will work until the games are for real.